Quickstart guide to decluttering

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“She did not need much. Wanted very little. A kind word, sincerity, fresh air, clean water, a garden, kisses, books to read, sheltering arms, a cozy bed and to love and be loved in return.” -Starra Neely Blade
Many readers reach out and ask me how to start decluttering. Whether you’re a new reader or you’re in need of a decluttering refresher this spring here is my “how to” quickstart guide to decluttering!
Organize your thoughts. I don’t know about you but I often have a running to do list going in my head and if I don’t stop to write it all down it can cause anxiety and overwhelm. Begin your decluttering process by creating a checklist of things you would like to accomplish or simply write down your intentions for the process. What is your ideal living space? How do you want your space to look and feel? When things get tough or tiring you will have your list to look back on and inspire you to keep going! (Add pictures and quotes too!)
Communicate. If you live with other people (roommates, partners, children, pets) communicate what you are doing. Let them know your plans and hopes for the space. Reassure them that you will not be decluttering their items, only your own. And yes, I do tell Kiley and Max and Ming and Tony and Meredith that I will be decluttering; pets are so smart and sensitive, they observe so much. Let them know you are not moving or leaving without them, just clearing some things out!
Set a time limit. If you have a full schedule set aside 20 minutes each day. For some, decluttering for too long can start to feel tedious and taxing. Others find it gives them more energy. Find a time limit that’s right for you! Set an end date as well- this can be part of your goal setting or thought organizing! Give a specific date you would like to be done by. Have your goal be lofty yet attainable.
Pile by category. Pull everything out- EVERYTHING. When gathering and piling while working with my decluttering clients I let them know that anything found after we go through a certain category will be immediately donated or recycled because it must not have been very important they often suddenly remember another box of clothing in the attic or some sweaters in the car! Gather by category, then sort. My category suggestions in order are: clothing, books, paper, and then the rest (kitchen, food, toys, and anything else you have.)
When sorting ask your self, do I need this item? Do I love this item? If not, remove it. Beware of just in case items.
If you’re having trouble deciding if you love or need an item, keep it out of sight. Store it in a bin or a bag where you can not see it. If you do not reach for it within the next 6 months or so you probably do not need or love it, let it go. Let it bring someone else joy.
Bonus step: Digital declutter. Take the time to go through your phone and computer for digital clutter. Clear out old photos, apps and more. Digital clutter can weigh on us just as much as physical clutter! For more detail on how to declutter your phone click here.
I hope you find this helpful. Best of luck, let me know how it goes!
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx

 

Countertops

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There are a few myths that persist about minimalism. Some simple living folks reject the term completely because of the connotations it brings. Similar to the words “vegan” and “feminist” something beautiful has been corrupted by misinformation and a few bad eggs.
As a minimalist, vegan, feminist I’m going to try to dispel a few of these myths. The first myth- “All minimalists have clear countertops and lots of empty space.”
While I certainly own less than the average person that does not mean all of the spaces in my home are sparse and bare. In fact, empty countertops are not a joy sparker for me. If things are put away I forget about them.
If clear countertops are your thing thats wonderful, and if they’re not? That’s wonderful too.
Minimalism is for everyone and as a result it will look different for everyone. Minimalism is simply a way to clarify what adds value to your life. By clearing clutter, we make room for what’s important. We make room for the things that spark joy in our hearts.
How does your minimalism look different from others? What do you value most?
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx
Ready to declutter? Click here.

Spring capsule

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“Nature does not hurry and yet everything is accomplished.” Leo Tsu
March was a busy time. Slow living does not mean that life will always be slow, simple living does not mean things will always be simple. April is slower, spring is here and I am so thankful for this beautiful time of year.
This 37 item capsule is a month late, and that’s okay. Life has seasons, ebbs and flows. When life speeds up take something off your plate. What can get accomplished later? What can wait so that you can slow down, so that you can breathe?
Here is my spring capsule, a bit late- in video format. Click here to see each item in my spring 2017 capsule. 
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx
Previous capsule posts can be found here.  The capsule planner I use can be found here. 

Paths

IMG_1086IMG_1093IMG_1094IMG_1072IMG_1067IMG_1079IMG_1080“Of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt.” John Muir
No screens, no facebook, no insta or netflix. No light polution, less air pollution, less stuff, more thinking. For me, slow living takes its best form in camping. Disconnecting and enjoying what’s actually in front of you is a gift.
In front of me is my wonderful partner, two pups, yummy food, a warm fire and amazing (organic, fair trade) instant coffee.
If you need a way to reset your mind and your heart I can think of no better place than the outdoors. Challenge yourself to take as little with you as possible. Take only what you truly need, let the rest fall away.
Our camping list: Tent, cookstove, sleeping bags, two chairs, two mugs, two spoons, two pups, good food, great coffee.  You can also make a small camping kit with first aid supplies, matches, hand warmers, toilet paper and spade, bug spray and other small essentials.
Have adventures, be curious, tread lightly on this earth we all share. Come away eyes sparkling, smelling of campfire. The earth longs to talk with you, to tell you her story, to hear yours.
Go.
More soon,
Bonnie Rae xx