Today I’m sharing a guest post with you by Allie, a blogger over at Zippy Home Life.
Allie focuses on giving tips that help you live your best life. Life is busy, so she is always looking for ways to make it easier! On Zippy Home Life, you will learn more about increasing your productivity and simplifying everything…from chores to meal prep.
This is the second post in our summer series on how minimalism has changed so many people’s lives for the better. Each week we will be hearing from a different person who has adopted some aspect of the minimalist lifestyle.
Last week, I kicked off the series with a post about minimalism and mental health.
Not everyone who is writing for this series considers themselves hardcore minimalist, and that’s the way I wanted it. I wanted to show you that minimalism (to some degree) is for everyone! Minimalism has changed so many lives for the better when it’s been applied to an area of stress and overwhelm.
Today, Allie is sharing with us how minimalism made her more intentional with her money. This was a natural result of living a more minimalist lifestyle for me as well. Even if you don’t have money problems, most of us want to spend our money wisely. Because of that, I’m sure that you will be able to relate to Allie’s post!
How Minimalism Made Me More Intentional With Our Money
Have you ever felt like you’re just surrounded by stuff? One day, several years ago, I found myself looking around our home and wondering how we had accumulated so many things over the years. There were many items that we were storing in the home that we hadn’t touched in a long time, didn’t use on a regular basis, and frankly, were zapping the energy out of me and our space.
It made me realize that it was time to make a cognizant effort to really think about what needs to come into our home. (And what could be removed from it!) As a result, my effort to reduce clutter and simplify our lifestyle led to saving money as well.
Among the many benefits of minimalism, saving money has been one major benefit I’ve witnessed in my own life. And I’ve never heard of anyone being disappointed about saving money! In this post, I want to share with you some ways that minimalism made me more intentional with our money.
Home Decor and Household Goods
One of the ways minimalism made me more intentional with our money was in regards to home decor. When I was in my early 20s, I thought nothing of going to Target or Walmart once a week or so and purchasing whatever I wanted. I’d buy clothes, shoes, makeup, or other toiletries and always purchase things for our house.
Shopping was sort of a pastime. I had more kitchen gadgets than I could ever use! Once I had my epiphany around being tired of all of our stuff, I realized that minimalism could help me stop buying things we don’t even need.
That’s not to say that I never buy things for our home now, but I definitely purchase things more purposefully. I think about if the item is needed, and how it will be used. Also, I focus a bit more on quality than I used to before. I realized that buying higher quality prevents me from having to re-purchase and replace things every couple of years or so.
What we do have as home decor works well for us. And now, when I do find myself at Target or another store with home decor, I don’t have an impulse to just purchase things for the sake of buying.
I find myself thoughtfully considering the item, and asking myself how I’ll use it. I spend time examining its functionality and determining if it’s of good quality. Finally, I make a decision on if that item deserves a place in our home.
Another way minimalism made me more intentional with our money was with trendy items.
Now that I’m in my mid-30s, I’ve learned a lot over the past twenty years about my style preferences. When I was a bit younger, I did have some periods of experimenting with trendier makeup looks or clothing. There have still been times in my adulthood when I desired to dress up a little bit more. But, I have always gravitated back to a more casual, jeans and a t-shirt, natural makeup look.
So, I decided a long time ago to buy clothes that I’m comfortable in, instead of purchasing clothing that just isn’t me. I use makeup that enhances my features but doesn’t detract from them. With my clothing, I’ve chosen to purchase items that are versatile, of decent quality, and are timeless. I also don’t need to buy a lot of various makeup items.
The plus side to this is that because I’m not purchasing clothing all the time, my clothing purchases last longer. And, I only keep on hand what I need and use what I have.
It took some trial and error to build my preferences and to decide to be happy with what I’ve always gravitated toward. But in the end, I’m happy that I have a personalized collection of things that work for me.
My last example of how minimalism made me more intentional with our money has to do with hobbies. Hobbies are a great way to pass the time, but the cost of supplies and parts for some hobbies can really add up!
My Husband’s Hobbies
My husband races remote control cars. It got to the point where he had accumulated more things than he could use and had superfluous parts. He decided to narrow down his focus to the cars he really likes and work well for him. So, he sold the rest of the cars and parts that hadn’t worked out so well (or he just didn’t have time to use them).
He also began a system of “one-in, one-out”. So he decided that for each new car or part he purchased, he’d sell another one in it’s place. This drastically reduced the amount of clutter he had. Not only that but his new parts or cars were basically paying for themselves since he would sell the old ones before purchasing new ones!
My Own Hobbies
And because minimalism made me more intentional with our money, I was able to cut back on the paper-crafting items I had been purchasing and accumulated. I used to scrapbook, make homemade cards, and do other papercrafts. It is very easy to accumulate a large number of supplies when doing these sorts of crafts!
At one point, we had moved from a house to an apartment and then back to a house. I realized that lugging all of these things around when I wasn’t actively paper-crafting anymore was sort of pointless. So I donated a lot of my supplies, but not everything. I did keep some of the items that I thought would come in handy in the future.
Either way, I’m no longer hanging onto crafting supplies for a hobby that I no longer partake in. This is a freeing feeling in and of itself!
Really, reevaluating our hobbies helped us save time and money, as well as reduce that overwhelming feeling of being surrounded by so much “stuff”.
Over time, minimalism made me more intentional with our money. Not only that, but I was able to minimize the amount of stuff I had and the money I spent on household goods, trendy items, and hobbies. I am so thankful I discovered that living a more minimal lifestyle could save me time, money, and stress.