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How often have I written something about getting rid of clutter, clearing out wardrobes, organizing drawers, purging the basement, cleaning out the cupboards blah, blah, blah?
Every time I’ve written about one of these things, I’ve actually been doing it so why is my lifestyle not minimalist?
Why is minimalism eluding me still?
Minimalism reaches out to me practically every time I log into Facebook. And I don’t mind it. In fact I want it to be my real friend, not just on Facebook. So much so that I have decided to refer to it in the third person, even give it a name, say something strong and assertive like “Minimalist.”
My theory is that if I talk to Minimalist like an imaginary friend it will become more real to me and might even become a part of my life. I want to get to the point where I can casually shrug and say “Minimalist and I go back a long way.”
Most of you quite understand what I’m trying to do. Some of you are already shaking your head about the state of my mental health. Don’t care. That’s another thing I’m working on.
Read up a little on the mental-health benefits of minimalism.
“Minimalist habits reduce the time you have to spend in many areas of life, including cleaning, shopping and organizing.”
They had me at cleaning.
“You may find yourself happier staying home as opposed to going out as often. A minimalist-style home is less cluttered and messy, which can make it more enjoyable to spend time at home.”
I’m a bit worried about that one. Spending time at home is what Newman and I do best. If we liked it more we might never be seen in public again.
“It can be common for significant others to compete over living space or feel crowded by each other’s possessions. Removing any unnecessary items from your home allows both you and your partner more space to store the possessions that you find truly valuable”.
We each have our own space in St. John’s but that’s because we are lucky enough to have the space to have our own space.
The house in Heart’s Content isn’t as flexible. A downsized place in St. John’s wouldn’t be as flexible. Newman would have to get rid of a lot of stuff. Ha ha.
My friend Minimalist says “owning fewer belongings means you can live more comfortably in a smaller space, allowing for huge savings on rent, mortgage, utilities, and other home-related expenses.”
There’s not a Boomer alive who doesn’t know that and while we have no plans to move, we might want to someday. Looking around and thinking about packing up this place, especially assuming we’ll be even less lively than we are now (ha ha) is enough to drive me to strong drink in the morning.
Even if you never move, Minimalist says “It can be incredibly stressful to search for something you’ve misplaced, and you're a lot less likely to experience this frustration by owning fewer items.”
We’re famous for that.
Newman is worse than I am. It’s easier for him to go out and buy another one of something he needs than to find the one he saved just for this occasion. She even says “minimalism can mean no longer using your vehicle for everyday storage.”
If the concept got me at cleaning, this should grab Newman. We have five sheds; two in St. John’s, two in Heart’s Content and Newman’s van, which does have the advantage of being mobile but leads to many occasions of being in Heart’s Content with the doodad you need back in St. John’s in the van.
And if that’s not enough “a minimalist life style results in you becoming more productive in ways that matter or having more relaxing time in your daily routine. An empty spare room can become a painting studio or yoga space or even a gym if that makes you happy.”
I’ll let you know how close my friend and I are getting.
Janice Wells writes from St. John’s.