Posts in Minimalism
Loved Marie Kondo? You're Going to Love Swedish Death Cleaning

So you’ve watched Marie Kondo’s show. You’ve read “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and her more recent release, “Spark Joy”.

You’re following her on Instagram, and have decluttered your home. You’ve mastered the art of folding clothing, thrown out bags and bags of trash and made several trips to the local donation center.

What do you do now?

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Bringing Home New Items after the Marie Kondo Method

an often-missed anecdote in The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up is where Marie Kondo talks about her clients that have completed the decluttering process have fallen in love with their homes - and most importantly are bringing new items into their homes.

This is key. Marie Kondo isn’t tell you to live a minimalist or aesthetic lifestyle. Far from it, to be honest. She’s really just helping to recalibrate your compass when it comes to your possessions and purchases.

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Marie Kondo isn't Telling You to Get Rid Of Your Books - But Maybe You Should

So people are in a tizzy with the new Marie Kondo Netflix series in which Marie Kondo allegedly says “keep fewer than 30 books”.

*Cue bibliophiles screaming in rage*

Put down your Harry Potter series for a moment and let’s talk about this rationally.

I would like to point out that this meme is an unfortunate bastardization of the actual decluttering process in “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up”.

Nowhere does KonMari actually say that you have to get rid of books. In fact, the only thing she says is that you have to use her process with your books, ensuring you only keep the ones that bring you joy.

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What to do if You're Just Starting Out with Marie Kondo

Okay, so you’ve watched the Netflix series by Marie Kondo.

You’ve bought her book “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” and maybe even her “Spark Joy” (the second volume that further explains the decluttering process).

You’re inspired, intrigued and motivated.

You’ve started using Japanese terms like komono and tokimeku to describe the process.

You are interested in living a happier, more decluttered life in a place with things that spark joy with you.

This is great, but one thing that isn’t mentioned is a very important step in the process.

Where do you begin?

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What is Hygge? (And Why November is the Perfect Time to Practice It)

You may have heard about this term HYGGE. It’s gaining in popularity on the internet even though the concept isn’t exactly new.

So what is hygge?

Hygge (pronounced “hoo-gah” for all of us that aren’t either native Dutch speakers or haven’t seen Frozen on Broadway yet) is the Danish word for a feeling or a moment that is cosy, special, warm and magical.

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A Minimal Thanksgiving: 10 Things to Check and Clean Before the Big Day

Hi all!

In just a few short weeks, we know that we’re going to be cooking the biggest meal of the year at our home - the big T-day feast.

We want to make sure that we are able to spend a lot of time with our guests and enjoying the day, so we do as much as we can to make that a priority - that’s the focusing part of minimalism on what is important.

Secondly, we put food in high importance - but not at the expense of spending time with our guests. That’s why we are doing as much planning that we can to ensure that things go easily and smoothly.

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What Does Minimalism Do?

Alright, so we talk about minimalism a lot here. And you may be totally on board with minimalism, and love everything we talk about.

But, you may have a burning question.

What exactly is minimalism?

You see, that’s a big difficult - or complicated at least because minimalism is a personal thing.

I can’t necessarily tell you what minimalism is, because it is defined by your life and what is important to you.

Minimalism isn’t really a lifestyle, although we do refer to it as such. Rather, it is a way of thinking that is totally dependent on your life.

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Lessons from Buddha: On Suffering and Letting Go

Do you remember the Buddhist saying that the origin of suffering is attachment?

You may have read it somewhere before. I’ve seen it as an inspirational quote and discussed by friends who are Buddhists, but I never really understood what it meant.

    By attachment, we mean the desire to have something. Status, money, physical items, prestige. Or conversely, the aversion to something - physical pain, certain emotions, certain situations or people.

    To desire or to be averse to something is to be human - we all have dreamed of what it would be like to have limitless means, a new outfit for every day and perfect hair days every day,

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5 Tips for a Minimalist (and Happy) Halloween

Alright, you’ve carved the pumpkins, you’ve stocked upon candy for the trick-or-treaters, have the kids’ costumes all finished, have your costume ready to go and you’re ready to survive the Halloween holiday.

Or maybe not.

Maybe you haven’t gotten any of those things accomplished, and the only thing you’ve done is stress eat three Reese’s peanut butter pumpkins *raises hand*.

