living with less

Having few desires means satisfaction with what you have.

Making radical plans always has more ramifications that one first thinks.  I have this germ of an idea to convert an old school bus into a camper / RV / motor home, and / or find a great plot and construct a home / holiday home out of shipping containers.  One of the ramifications is that the amount of interior space is likely to be limited in either of those projects.

But, there is an axiom; You don’t need more space, you need less stuff…

Too many people spend money they haven’t earned, to buy things they don’t want, to impress people they don’t like.  ~  Will Rogers

Ergo, the first rule of living with less is to stop buying things you don’t really need.  A lot of us like buying new stuff: kitchen gadgets, clothes, pictures, ornaments and geegaws, books, and other sundry unnecessary crap.  Then we find our spare room and garage filled with the old stuff we have replaced with new stuff, and eventually we have to take all that old crap to the thrift store.

All this costs us time, money, stress, and heartache.  Buy stuff we don’t really need and our lives are filled with clutter, and clutter is incredibly stressful.  The simple answer is; ‘if you don’t absolutely need it, then don’t buy it’.  If there is no clean and empty space on your tables, kitchen counters, bookshelves, dressing table, desk, and in your bathroom, then you have far too much stuff.

Clutter, junk, piles of unused stuff, overflowing cupboards, a garage you can barely get your car into, a spare room full of more unused stuff… all this is bad for your physical, mental, and spiritual health.  If you can’t lose weight, you’re always tired, you’re always late for work ~ then clean up your clutter.

Instead of complications and clutter, consider simplicity and minimalism instead.

If one’s life is simple, contentment has to come.  Simplicity is extremely important for happiness.  Having few desires, feeling satisfied with what you have, is very vital: satisfaction with just enough… and shelter to protect yourself from the elements.  ~  The Dalai Lama

Simple living will benefit your physical, mental, and spiritual health in many ways.  Living simply declutters your life and your daily schedule ~ who knows if you live simply you may even make it into work on time.

Living simply with less stuff, living a clean and minimalistic lifestyle, well it isn’t something that you should attempt to achieve overnight, usually this kind of huge change takes time, effort, and determination.  Take little steps, at least to begin with.  Some good ideas are;

  1. Get rid of all your duplicates.  If you have 2 of something, like 2 copies of the same CD, then you have 1 too many.  Take the duplicate to the thrift store.
  2. Clean out your garage and spare room, (and other places you store unused stuff).  If it’s been in your garage for years, and you’ve never used it, then either take it to the thrift store, give it away, or put it in the dumpster.
  3. Start a clutter-free area.  Have a minimalistic and clutter-free zone or room perhaps your bathroom, or kitchen, and then expand that through the rest of your home.
  4. Travel lightly.  Take half the stuff you think you will need, and twice as much money.  If your garage or spare room is full of luggage, suitcases, bags… then get rid of some of them. Most airlines will only allow one bag anyway.
  5. Dress with less.  If you haven’t worn it in months, and you don’t really like it, and maybe it’s a little worn, and it doesn’t fit you any more ~ then take it to the thrift store.  Have a colour and style theme that really suits you, and try your best to always stick with that.
  6. Simplify and purify your diet.  Go through your fridge, freezer, and larder ~ junk anything past its ‘use by date’ or is of dubious quality, or you shouldn’t be eating or drinking anyway.
  7. Have a £1,000 pound emergency fund, ($1,000).  Money for emergencies reduces stress and makes it amazingly easier to junk stuff you don’t really need.

I live in a 500 square foot loft apartment I call the garret.  The only thing I have too much of is books.  My bookshelves are full, my bookcases, (2 of them), are full, and there are books stacked on the floor…  I’m working on that, all of my books are for sale on Amazon.  In recent weeks I’ve got rid of half my clothes, (see point #5), and replaced some with far better quality stuff.  My kitchen counters and bathroom are totally clutter free, and my refrigerator is only half-full.  I’m not doing too badly on being minimalistic and clutter-free.

Trust me~ discarding unwanted stuff, being clutter-free, creates a raft of good feelings.

Simplicity is the most difficult thing to secure in this world; it is the last limit experience and the last effort of genius.  ~  George Sand

Good design and good quality is timeless.  Always buy the best you can afford, and never buy more than you need.  Remember K.I.S.S. ~ Keep It Simple Stupid…  Simplicity is Good, and Clutter is Bad.  Focus on what really matters to you, and don’t get suckered in to buying cheap bargains you don’t need.

Less is more.  ~  Mies Van Der Rohe

Be clean, simple, uncluttered, and minimalistc, (especially in the bedroom), and I promise you your life will be better.


jack collier

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18 responses

  1. I totally believe that the more you own, the more it starts to own you. I’ve lived out of a backpack for three years, and now I have a three-bedroom house. Things used to be so easy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. These days I’m happy living out of a tiny apartment, and a suitcase ❤


  2. What an amazing post and words after my own heart. I’m reading your words and it is as if I spoken each one of them. I share some of the same goals and dreams as you and you know that I believe in less is more. I wish you the best in making those dreams a reality and in pursuing your passion.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your amazing comments. You truly are a woman after my own heart. I am glad that you share some of my goals, dreams, and passions. ❤ ❤ 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Many good ideas, Jack! But I’m a “more is more” type of person. 🙂 Although I am getting rid of things I don’t use or need.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Good for you. Yon know what? I used to be a ‘more is more’ person ~ but for some reason I now like being minimalist and clutter-free. ❤ ❤ 😉

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I agree with the clutter-free sentiment, but I could never part with my books. Who knows when I’ll want to thumb back through their pages, looking for solace or inspiration? Plus, I have a dream of having a huge library some day. I could easily get rid of my other possessions, but my books I’ll keep as long as I’m able to!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Parting with one’s books is a huge wrench, and reading on my tablet / e-reader is no where near as satisfying as having an actual, physical book in your hands. But, I’m afraid most of my books will have to go ~ eventually. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m pretty good at all this. It’s a sort of freedom. I’m function over form, I can’t deal with clutter and mess, and the more stuff there is, the messier it gets. I’ll second books at too many, but not really, because I love having and being a library.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I am right alongside you with lots and lots of books, but alas, about 80% of mine will have to go. Fortunately, that’s going to take a while. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. whole lots of good and useful information here, my book shelves alas are full too. But have $ in the bank, life is good and the bedroom is clutter free….just don’t look at my clothes closet 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m impressed that the bedroom is clutter free, so many people leave clothes all over in the bedroom. Not a good look I think. 😉

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Only momentarily in certain occasions💜

        Liked by 2 people

  7. We have a container park restaurant here and oh, I have read of people living in tiny vans etc. You are right, I too, need to declutter and buy to replace and not have extras. I tend to have a lot of things so that I need not run to the store just for a bar of soap or a bottle of shampoo! LOL! I have at least 2 dozen bars of soap, 1 doz toothpaste tubes…crazy me!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Maybe you have overdone things on the toiletries front…. 😉 ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lol! Maybe OCD!! Or in our colloqual dialect…kiasu or afraid to lose out! 😉😊😁I love to buy cleaning stuff…detergents or cleansers etc…😉

        Liked by 2 people

      2. You are so cute and exotic, but I think you have a touch of OCD when it comes to buying cleaning stuff. ❤ ❤ 😉

        Liked by 1 person

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