Life's little adventures, accompanied by a running watch

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Minimalism = Mindfulness?

At the beginning of 2015, I shared some goals that I wanted to work towards to become a better me.  Mindfulness was the term I used.  Checking in on myself two months later, how am I doing with that?

Not bad.  Could do better.

Lately, I’ve felt the need to disconnect a lot more than usual to consider the 'could do better'.  Oh I’m not going into hiding or retreating to my own island (though, if there is any time I would like to be on an island, it is now…brrrr).  I think this feeling to disconnect comes along with my realization that I may not be as mindful as I thought I was.  Or that improving my level of mindfulness was as easy as I thought it would be.

Ironically, one of the things that is helping me with this goal was discovered by being connected - on Facebook.  Yup.  I came across a page called BecomingMinimalist.  And it’s really changing the way I think, consume, and prioritize what’s most important.  The author, Joshua Becker, writes very thoughtful and purposeful articles that really get to the core of clutter, space, consumerism, the things that hold us back, etc. 

Like the island analogy, I’m not throwing away all of my possessions.  This is not a revolutionary change I’ve embarked upon, but more of an evolutionary change.  I've been scrutinizing more closely the things I have, why I have them, and why I keep them if not using/wearing them.  I wrote about Medals4Mettle recently, which is just one awesome outcome of my recent attitude shift on 'stuff'.  It all started with a statement I read in one of Joshua’s articles that went something like if you’re looking for more containers to hold  your stuff, you might have too much stuff.  Hmmmm….

Tonight, I piled all of my running clothes on the bed and it sure was a big pile.  Some race shirts never worn.  Some others worn beyond their life.  One pile to Salvation Army and one pile to the garbage. 
Off to Salvation Army bin!
So what did I get out of this and the medal effort?  Lots!! 
  • I feel more organized.  Clutter, whether dusty collectibles or extra clothes, feels like noise to me. 
  • I now have a smaller pile of running clothes that actually fits in my drawer.  And, it’s all clothing I wear to run, without being buried by clothing I don’t wear.  With that said, I can find everything I need when I need it.  Simple as that.
  • I no longer have duplicate finisher medals just collecting dust and buried by newer medals.
  • Spending the hours organizing this pile and organizing medals has meant I’m not mindlessly perusing the internet.  Oh don’t get me wrong, I still do that too.  But mindfulness is not achieved by doing that.  I’m a work in progress for sure.
  • Someone else can get some use out of the clothing and medals I no longer need or use (or in some cases, ever used!).
  • I feel inspired and energized to tackle another project!

In addition to the great feeling of having cleaned or organized something, I also find myself thinking differently about how and when I add stuff to our household.  Not naturally a big shopper, I don’t feel as impacted by potentially not shopping as often.  But the notion of ‘less is more’ has resonated with me more than ever these days.  I just don’t want to spend time washing/drying/folding/ironing a bunch of clothes I barely/never wear.  I’d rather spend that time writing or reading or just….being.


  1. I just got SO inspired! You're awesome and I love you!

  2. Funny, this is something I'm working on this month as well. Reducing the crap in my life that is taking up space. It's hard because a lot of the crap is stuff my family members have brought home and don't use. Yet no one wants me to get rid of it. So, some of what I'm doing must be done when no one else is home. Then remove it from the house before anyone notices it's gone. Clean it up and move it out!

    1. That definitely adds some complexity to it! I've heard that from others that they need to purge when family members are out or else they'll dig it all back out! Good luck to us both!

  3. I'm a purger - periodically I go through and do a huge declutter! Being organized makes me happy and when the organization is bad because there is too much stuff then I start to get cranky.

    1. I think of myself as generally organized, but lately feel like I've taken it to a new level. I agree on the disorganization.....makes me cranky too. Turns into a lot of noise.

  4. Looks like we may be doing some major purging soon so I'll look into the link for minimalism. Thanks!