Hey, the holidays are stressful - and Halloween is no exception. Except that Halloween, out of all the holidays, is the one that’s supposed to be fun.

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The Minimalist Dog Owner's Guide

Are you a dog lover? We definitely are. And while our dogs aren’t a major source of clutter or confusion, they can be a handful sometimes. In our previous home, it sometimes felt like they were occupying a major percentage of the home, interfering with our ability to keep things clean.

After we moved to our new place, we didn’t want that to be the case. After decluttering and organizing, we came upon some strategies that made our dog-owner lifestyle fit with our minimalist lifestyle perfectly. We wanted to share them with you so that you can enjoy your canine companions without feeling cluttered or stressed!

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Being a Minimalist in a Maximalist World

Here’s the thing - we live in a maximalist world.

We live in the world of supersize, upgraded, extra options and filters and add-ons. We celebrate Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Veteran’s Day - with sales and purchases. We have huge homes, huge garages with pools and outdoor patios and fire pits. We think that bigger is better, or at least expensive is better, or that more or more crazy is better.

Even those of us who cherish experiences over things still are guilty of getting swept up into the maximalist lifestyle. It’s not enough to just travel, but you have to travel to the perfect spot and get the perfect selfie and eat at the trendiest restaurant and experience all the things.

What if instead of chasing those things or bigger and better, we chose… not to?

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5 Easy Ways to Practice Mindfulness

Life gets busy.

Especially this time of year, it’s like life is suddenly on fast forward. Holidays and school and events and obligations all start up again this time of year.

It’s easy to get caught up in the stresses of life.

It’s easy to get wrapped up in the whirlwind of obligations, checking your boxes and going through a daily routine of busy-busy-busy-ness.

And if you’re trying to live a serene, mindful life, it can be hard sometimes to do the things that allow you to be mindful.

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Minimalism is a Journey - Not a Destination

Back when I started minimalism, I had my eye set on a goal. At the time, I was dead set on it - having a spotless,  completely clean home with nothing dirty or broken or cheap looking in it. I would walk outside and listen to the birds chirp and smile as the sun shone on my face. I would also have a perfect hair day, find the perfect spot in the coffee shop to sit, and a small baby would laugh and chortle at the sight of me.

I’ll be honest - only a few of those things actually happened (the baby did laugh and chortle, but I’m not sure if it was the sight of my face or if it was gas). 

But along the way, I realized something - I was growing. Changing and evolving as I moved further into minimalism. 

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8 Minimalist Habits I've Learned Since Living in a Small Space

Did you know the average American lives in a 2000 square foot home? I know that isn’t most New York apartments, but that’s a pretty decently sized home.

When we made the decision to move to a smaller home of 998 square feet from a home of 2600 square feet, we knew that we would have to change the way we were living. Part of what we wanted to do was also live a more minimalist lifestyle - to be able to spend more time on the things we loved, and less time decluttering, organizing and cleaning.

We’ve been living minimally for around a year now, and have learned some habits that help to keep our lives happy and our home minimalist, and I wanted to share them with you to help in your pursuit of living a more minimalist life.

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10 Things we Learned from Marie Kondo

We are big fans of Marie Kondo and her book ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’. Not just because she’s just so wonderful, or that her book is so succint and easy to understand - but because it is a system that works so well.

While she’s not the only source of learning how to declutter and live a minimalist life, she does it in a way that just is so easy and so simple.

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10 Tips for Decluttering your Kitchen

In our house, the kitchen is probably one of the areas that we spend the most time in. Whether we’re cooking or drinking coffee or baking or putting away groceries, it’s a very high traffic area, which is one of the reasons why it’s so important for it to be decluttered.

When your kitchen is decluttered, it makes life easier. Cooking dinner, doing dishes and keeping it clean is less of a hassle, and it provides more space for you to work without having to bump into things or rifle through drawers.

Having just decluttered our kitchen, here are some things that we discovered that are both easy and powerful ways of making your kitchen a tidy and organized place.

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A Minimalist October and Halloween

We used to decorate the CRAP out of our home for Halloween - think Martha Stewart going nuts in a very small home.

But this past year, we looked at the buckets of plastic pumpkins, paper mache cats and skeletons and rethought our decorating. I mean, they’re fun, and they help you get into the mood, and Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays of the year.

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