I have been looking into these three ‘lifestyles’ for a while, getting started but never managing to make it a full part of my day-to-day life. Again, my procrastination into getting started stems from the idea that I want to do things perfectly. Each of these lifestyles come with various books, websites or ideas and with no time to “study” them properly , how could I get started?
I have now realized that adapting anything to suit you and make it sustainable for you is far more important than doing it perfectly. My motto for 2017 has been “build your boat”. I have not read all the books and I still have a lot to learn, but here is what I have gathered and brought on my boat so far.
Things won’t make you happy, experiences will.
“Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, Rot (and only in that order)”. It is definitely easier to say “no” to things than getting rid of them. I have stopped buying lots of clothes (makeup is more difficult) and I now try to invest in durable options. I also try to recycle as much as possible and give (or buy) from charity shops when appropriate.
“Surround yourself with items that spark joy”. This is what has been the game changer that helped me to apply the other two ‘principles’ into my lifestyle. Just keeps what makes you happy. Thinking this way has really helped me to let go of things and to stop feeling guilty about what I keep.
How I apply this to my lifestyle
Let me give you a silly example of how I apply this to my life. I own a lot of nail polish, and that is even after making the conscious effort of getting rid of half of my collection. Most of what I have kept are shades of nudes or reds. My husband would probably think that they are all the same and that I could only keep one nude, one red and basta. Well they are not all the same to me and I love all the shades that I have left. I find painting my nails fun and therapeutic, I used to blog about it a lot and painting my nails it is the first thing I do when I am on holiday. I am bringing five different nail polishes on holidays with me so my mum and I can paint our nails together.
I used to get stuck in the idea that I had to get rid of it all to be a “minimalist” but now I understand that I don’t have to. Indeed, this is a source of joy for me. However, it has been a very long time since I have bought a new nail polish because I feel super content with what I have. I guess that this makes it “Zero waste” as I refuse to add more to my collection.
Being content with what you have is an amazing feeling. It is very empowering to be able to enjoy the present and your lifestyle without wishing for more or future objects to make you happy. Mindfulness is something that has also helped to be in a state to implement these stages.
I am going to keep educating myself and live by these principles. There is still a lot to go through in our flat to make sure I only keep what makes me happy. I am finally done with clothes. It is so satisfying to see that I have “created” more space and frankly the Marie Kondo way of folding clothes quickly becomes addictive.
The next step is to clear my desk to create an inspiring and functional working space.
Have you tried to change your lifestyle?
Picture: our room at the Montra resort in Koh Tao
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