For the past year and half I’ve been slowly going through our unwanted stuff, and what’s still valuable, selling on eBay or donating it. Deciding to become a stay at home mom, I knew I wanted and needed to still find ways to earn and create so this seemed like a good way to achieve part of that. Surprisingly I was able to earn several thousand dollars in a year selling mostly my old work clothes. Mind you, it was tedious and time consuming but it felt good seeing some of the money spent on so many clothes come back to us. While working through minimizing my wardrobe, I was also looking at reducing our costs by implementing a budget and eliminating frivolous expenses and spending. For example, we discontinued our satellite radio, reduced our cable plan, and changed our insurance just to name a few. Reading blogs like Mr Money Mustache and Early Retirement Extreme really opened my eyes to a totally new concept regarding money, savings, and spending habits. There are so many ideas out there for living a financial life that feels right for you. I just wished we’d have stumbled upon some of these sooner. Like, saving as much as possible in our 20’s and learning to live on a modest income that could have since been generated with investing in the market… ergo setting us up for early retirement!
As I worked through things, it became more and more clear how careless we’d been with our money. Spending was out of control and our credit card debt was embarrassing. We used our savings to pay down most of it and started keeping track of all our expenses. I was nervous as first and worried about feeling restricted but actually found the opposite to be true! Living on a budget was freeing. I no longer worried if we could afford something. I knew exactly how much money we had and what we’d been spending. It took all the guess work out of making larger purchases. We started using one credit card for all our purchases which we pay off at the end of the month and earn cash back rewards that we started using for dining out and clothing purchases! At the time, I didn’t know we were embarking on a minimalist journey but after a couple weeks of reading up on the concept that’s exactly where we’ve been heading.
Reading and studying about minimalism has given me new inspiration to pare down even more and permission to let go of old ways of thinking that no longer serve me. I’ve become completely obsessed with the concept. Just this week I’ve been able to tackle our over flow room in a major way, selling an old floor lamp, donating old clothes, and moving no longer used decor out into the garage for an up coming garage sale. With each bag, lamp shade, candle holder, and broken toy I carried out the door my elation grew! I feel lighter each day I work on decluttering. You know that ahh ha feeling? When something clicks? It’s the best! So excited to continue this journey of simplifying our life and learning about how others have done the same! I’m currently reading the minimalist’s blog and just finished an ebook by Miss Minimalist. These writings are fascinating and inspiring, helping me to continue working through recognizing my attachment to stuff and realizing that is not the real source of my happiness and joy. Has anyone else stumbled across this concept? Are you implementing any of these ideas currently in your life? I’d love to hear about it!