Thursday, July 7, 2011

From Decluttering to Minimalizing

Over the weekend I tamed / thinned out / decluttered my closet by following my 5 Steps to Clearing Out Your Closet as posted last week and spent two days clearing things out.

Day 1: Everything Easy.  Old / Ill-Fitting / Ugly / Just-Don't-Like-It-Anymore clothing. I filled about 4 garbage bags.  Yes.  4! Full!

Day 2: The Hard Stuff. I decided to take my decluttering a step further into minimalist territory.  I asked myself what it was I truly need; how much clothing I have to have in my closet to be happy.  On day 2 I managed to get rid of:

6 dresses; 12 bottoms; 10 tops; 3 pairs of shoes; and 8 accessories. EVERYTHING IN THIS PICTURE! 
The bags I filled with donate/throw away clothing aren't pictured here, and I decided not to count those towards my total amount of stuff I managed to thin out.  Why? For me, this was more about learning to be happy with less, not getting rid of stuff I know I won't wear.

What I Learned:  

An interesting paradox:  Now that my closet has been slimmed down, I actually feel like I have more clothing options.  Getting dressed is so much easier when you can go to your closet and you love every piece, instead of being overwhelmed by underwhelming clothing.  It's as if the crap was totally blocking out all the great clothing I have.

So that's where my money goes: I need to start seriously thinking about what I'm buying before I throw money away.  I have a tendency to thrift shop, and this exercise made me realize I buy a lot of junky clothes.  Sure, that tee may only be $7, but I just threw away around 15 pieces of $5-10 clothing.   

Just when you think you're finished: The best decluttering doesn't happen in a day.  I cleaned my closet over the weekend, and this morning I went to my closet and found a few more things I could live without.  The best time to declutter is at the end of a season: if you didn't wear it that winter, time to move on.

I also read, "The Joy of Less" to motivate myself, I definitely recommend picking it up!

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