Sunday, November 11, 2012

After Decluttering Comes Mindfulness, or Never Shop Again

Before our current renovation I spent about six months decluttering to remove approximately half of our possessions so that we could fill up our house with plasterboard, drop saws, cans of paint and a set of stairs that came in kit form. It went against all my natural hoarding instincts to get rid of all those really indispensable treasures, but I honestly can't remember any of them now that they are gone.

Now that we are (mostly) done with renovating and refilling our house with furniture and stuff that was packed in boxes, we are having to be incredibly tough on our acquisitive instincts. If there is no cupboard space for it, it has to go. I now have a smaller, but much nicer kitchen. All the storage space is taken up, and there is simply no room for any new kitchen doohickeys. Well, I could buy a new spatula, but not the salad spinner I was thinking would be nice, unless I get rid of something else that is the size of a salad spinner. While I contemplate what else we could do without, I continue to pat the lettuce dry in a tea towel.

I moved out of home at nineteen with hardly any stuff, and have spent twenty years accumulating it, with the happy assistance of family and friends. Now we realise, we're kind of done with stuff. We're going to need to replace towels and broken crockery, but lots of our stuff will last longer than we will. So barring the house burning down, I can contemplate a future without shopping. I am very happy about that.

All we have to do now is somehow dispose of a shed full of boxes that we haven't unpacked yet. Maybe we could just burn it down...

5 comments:

e / dig in said...

it's a really admirable sentiment. i go thru phases. i'm currently in a "can't be bothered shopping, what's the point in spending money" - as i am paying for a (necessary) new car! i'm like this with clothes, especially - when i pack away the winter woollies and pull out the summer chothes, i see how little of the winter stuff i wore (because i had so much to choose from) and how much summer stuff i have. which all makes me sound much more spendy than i really am, but... the skirt i am wearing right now i made in the early 90s, so really i have a lot simply from over the years. but a really great post - to remind us to really question each acquisition

Jo said...

Isn't it amazing how even the most thrifty person accumulates stuff in our society? I would say I don't buy much, and I don't compared to some, but clearly all that stuff got into my house somehow...

GretchenJoanna said...

ha ha! What a wild and wonderful thought, an insanely idealistic thought, I'd say, to have a future without shopping. But I'm glad you propose the idea, it's such a worthy and motivating goal. I still have some boxes I haven't unpacked since we moved into our remodeled kitchen over two years ago.

Jo said...

Gretchen Joanna, I should write a list of the things I've bought since I wrote this post... well, it's worth trying...

Clarence Rios said...

One of the good things that come with taking the first step to de-cluttering is the realization you’ll get, once you began going over those stuff that’s been around and useless for a long time. It will give you a new sense of consideration about the things you've accumulated over time. It’s good to know that the de-cluttering experience was very meaningful to you. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Clarence Rios @ Bins By Jo

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