Over the past year or so I’ve been on a journey to reduce my quantity of possessions and to live with a minimal amount of physical objects. I think I would agree with most people who think being a minimalist is very strange behavior, but with great support from close friends and family, I started ridding my life of extra stuff with the goal of being unbridled, lightweight, and free.
I started by using an old brown bag from a clothing retailer and doing an initial scrape of shirts, pants, shorts, belts, and shoes that no longer fit me. I used a principle that I learned while watching What Not to Wear on a sick day at home: own clothes that fit you now and not for what you want to become. With this first bag of stuff, I ran over to Goodwill and donated them. It felt really good to give some breathing room to my closet and to know that others would benefit from my perfectly fine clothing.
Fast forward to today, and I’m much further than when I began, but I’m nowhere near my final quantity of 150 things.
Instead of creating goals for the year, I’d like to operate from a core set of pillars and have goals eminate from each of them. For example, one of my pillars is going to be generosity, which along with the pillar of flexibility aligns very nicely to my movement of becoming a minimalist.
One of the tactics I’ll be starting this weekend is the Donation Sunday approach as proposed by Danny Dover in his blog post and video called “How to Become a Minimalist”. (Fast forward to the 4:16 mark for more information on Donation Sundays.) Danny has been an inspiration for me because of his authenticity, transparency, and optimism. He’s given me a lot of great ideas!
As a Christian, I believe my time will be better spent in ministry, fellowship, prayer, meditation, and learning, rather than in ownership, maintenance, or acquisition. It’s a journey—and let’s be honest—somewhat of a game. But I think it’s a fun challenge that has a positive benefit, too!