Most of you have probably heard the buzz about Marie Kondo's new Netflix series, Tidying Up, where the tidying expert helps families simplify and organize their lives. Since the show aired there has been a significant movement of influencers and brands promoting the idea of simplifying your life. I for one am beyond excited about it. I love seeing products, resources and ideas surrounding minimalism. The notion that creating simplicity in your life brings joy, reduces stress, and allows you to find alignment should be enough for everyone to hop on board.
Here are three ways you can simplify your life and discover the benefits that will follow:
1. Create a Capsule Wardrobe
Image via Today Show
A capsule wardrobe is essentially a minimized wardrobe collection consisting of only 30-40 pieces that can easily be mixed and matched. You can create a capsule for each season, but only bring one out at a time. To start the minimizing process, you will need to go through every article of clothing, each accessory, and all of your shoes. Take everything out of the closet and out of dresser drawers and pile it on the middle of your bed. This can be a huge awakening to people. Seeing the mass amount of "stuff" accumulated into a pile is eye opening to how much we hold onto. Stuff that doesn't serve us or bring us joy. Stuff that is taking up space in our closets. Stuff that is just - stuff.
Once everything is out, go through each item deciding whether it fits into your capsule or if it is something you can get rid of. If you haven't worn it in the last 12 months, that is a pretty good indication that it isn't something you need to keep. If it doesn't fit and hasn't fit for a while, it needs to go. If it has stains, holes, or too much wear...it's gone. You should look at the item and feel joy. If not, get rid of it!
Once you have the pile of items you will actually wear and use, organize the items into seasons. One of your capsules will go back into the closet and dresser, the other items need to be stored neatly in bins. Rotate the items by season. If you buy something new that fits into your capsule, consider letting an item go. Typically, a capsule wardrobe is made up of high quality items that are timeless. Items that will hold up, mix and match with each other easily, and don't scream #currentlytrending.
2. Audit Your Time
Another way to simplify your life is to take control of where you spend your time. Take an afternoon and audit the last 3 - 6 months of your life. What did you commit to? Where did you overextend yourself? What did you do that brought you happiness? Where did you find you served others well, and where did you feel served? Make a list of things you loved and that you want to do more of. Make a list of things that stressed you out and that you never want to do again. Once you have your lists, evaluate what changes you can make moving forward. Maybe you committed to a volunteer position that is taking you away from evenings with your family and it's bringing you more guilt than it is joy. It's okay to let it go. This process of auditing your time is huge. It's okay to do more of what you love and less of what you don't. You will be a better spouse, parent, employee, boss, leader, friend, etc. if you are showing up in relationships refreshed, instead of running yourself ragged.
3. Declutter Your Home and Car
Image via LuxDeco
The act of decluttering your home and car is powerful. This is similar to the wardrobe organization process. Go through each room in your home (and vehicle) and eliminate anything that you do not need, that doesn't bring you joy, that doesn't work or is broken, that is expired, etc. Less is more. If you can keep only the items that you need and love, you will have more space and less clutter. If you have been hoarding a remote that goes to a tv you no longer own, toss it! If you have drawers full of papers and miscellaneous items and you cringe every time you open it - go through it and only keep what you absolutely have to. This is a lengthy process, and it isn't always easy, but if you do it you will find so much more joy when you enter a room. Just take it room by room. Drawer by drawer. There is something therapeutic about saying goodbye to items that no longer serve you. Marie Kondo suggests that when you are getting rid of an item and you are having a hard time letting go, you should "thank" the item(s) for the purpose they once served as you put them in the discard pile. This practice will fill you with an attitude of gratitude and gives a fresh perspective on what really means something to you and what is just taking up space in your home.
Start making theses changes today and you will see a significant difference in your stress level, your finances, and your overall outlook on life. Simply, simplify.