Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Keeping Your Life Simple

This post is part of The Peony Project's monthly link-up

Ever get that feeling when you move to a new home and you throw the moving truck door open and are instantly overwhelmed at all the stuff you have?  Welcome to my life.  My name is Lecy and I am a chronic minimalist.

You might hear the word "minimalist" and imagine someone who sells everything they own and moves to a tree-house in the wilderness.  Although there are some people who do that, there are quite a few more who own homes and possessions.  They just enjoy having more open space than cluttered.

It's not that I don't enjoy having things or spending money, because this girl could easily blow a paycheck in one trip to Target, but I get such a headache with the struggle of having to maintain, clean, move, store everything.

A few years ago, my husband and I made a decision to lead a more simple life.  To be intentional in what we spent money on.  We were going to simplify our home.  Our diet.  Our routines.  Our lives.

What prompted this decision was moving two times in three months.  We had decided to move from our apartment of eight years to a house in the country.  Our move-out date was set with the apartment, only the house we were moving into wasn't ready yet.  Major anxiety attack!  Having been left no other choice, we had to pack all of our possessions into a storage unit and move into a hotel with two cats in tow.  It was a nightmare.  We kept only necessities with us and luckily made it through the next three months in tact.  

Living for that long without all the "comforts" of home made me realize that it is easier not to have the knick-knacky things and to streamline our possessions to necessities + things we are passionate about.  By doing this, we learned to appreciate the smaller things.  The moments.  The quality time with each other and with the fuzzies.  Real food.  Nature.

By simplifying your possessions, you're not losing things.  Instead, you are gaining appreciation for the things important to you and letting go of the rest.

Life can often become cluttered with everything you collect over time and when you learn to let go of some of these things, you open up that space.  This space, left open, can clear your mind and promote the three c's: contemplation, creativity and connection with those around you.  I'm sure you have experienced that feeling before - when your home is cluttered and you cannot think straight.  After you've put things in their rightful space or editing your closet contents, your mind opens right up.

"A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone." - Henry David Thoreau

In the book of Matthew we are told to store our treasures in heaven and not collect them here, where they could be taken by thieves or destroyed by pests.  This doesn't mean you shouldn't have possessions here on earth, but your focus should be on God.  He wants us to enjoy all that He has provided for us, but by simplifying our list of things and letting go of the the stuff we no longer need or appreciate, we are also pleasing Him.

What are some things you'd like to simplify in 2015?

The post Keeping Your Life Simple first appeared on A Simpler Grace.   If you found this article helpful, don't forget to share it with your friends!

8 comments:

  1. When I married my husband 10 months ago, the only 'furniture' my husband owned was a blow-up bed, a folding table, and two folding chairs. He's in the military and liked to be able to fit everything into his car when it came time to move to the next place. While we did buy some furniture after our wedding (such as a REAL bed -- that was one thing I wasn't budging on! :-P) we still tried to only get a few necessities to fill our home so that we could entertain guests (which my husband loves to do). In a few months we're going to be moving again, and I'm sure I'll feel like you and just want to get rid of everything extra so the move is easier. Thankfully it's just my husband and I, so it shouldn't be THAT hard to move....but then again my husband LOVE books and has a really nice (BIG) one in the spare room, so that'll be fun.....

    Anywho, to answer your question, I would say I would like to minimize the amount of clutter we get. While my husband can live just fine with little to no furniture....he's somewhat of a pack-rat when it comes to paperwork and letters. Whereas I can more easily part with these types of things. Especially if the paper in question is over 5 years old! But my husband is sentimental about those things....so I don't know who's going to win out with that! :-P

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  2. Katie, I completely understand. My sister was married to a guy in the air force and she'd dread when his new orders came in and it meant packing up everything they owned and moved across the country. My husband is a paper pack-rat too, so we've had to find a good balance between his need to keep everything and mine to toss it. Thanks for coming by!

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  3. Janella PanchamsinghApril 26, 2016 at 10:19 AM

    A simple life is so essential for me it keeps my anxiety down and I can breathe!

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  4. What a great reminder to appreciate the small things.

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  5. I'm a minimalist toooooo! And also have 4 fur-babies... we have so much in common... ;P LOVE your reflections on minimalism. Thanks for sharing!

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  6. Thanks for coming by to read today Julie! :)

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  7. Yay for minimalism and fur-babies!! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your sweet comment!

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