I caught myself almost undoing some of my de-cluttering progress yesterday. But just in time, avoided some needless purchasing.
@TheFrankFlyer was doing some online shopping and texted me a link to a quite lovely dusty blue cap. Perfect for the summer, I immediately imagined myself wearing it out and about and thought ‘I need this’.
Moments later, I realised I had absolutely no need for another cap and asked him to remove it from the basket. Saying it aloud was the helpful bit: “I might like it, and really want it, but I don’t need it”. I have one head, albeit large: how many caps do I realistically need?
We’d spent four hours sorting through clothing just days before and I wanted to continue to trend of minimising for as long as possible. And a quick review of the caps in situ revealed two navy caps, a black one and assorted shades in between. The very last thing is another hat.
Rather than feeling smug or complacent, it made me think about all the other opportunities I’d missed. Getting caught up in the thrill of shopping, of deciding I needed something and then just adding to the already large pile of belongings. The lesson for me? A focus on simplicity and minimalism takes vigilance as well as the periodic de-cluttering.
Otherwise, it’s just an unsustainable cycle of accumulation and removal, that’s costing me time, energy and money. I’m realising that it needs to be more than ‘one in, one out’ and more like ‘none in’ for the foreseeable future. Too much ‘stuff’ can be overwhelming and to me, leads to anxiety about where it is, how it is and how I’ll use it.
This morning, it hit me: how can someone who gleefully spends so much of his time naked need so many clothes? Don’t worry, the irony isn’t lost on me. I don’t wear suits to work, don’t need formal wear of any kind and am the kind of person just crying out for some kind of ‘capsule wardrobe’. The thoughtless accumulation of clothing is just a habit. One that can be replaced with something more helpful, more sustainable and less likely to lead to feelings of overwhelm.