As I wrote yesterday, the documentary "Minimalism" has really stuck with me through the week. I started listening to "The Minimalists" podcast each morning while I get ready and I think that the message of it all is really bringing meaning to my life. "The Minimalists," Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, talk quite a bit about having things that add meaning to your life and getting rid of the things that do nothing to enhance your quality of life. They don't say that minimalists should embrace a monk-like life, but that one should not be bogged down by useless stuff.
I've always been pretty good about having what I need at a given time and when I feel the urge to get new things, I replace them, sending old or unused things on to another life instead of just adding the new to the old for a bigger collection. As I've pondered this "minimalism" concept more and more and spent hours cleaning my closet and finding things to get rid of, I've been faced with choices. What to keep? What to get rid of? And I decided (with a little help from the "Gilmore Girls" trailer... still haven't seen "A Year In The Life") that I only want to keep the things that are useful or bring me joy.
When I open the kitchen cabinet and see 2 shelves full of coffee cups (too many, since I don't even own a coffee machine), I decided to keep the ones that give me joy (i.e. I have a memory tied to it, etc.). When I look at the shoes collected under my bed, I got rid of the ones that I only wear once every several months or so. Even as someone who is usually very good about only having what I think I need, I've found that I have more stuff than is really necessary.
Also, building upon the concept of things that bring joy, I mentioned yesterday that I don't talk much about depression or anxiety, but that these are things that have plagued me for the better part of my life. Lately, due largely to job dissatisfaction, I've found myself feeling down. And I don't like to feel down. And so, I've started trying to find joy not just in the material things that I've decided to keep, but in the natural things around me: sunlight, a warm day, plants, hummingbirds, the sound of a child laughing outside.
Perhaps simplicity really is the way that we can all get through this thing called life... together...
What's sustainable about this outfit?
: proceeds from the tee go to charity
: the bracelet is handmade
: the ring is handmade
: the sweater is second-hand