Zaktualizowano: 5 cze 2021
No matter where you live, you can always do better - for both the environment and
In this series of articles, we will talk about how people who live in big cities, like Prague, can
live more sustainably. People who like the big city life, all the restaurants, cafés, and shops.
People who live in apartments, with no garden where they could grow their own tomatoes or
compost. People who like fashion and cosmetics. And most importantly, people who care
about our planet and want to reduce their environmental impact.
Part 2: REDUCE
Now that we have refused to buy/get all the items that we don't need, let's take a look at
how can we reduce the stuff that's already in our lives?
As a practicing minimalist, I know how amazing reduction of our material possessions can
be. The main idea of minimalism is to reduce the material things in your life in order to gain more space for the real stuff (relationships, family, love, self-development, job satisfaction). Since I gave up my addiction to cheap clothes, cosmetics, and stuff from Ikea, I began to notice that I have more time and energy for the activities and people that I love. I have improved in fitness, I maintain a loving relationship, and even have time for my own projects and studies, all while being a mother of a little baby!
Less stuff means less worries. Less stuff means more time for your actual life.
In this article, I will share a couple of “reduction tips” that you can apply in your closet,
cosmetics bag, and household.
A minimalist closet based on few essential pieces that are easy to combine is highly practical
and very relieving. I've got rid of all the trendy, cheap, and incombinable stuff that I got on
sale in Zara and H&M (donated/swapped/sold on Vinted) and maintain only the timeless,
good quality pieces. Well-fitted jeans, leather jacket, white t-shirt, little black dress, woolen
sweater...you probably know what I am talking about, as capsule wardrobe¹ has become a
buzzword recently. I add a new essential piece every now and then, but that's rather rare, and if it happens, my purchase is always very well thought. The minimalist approach has
brought me a functional and practical wardrobe. It has also saved me a lot of stress caused
by the “what am I going to wear”, “I look like an idiot” and “OMG I have nothing to wear!”
Essential pieces in neutral tones might be boring for some people, but for me they are easy
to combine and look great on every occasion.
(1) Capsule wardrobe = small collection of essential, timeless garments that can be easily combined together and worn during multiple seasons
Today's consumerist society has made us think that in order to look pretty, we need tens of cosmetic products. If you would read a random article about skincare in a women's
magazine or watch some beauty video on Youtube, you'd be surely told to buy between 10- 15 products. Also, you'd get the impression that if you don't own these 10-15 products, you are doing something wrong. If you want to reduce the number of cosmetic products that you use, you need to break away from these stereotypes and shift your focus from what the others say to what your body/skin/hair says. Try different products to discover which (and how many) products are most suitable for you. Personally, I've reduced my skincare from ten to only four products. As for my hair, I only use two now - a shampoo and hair oil for the tips.
And you know what? My hair has never looked better and - I don't wanna brag - my skin is also good-looking if you overlook the increasing wrinkles. :-)
1. Household items
When it comes to furniture, appliances, and other things from the “household category”, I
apply one simple rule - use it or lose it. Every six months or so we go through our stuff and if
we find something that we hadn't used in the last year and it doesn't serve us anymore, it goes to Facebook marketplace/charity/trash bin. No mercy. No “but what if we'll use it in the future?” If we haven't used it in the last year, we won't most probably use it in the future,
either. Not everything in our homes can be subject to usefulness though. How about all the
candles, pictures and flowers? In this case, I always ask what does the object brings us? If it's
a good, cozy feeling or some particular emotion, I keep it. If it's just collecting dust, it's time to reconsider its possession. And lastly, the most controversial one - objects with an
emotional value. They are the ones that tend to take space and we would often prefer not
to have them, but at the same time, we are not able to say goodbye. Once again, I ask myself whether the object brings me any emotion or memory. Many times we keep things just because we feel sorry to throw them away (school exercise books, old agenda, graduation dress…), but when we think about it, they actually don't add anything to our life. I do keep a couple of objects from my childhood, but only the ones that are connected with an especially strong memory and/or nice emotion. The rest is resting in peace.
I will end this article with an important reminder. Minimalism is not just about reducing the
things around us. It's about looking for the emotions and impulses that trigger our
consumption of material things and learning to control them. Reducing the stuff in our home
is just a starting point for the lifelong minimalist journey. Bon voyage!