Monday, February 11, 2013
Minimalism 101: Marriage Shouldn't Equal More Things
When we got married, my relatives told me that I should register for new things. At first I thought this was silly because my then fiance and I had been living together for several years at that point. We already had everything we needed, but many people insisted that I need to register for newer items in our house. I finally was able to convince Kendan to go with me to Target and even let him walk down the aisles with the laser gun to tag new items for our registry. I found myself regularly checking our registry and would squeal with excitement when I saw "purchased" next to an item.
Fast forward to a couple months ago. I found Adam Baker and then watched "I'm Fine, Thanks". These completely changed my perspective on the things I owned and the goals that I have. I finally asked the question, "Why am I nesting and what am I doing?!" Ever since we moved in together I had gone out shopping for things to fill our little apartments (we're now preparing to move into our fifth one!) and we've somehow gathered many items that I don't even remember accumulating. The last couple of months have been a peaceful and therapeutic session for me.
After I realized I didn't need all of the things we had acquired, I went to work clearing out the extra things. One of the first places that I decided to clean was the bathroom. I opened up the linen closet and stared at a stack of towels. It's just Kendan and I in this apartment and I can promise you that we have probably only used the top six towels in the stack of twelve or so bath towels and probably the top four of the eight hand towels. I'm always on top of the laundry so there is never a need to dirty up more than a few at any one time.
These towels were given to me from many loved ones and they were on my registry. Funny thing is, I packed up three boxes of perfectly fine towels to make room for the new ones. I'm not going to get rid of the "new" ones, but why on earth did I think I needed new towels when my husband and I had nearly 20 just by combining our collections when we moved in together? What is it about this society and our traditions to accumulate more things when someone betroths another? I couldn't figure it out.
I don't really know what it means or what I am trying to say, but please think about the purchases you make and realize there is no need for a shiny new towel (or anything else!). If you have acceptable items that aren't tattered, torn, or trashed, then don't get rid of it yet! Remember to reduce, reuse, and recycle, but also to carefully consider the items that are coming in to your home. We've donated so many items that we have only used once or have duplicates of. This change of mindset has also helped me realize I don't need to spend money on things like that, which has tremendously helped our financial situation. (More on that later!)
Kelsey is a passionate vegan living in Houston, Texas, spreading the word about the benefits of eating a healthy, plant-based diet. She's also a minimalist enthusiast, a self-proclaimed financial guru of her household, and founder of The Little Red Journal.