Okay, let’s get something straight right at the beginning. This is not a blog post about how to store your stuff more efficiently. This is all about having less stuff. That’s right, it’s about throwing stuff away.
Part of minimalism, which I’ve been exploring in my own life these last few months, is living with less. This doesn’t mean building more shelving or uber-organizing my books. It means LIVING WITH LESS.
A simple concept with life-changing implications and many questions, the biggest of which is, how do you even begin to get rid of all your stuff?
Frankly, you have to face your mountain of clutter and be ruthless.
For instance, in the book, Simplify Your Space by Marcia Ramsland, she recommends the following tools to simplify your bedroom: a wastebasket, a recycling bin, and three boxes. One box is for things to keep. The other two boxes are for items to donate and sell. In For Packrats Only by Don Aslett, he outlines four steps to follow to ditch the junk.
- Recognize that junk is bad.
- Repent (Admit that your junk is hurting you, your energy, your bank account, and your relationships.)
- Remove the junk. Yes, perform the physical act of throwing things away.
- Refrain from bringing new junk into your life.
Get the picture?
Fortunately, there are dozens of titles that can help you on your way to a clutter-free life. These books outline plans of action, suggest tips for helping you decide what to keep and what to get rid of, and advice on how to deal with the emotional side of throwing things away. My favorites are listed below.
Personally, I found getting rid of stuff liberating, although, to be honest, so far my family is not quite on board yet. Stay tuned for the further adventures of a hopeful minimalist.
Throw Out Fifty Things : Clear the Clutter, Find Your Life by Gail Blanke
Never Too Busy to Cure Clutter : Simplify Your Life One Minute at a Time by Erin Rooney Doland
The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Decluttering by Regina Leeds
Winning the Clutter War by Sandra Felton
Conquering Clutter : Getting To The Bottom Of Clutter by Megan Francis
Decluttering Secrets : Tips And Tricks To Becoming Organized by Sally Munroe