How do you maintain a simplicity? I have thought about this topic a lot, because as we go through life even after we declutter, things creep back into our lives. Our hobbies will change, and our body size will change, and our kids will grow. We may find ourselves moving to a different climate or to a different lifestyle all together. This is something that is simply unavoidable. We will have to let go of things, and then re-accumulate them, this is just part of life.
I find that the best thing is to accept that this is the case, and just to simply be intentional with what you are buying, so that when these changes come up you are not wasting too much money. I have found that for many of our changes in life we buy way more than is necessary. This includes getting married, and having a baby. We do not have to buy all the things that everyone tells us to buy for these major events. You will be ok not having everything that everyone else has.
Remember the Reason You Started in The First Place
Why did you decide to live simply in the first place? Life can really distract us from what is most important. The daily tasks that we have to do as well as all of the phones, TVs, and computers distract us. It can become overwhelming and really suck away our time.
I always know that if I am not spending time reading my Bible and with God that my priorities can become completely misaligned. So it really helps me to go to God first, and then to refocus my thoughts. Having all the distractions of all the excess stuff, a super busy schedule, and too much screen time can really take away from my priorities. So if all of those things are distracting me again I know that I have forgotten my priorities.
It’s OK to Own Things You Use
I have been so frustrated lately with all the incoming things for homeschooling, gardening, and canning that I have to realize that it’s simply ok. This is the stage of life we are in now. We do need things for gardening, homeschooling, and canning that we otherwise would not need. We need things sometimes to accomplish a task. It is ok to have things you need to use.
I am continually going through our home as I clean areas to see if there are things that we can let go that no longer serve the point in life that are at. It is very easy for me to do this now, since I have gone through everything multiple times. I am very aware of what we have and don’t have, which is nice.
We are soon going to move our baby into the room with our two other boys. They will all three share a room. I have been logistically thinking for awhile now how this will work. I have come up with a solution, that I think will work well. Sometimes to fit into a small space or home you have to make decisions about what is important to you. If you only have so much space you can only fit so many things in this room. Does that limit what you can have? Yes! This is a good thing in my opinion.
Having just the right size house helps you to Maintain
When we have too much space in our homes to fill things with it can become a problem. You will continue to try fill that space. Having smaller home helps me to maintain a more simple life. My boys will be sharing a room which means they have to limit the possessions they can own, but they love that they can share a room.
I love that I can maintain my home much easier than if we had a very large space to fill. Something we don’t have is a shed. We have kind of purposefully not had a shed for a long time, because we know that those can get filled with all kinds of junk. When we do get a shed, because with all the gardening supplies we kind of need one now. We will be getting a very small shed. One that fits exactly what we need.
Keep a Box Handy for Donations
One thing that I keep around is a box or a trash bag for donations. I always have one that I am slowly filling up over time to take to the charity shop. I also have one that I use for filling up with items to sell. Once they are filled up we will then take them to be donated or sold. This gives me an easy way to just throw something in when I find an item that we no longer need. I find that I at least have to donate one box or bag a month. I hope that one day it becomes much less as we become better at bringing in less.
Quit Buying Stuff
One thing that is super important to keeping a home more simple is to realize that you don’t need to own the latest things. You don’t need to buy the newest technology. You can use the stuff you have, most of the time, unless it breaks. We are not always the best at this, but we have overtime been learning this more and more.
Also, sometimes it is helpful to borrow something from someone instead of always buying it. People are usually more than happy to lend it to you, and you can promptly give it back when you are done. This keeps you from buying another item you will maybe only use one time. This is great for building materials or lawn items. My sister recently borrowed a tiller from a neighbor. They were happy to let her use it, and they had barely used it themselves.
I am guilty of buying things out of boredom or just out of pure habit. It is not something I am proud of, and it’s a habit that I have been trying to quit. This is something that I have slowly gotten better at over time. I will ask myself if something is necessary before I buy it now. I will also try to see if there is another item that we currently own that would work. Also giving yourself a few days to a month to decide on purchasing something often times will show if it is necessary for you to buy it. This cuts down on impulse purchases.
You only get one life to live. Make sure that what you spend your time on is worth it. I would much rather work in the garden than spend time on my phone. This time spent on my garden helps me to grow food that we can then eat. This saves us money in the long run, because we don’t have to buy it at the store. With rising prices this is a huge plus, and I did not waste time on my phone.
If you want to have more time to spend on things you want to do you have to cut out the things that don’t matter. It is simple math you only get 24 hours a day just like everyone that ever lived. You have just as much time as Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Abraham Lincoln, Billy Graham, Elisabeth Elliot, and the list goes on and on. I constantly have to remind myself that. It is a battle of our attention, and directing it to what is important. For me God is the most important thing to me. If I am not making time for Him then where is that time being used?