Three Ways I’m Minimising in June

30 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 2 bags

Even after a year and a half of paring down my belongings, I still feel like I have so much stuff. Paper must be a real epidemic, I have so much of it still, despite my efforts. In an effort to downsize, I spent this month addressing paper clutter.

  1. Books. I have a real attachment to books. I have always found them to be very precious. For a long time I kept every book I read. However, recently it dawned on me that it was a bit silly to own things I don’t love. I decided it was time to go through my book collection and discard those I wasn’t going to read again. This was actually a difficult process. Often objects we own help define who we are. I owned books by critically acclaimed authors that I didn’t actually enjoy, but held onto them because they helped define me as some sort of well-read person. Anyway, I passed all those books onto friends, and now I own mostly just the books I truly love and would read again.
  2. Art supplies. I have always been creative and have spent a lot of time drawing and painting. This has not been the case over the last year though. It’s not the first time I’ve gone through a lack of enthusiasm for art. I decided it was time to get rid of those half used acrylics, watercolours, worn out brushes and abandoned canvases and card, as art does not feel like something I have any interest in right now. Art supplies are not too expensive and I’ll sure be able to get more if the desire strikes at some time in the future.
  3. Memorabilia. The topic of nostalgia comes up often when I write about decluttering. I used to collect artefacts associated with things I’d done, people I’d met, and places I’d gone. I still have a folder where I keep some of these things, but I did recently minimise this collection. I had some maps of US national parks that I’d collected while on the road. Yosemite, Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Death Valley. I hold these places and the adventures I had there so dear, but the maps needed to go.

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The things I kept

 

It is not always so simple to minimise paper, because the information stored on it can be important or valuable. If you know you need to keep something important, consider digitising. Bills, photos, cards, letters and just about anything else on paper can be either scanned or photographed and stored in the magical invisible world of data.


35 thoughts on “Three Ways I’m Minimising in June

  1. Oh, the agony! So, so difficult. I struggled for the space of three years, over and again on this topic and finally realised the only books I return to read are my beloved classics. I have since donated all the rest and have acquired a carefully curated selection of vintage leather bound classics. These I do treasure and reach for often.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi there, another thought-provoking post! I had an ‘ouch’ moment when I read about holding on to books that could help define me. I’m definitely guilty of that. You’ve inspired me to go through my books this weekend and let go some of the worthier books that I know I won’t reach for again. Thanks so much 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Hello! Love the concept and the kitty! And as it happens, June is a big declutter month for me as well, now that I’ve finally taken (and passed!) my licensing exam. I share your three challenges – books, art supplies, and memorabilia. In the past I’ve found CLEAR YOUR CLUTTER WITH FENG SHUI helpful, and more recently THE JOY OF LESS. Especially potent is the concept that less “stuff” is more space for movement and the making of new memories. In terms of digitizing, I do think it’s important to keep in mind that what becomes immaterial to us “in the cloud” actually does have a very material impact on the world, in the form of enormous buildings with enormous cooling systems to maintain all that electronic data. Going paperless unfortunately just changes the nature of the significant environmental impact.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I enjoyed reading your post, always find them intriguing! I donated more books last weekend, mostly reference/ non fiction. When I moved to the cottage, almost three years ago, I lugged about 200+ books with me, that figure is now probably down to 30. People often become trapped with owning physical objects, thinking these inanimate objects define them, this is certainly not the case, so, good for you for letting go!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I love donating my old books! I have a book obsession, so one thing that helped me to let the ones I didn’t love go was gifting them, or donating them to a lending library at our local park. The idea that someone else might read it after me and love it made me happy to see them go.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. When we gave up all our stuff to travel, my books were the hardest thing to get rid of. Now I love the concept of sharing books – buying from second hand shops, leaving them somewhere for others to read, giving them to friends, or just giving them back to charity shops. I like thinking of all the others who’ve read and will read it – before the book was useless – dead – just sitting on my shelf.

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  7. Feeling you… I use a lot of paper… I have a lot of books and I cant imagine making notes differently than in my note book. I always console myself thinking of these huuuuge electric plants that supplies ebooks with energy and i really dont know what is more/less ecological…. Thanks for sharing, have a good weekend!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. My cat looks just like yours. 🙂

    By the way, I’m also living with 30 items of clothing, 1 pair of vans, 1 pair of sneakers, and a pair of dress shoes. That’s about it.

    I’ll put up a post of all my stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m very much a bookworm so that’s still a tough area for me to declutter. I’m hoping to spend a good chunk of July reading books that are already on my shelves so I can free up space. I already have one dedicated shelf to ‘read it or toss it.’

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m having a terrible time getting rid of old CDs. They were at my mom’s place for years, and now she found them. I haven’t touched them in ages, but it’s become surprisingly hard to go through them. Paper I can sort through with no qualms.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I had lots of books for years and it was very hard to get rid off. Moving places every every time especially when living with a Civil Engineer and you have move anytime when the contracts up. I couldn’t bear to give my books away but sadly i had to do so at the local bookshop at least someone else will have a chance to enjoy them.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. i have slightly more books than bookshelf space – my mantra is NEVER to buy or build more storage – downsize until what i have fits the allotted space. This week, i’ve gathered all the sewing kits, supplies, thread, scissors, etc ad nauseum of my grandma’s, mother-in-law’s, and her mother-in-law’s then sorting and combining like items, then reassemble the usable items into the three sewing kits and hope to find a young 4-Her who would like a start with sewing supplies for a project. That stuff will never see the light of day otherwise – i do not sew. I think i’ll post a teaser on Facebook and see if i can generate some interest.

    Like

  13. I love your kitty! Mine always want in on the action, too! It was really hard for me to get rid of my books because I always envisioned myself having a library in my dream home, but I don’t have the same unnecessary expectations for my life anymore.

    Lisa

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Well! I’m really into minimalising my life in all the stuff that could be digitalized… …As books!!! But for stuff as clothes I’m not :/

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I love my books so much, even though I have a lot of books I didn’t read because I actually didn’t like them. Can not throw them away! But might actually try.
    Your blog really inspires me ^^

    Like

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