Just A Bit Of A Personal Ramble

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I’ve been writing quite often about minimalism, the need to declutter, and my own attempt at saving my sanity in a world seemingly filled with chaos.  This post is just me putting my thoughts in words and trying to understand what drives me in this…what drives you in this.

Today, although a day full of laughter, was also a day filled with much stress and anxiety over situations which I have little control. I noticed that my way of dealing with such matters, is to clean. To clean and declutter. But something odd happened today that made me stop and have a word with myself. I realised that the chaos in my environment is creating chaos in my mind (and that works the other way also!). I also realised that I am also mindlessly scrolling through online shops (& badly tempting myself to break my shopping ban) as a tool to escape my stress. To just…not think.

None of these is a good habit.

Window shopping online, though mind-numbing, is a horrible habit. I found all manner of lovely items that I never knew I needed, but am now fantasising about. Not the best idea for me at the moment. Because for some reason, when I am really anxious about something, those new baubles feel so….necessary. More necessary than that pile of bills waiting for payment. And how twisted is that?! Of course, I do have enough self-control to fight the urge to make those purchases. It’s the fact that I’m even considering it, that truly disturbs me. What is my problem?! Why am I so distressed that all logical reasoning seems to have left me? Uncool.

Cleaning. Cleaning isn’t a bad thing. Of course not. Except when everyone around me gets very nervous because I am cleaning with such vigour (? Is that the proper word?) that the people around me are trying to find out what’s wrong. Crazy cleaning. Yea, that’s it. Crazy cleaning. That’s not OK.

Declutter rampage. I understand that I am running the declutter challenge. Today, I was so… overwhelmed, that I truthfully had the feeling that I could happily live with about 10% of the stuff. I don’t actually have so much, so that’s actually quite a small amount. Most of my clutter is paperwork, bills, more papers, printouts, instruction manuals (all things which must be kept for what, 10 years?) random ‘what-if’ items (like empty plastic boxes that I will never use as food containers), photos from everywhere & everyone, expired sauce mixes that I don’t like but feel wasteful to toss out, and sentimental items. These are the items which are consistently moved from place to place, but never find a proper place where they are organised and away.  I took the time to sit and think about why I was reacting this way. I considered many possible options. 1 of them being that there is an actual term for people who just purge their items obsessively. I think the term is anti-hoarding, but I cannot remember. There is a whole thing with it, although it is not so common because minimalism is good, but hoarding is really bad. (OK, I am not saying that minimalism is a behavioural problem. I’m saying that people who purge everything including their bed, is beginning to be seen as a problem.) This is not my situation though because our place is a ‘work in progress’…let’s say that. And then the thought came to me. OMG now I understand why I’m so strange about this sometimes. I have spent so much of my life living like a nomad. One in which I could fit all of my possessions in 2 large luggages, that just being in a normal home with average stuff (like dishes, spices, pictures, open cabinets, paperwork & exactly 5 nic nacs) overwhelms me completely.  It isn’t my environment that’s causing a problem. It’s me.

Once I had finally completed my self-analysis, the stress and anxiety had left me. Presumably to go find someone more fun to annoy. But now I am really thinking about these things. Although I may have discovered the reason for my clutter craziness, it doesn’t mean that it will stop bothering me. True, I have to be able to compromise and not force my husband to live in a stark environment. But I also have to get things organised (and yes, continue some decluttering) so that I can put myself in a happy mind.

I will surely be over-analysing the purchase-purge cycle that so many of us find ourselves in. I have already been considering this quite a bit because I am on the shopping ban for many months now and have spent a large amount of that time analysing the purchasing decisions I make. This came up today because of the time spent on the net dreaming about items of clothing I would feel fabulous in.

So I guess for you this means: More strange analytical blog posts upcoming.

Do you do this?

-Mliae


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How Was Your February Declutter?

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We are now in the month of March. I have been actively decluttering/removing 1 item daily for the last 5 weeks. I have now arrived at the moment when I am starting to see the change. It’s much like the early hours of the morning when you can see a clear sky and just the tiniest rays of the sun climbing over the horizon. Like that. It gives me hope. It is also making me think. I have been doing this for more than 2 months. Many days, I remove more than 1 item. Some days, I only remove something small – like a broken ink pen. However, that should amount to minimum 80 items. How do we have that much stuff?! This set off a long time of self-reflection about what makes me purchase. (Another blog post entirely). But it’s something we should discuss!

I have set a schedule for myself. That one day, every week (until I am sorted through it all) I will go through 1 storage item. I have baskets, bags, boxes… I would like to be able to reduce these ‘storage solutions’ or use them for other clutter.  I do not have so many of these, but I do need to go through the contents. Perhaps I will discover my days’ items from here?

For the other 6 days, I will still be focusing on singular items each day. I read a comment which suggested focusing on categories. So, I think I will give this a try this month! (Thanks, ginger fluff!)

