There is more joy in owning less – a statement that is hard to believe in a society that tells us more is better. Anything that does not bring meaning, purpose, fulfillment, or lasting joy into your life should be donated or sold. We can help you with that – we can help you achieve that minimal life you’ve been aching for. Join us in this 30-Day Challenge!
30-DAY MINIMAL LIVING CHALLENGE
Day 1: Go through your inbox. Yup! You’re on your computer right now – just reading about how to start living minimally. If on day one of this challenge I told you to go through your closet, would you actually turn your computer off, get up, and start cleaning? Probably not. You’d probably “pin this for later” and never read this challenge again. But since you are already on your computer & minimal living is on your mind, let’s start living minimally by organizing your emails! Delete the spam, create folders, & unsubscribe to all of those newsletters you never read. Come on! Let’s start Day 1!
Day 2: Find two big boxes. If you don’t have the ability to get boxes, nice sized garbage bags will do just fine. Label one of them “Trash” and the other, “Donate”. If you are environmentally conscious (or you’d like to start), better get another box/bag and label that one “Recycle”. While you are on this journey of getting rid of stuff, be sure to use these containers & toss your unneeded items in the correct bag/box.
Day 3: Clean out your junk drawer. You have one, I know you do. Perhaps it’s a drawer in your kitchen? Your office? Perhaps a box of junk in your closet? Come on, that junk needs to go.
IF YOU HESITANT TO GET RID OF SOMETHING, ASK YOURSELF IF YOU’VE USED THE ITEM IN THE PAST 6 MONTHS TO A YEAR. IF THE ANSWER IS NO, THEN IT’S TIME FOR THAT TO GO.
Day 4: Unfriend. Yup. I said it. For some, this could be the hardest day of this challenge. But ask yourself, why does your mother’s friend whom you’ve only briefly said “hello” to at a party you attended four years ago really need to know what you ate for breakfast this morning? Facebook was started so we could connect with our friends – not to fish for the most likes & to get an ego boost every time you share a great looking selfie. A few years ago, I went from 800 friends to just under 80 & these are the steps I took:
-Have I talked to this person in person in the past 3 years? If yes, we stayed friends. If no…
-Would I actually want this person to know all of the details about my life? What my house looks like? What restaurants I routinely eat at? What hospital I birthed my child? You’d be surprised how much information you can get from just one photo (example: I had a friend who moved out of state & she shared a photo of her new house. All I had to do was type in the house number & the city she moved to and I was able to find her address, where she worked, and how much she paid for her new home.) Do you want a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend to know that much information about your life?
Don’t worry about hurting people’s feelings. You never talk to them anyways, right?
Day 5: Organize your dresser. Clean off the top, fold your shirts, toss those holy socks & those underwear you haven’t worn in years. Also, you should donate any items you haven’t worn in a while (I’m not talking about undergarments, I’m talking about pants & such).
Day 6: Clean under the sinks. Toss the empty bottles. Organize the cleaning supplies.
Day 7: Go through your medicine cabinet. Get rid of all the expired medication. Toss the old lotions you haven’t used. Yes, even the nail polish you only wore once because you hate the color, but you kept it anyway just in case you change your mind.
Day 8: Donate the clothes that don’t fit you. Don’t give in to the whole “Oh but I should keep it in case I loose 15 pounds”. How long have you kept clothes for the “just in case”. If you ever do lose that weight, you’ll end up buying new clothes anyways.
Day 9: Donate the clothes that you bought on a whim and only wore once. No, you are probably never going to wear it again. It’s just taking up space.
Day 10: Donate the clothes that you haven’t worn in ages. Regardless if they fit or not. Most of us end up wearing our favorite clothes over and over. The same two yoga pants, the same old tees, the one favorite bra…don’t believe the lie that you need tons of clothes when in reality, you only wear a few items in your closet.
Day 11: Donate the items that were gifted to you, but you have never used. Don’t worry about hurting someone’s feelings. If they aren’t being used, if you don’t need it, if you hate it, if it’s just taking up space…it doesn’t belong in your home.
Day 12: Go through your books. Okay. This one is hard for me & I don’t want to be a hypocrite. There are some books I haven’t touched in years but I’m keeping them in the event that I run into someone that could read it (I’m talking mostly about Christian books). But I do recommend donating those books that you only read once & will never read again (these are probably common fiction books).
Day 14: Go through your pantry. Any expired items should be tossed.
Day 15: Clean out your fridge. Check your condiments too…they are usually the least checked & most expired food in your fridge.
Day 16: Toys. If you have children, you probably have tons of toys in various areas of your home. Donate the items that they grew out of. If you’d like to teach them about minimalism, have them choose a few toys to get rid of as well.
Day 17: Clean that purse. We should be doing this more frequently, but I know plenty of us probably only clean our purses when we switch them out.
Day 18: Clean out your car. Wash it. Vacuum it out.
Day 19: Sort through receipts.
Day 20: Match all of your tubberware with it’s correct tops. Consider tossing the lost tops.
Day 21: Donate your shoes. Any shoes that are uncomfortable or hurt your feet do not belong in your closet.
Day 22: Clean that garage out. Organize boxes, toss the trash, donate un-used decorations, sweep the dust and dirt.
Day 23: Pick up your yard. If you have a yard to clean, be sure to sweep the driveway, pluck any weeds, and pop off wilted flowers (they make room for new flowers to grow).
Day 24: Organize your basement/storage area. This is probably a full day event & it could turn into a week long project if you don’t get down to business.
DON’T GET DISTRACTED BY ALL OF THE ITEMS YOU COME ACROSS – AND DON’T YOU DARE TRY TO KEEP THOSE ITEMS. THEY HAVE BEEN IN STORAGE FOR A LONG TIME & YOU FORGOT YOU EVEN HAD THEM. IT’S TIME TO GET RID OF IT.
Day 25: Go through your office. Wherever you keep your bills, paper, pens…it’s time to organize it. Go through & find the the pens that don’t work. Toss unimportant paperwork. Organize your bills & documents (The IRS recommends you keep potential tax paperwork for 7 years, so anything beyond that can be thrown away).
Day 26: Downsize your makeup bag. Wash your brushes & toss that old mascara.
Day 27: Organize your computer documents. File loose photos, delete documents that are taking up space, create folders for important items (and be sure to back up the things that you really need).
Day 28: Go through your coat closet. Donate old winter gear, get rid of coats and jackets, and ratty sweaters.
Day 29: Unplug for the day. Turn off the television, stay off of the internet…you don’t need it. And your friends who text you, it’s probably not that important. There are many who go through this minimal living challenge & end up canceling their cable, phone, & internet. You’ve been tricked into thinking it’s a necessity.
Day 30: Cleaning out the crap in your spiritual closet. You made it through 30 days & you were able to clean out the items in your earthly life. You can now clean out the stuff in your spiritual life. So give these things to God – the stresses & worries you battle with…the anxiety…it’s time to truly let go & live a minimal life.
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” –Matthew 6:19
If you’re hesitant to start this challenge, we’d like to know why. Feel free to leave a comment!
(Originally published on http://www.HisEndlessLove.com