I would like to ask some of the awesome people who have been joining me in decluttering (either with this challenge, or on their own terms); How’s it going?

Through My Lens

Saguren

Chasing Rockwell 

Leggy Peggy

Elle Knowles

Ghost MNC

365 Days of New

Unexpected in Common Hours

Janet’s Writing Blog

Grubbing With Jess

Libby

The above listed are the bloggers that I am able to link to. I am happy to say that there are some incredible people here that have joined the challenge, which I am not able to link to. Please, let us know how you are doing!

I have found that doing this kind of challenge is ALWAYS better with friends! We keep each other accountable and sometimes that’s exactly what’s needed to get things done!

Who’s with me for the rest of March and April?!

-Mliae


February Declutter: Update

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Hello all 🙂

I just wanted to share a quick update on how my February declutter is going. Things are progressing quite nicely. Although I must confess that it seems so odd that I really can’t yet notice the difference that I was hoping to see. Except the bookshelf. My bookshelf makes me smile now!  I have a few theories on why this is. These last few weeks, I have been focusing on random objects. Products that have been used or expired, items that I notice and think to myself ‘I can do without that’, a plate or cup that has been chipped…. So I think that when taking one random item from somewhere and ridding myself of it, it is barely noticed. (This should be a big thing to consider when making future purchases. Is it important enough that I will actually notice if I no longer have it?) When I decluttered my books, I took away everything from the shelves and only replaced the items which I enjoyed, was excited to read or which have a function. Now it looks completely different! I think I need to repeat this process in another area for the upcoming 10 days of this month.

There is one are of the place that’s showing some big spaces. It seems that those electric cuts we had, managed to break some of our small appliances in the kitchen. So, we said goodbye to our coffee machine and microwave. Happily, we do have a press to keep the morning java monsters happy. 😉 In some way, I don’t so much miss the microwave though. Yes, really. I find myself wondering if we really do need to purchase a new one. It makes things easier and faster, of course. But…as we don’t eat ready meals (you know, the ones in the plastic boxes that require a micro), really everything we eat can be heated in the oven. Or that’s how it seems anyway.  *As I sit here thinking to myself….’am I missing something? There has to be something that we like that can only be made in the micro.’….’am I REALLY writing this?? People are going to think I’ve lost it!’*  So, there is that. And in a small space, missing something the size of a micro and coffee machine, well, that does show a big difference.

I am listing below some of the brave people who have joined me in this decluttering challenge (because EVERYTHING is better when you do it with friends!) I’m hoping they will let us know how it’s going and maybe even drop a link if they’ve posted updates too!

Janet’s Writing Blog

Unexpected in Common Hours

365 Days of New

Ghost MNC

Saguren

Chasing Rockwell

Leggy Peggy

Through My Lens

Elle Knowles

How is your February decluttering? Would you like to join us?! 😀

-Mliae

*Photo sourced via Pixabay


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January Declutter Challenge

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Hello all 🙂

First off, no, this is not my home. I sourced the feature photo via Pixabay. However, sometimes this is how it feels when you’re drowning in clutter. (Or when you initially combine households or add flatmates) We’ve ALL been there!

As I mentioned in my Happy New Year post, I have set forth a 31 day challenge for those who wish to join me, to discard one item every day for the month of January. Discard meaning: Give away, donate, sell, use up or toss. At the end of the month, you have successfully rid yourself of 31 items and at 1 item per day, hopefully no-one has gone into  a state of shock.

I actually love this challenge! I have been keeping a record of what I am able to discard daily. Sometimes it has been nothing more than an empty jar of daycream. However, since I only need 1 jar and not 3, this jar will not be replaced and therefore counts 😉 For the first half of this month I have managed to toss 2 chipped coffee mugs and several chipped/cracked plates plus 3 random salad bowl that go with nothing and usually find themselves being used for plants. I forced myself to go into the depths of my wardrobe (depths meaning: I love this, but it’s 3 sizes off what I wear and there’s no need to hang onto it in case I lose weight) and donated several beloved pieces for a Red Cross initiative. This wasn’t exactly easy. However, I think I have found my surprise nemesis. Books and magazines. It has come to my attention that I collect magazines. I never knew I collected them, but judging from the piles of years out of date publications – I’m a hoarder. Yikes! I pulled them out from every corner I had just managed to stuff them after reading. I flipped through them all to make sure I had indeed read it (yes – all of them), tore out any wow-me recipes and begrudgingly put them in the bin. There were a lot. And I am still finding them! As for the next half of this month, well, I will be doing that day-by-day.

As for the wonderful people who decided to join me, I’m linking to you and asking you: How’s it going?

Janet

365 Days of New

Ray

Unexpected in Common Hours

I would really love for anyone else who feels inspired to join us in the challenge, to join in! There are no requirements like reblogging or even posting about it yourself. Just 1 thing a day on the journey to a cleaner, simpler, happier lifestyle.

How are you controlling your clutter?

-Mliae
*Photo sourced via Pixabay