Minimalist Inspiration

Sometimes I just have the energy to read stuff I already know, but are too tired to remember. You know, a little pep talk. This little book, "The Minimalist Woman's Guide to Having it All" by Meg Wolfe, definitely falls into that category. As head of the domestic sanitation division, I am engaged in an eternal battle against clutter and grime, and sometimes the piles of the first that needs to be dealt with in order to get to the second just feels too overwhelming. And it´s the emotional side to it that trips me. Wolfe understands, and this is one of the things she has to say:
"There is an odd disconnect between keeping things for Just in Case or not wasting money and the way things are made, disposed of, and dumped into landfills. We don’t make the association between personal waste and landfill waste. So we create these little landfills inside our homes—and junk drawers—out of some inner notion that we won’t be wasting resources. The absurdity is lost upon us."
Not all ruins are pretty.
It´s a no-brainer really: empty the entire kitchen, put the stuff in the living room, clean the kitchen out, put back what we use and give the rest away (or throw it in the bin). Oddly, it didn´t even occur to me that I could before I read Wolfe. I suppose that after 22 years in the same flat, I have just gotten so rooted that I am stuck. I am surrounded by debris from old lifestyles, abandoned projects, well-meant but misguided gifts, and plain silly ideas.
"No doubt many of those unfinished dreams and projects cost a bit of money. So I ask you: Why are you paying for them twice or thrice over? All of those unresolved things are taking up space in your head, so there’s one extra cost. And they are taking up space in your residence, which is another cost. Goodness only knows what further cost they will take if they are hanging around for the rest of your life!"
So true. I just took another look at my wardrobe and threw out another ten or fifteen pieces of clothing that I never wear. Take the pretty brown bluse that fits me perfectly, goes so well with my hair colour, and I have worn exactly once in what, three? four? years: I can´t fit a silk undershirt under it (low neckline) which makes it uncomfortable for sweaty hot summers, it has 3/4 length sleeves (and that low neckline) which makes it too cold to wear in the winter. Every time I see it I feel bad. I sometimes find myself wearing things that are uncomfortable to stop feeling so guilty about never using them!

Wolfe is a good rhetorician and she both enlightens and inspires me.
"It is time to live in the here and now, and not in the old mindset from five, ten or thirty years ago. You’re not that person anymore. You’re not in that time of your life anymore. If somewhere along the line you do decide to do those things, you’ll start fresh, from your current place in life, which is so much more satisfying. Freeing yourself up from both expectations and regrets is literally freeing yourself to live life in the fullest, in the here and now, without all the baggage from the past having a controlling vote. You’re free to move Onwards and Upwards."
Meg Wolfe has a blog where she writes about minimalism, writing, and life. I understand from some reviews that if you follow her blog, this book may hold familiar ideas for you, but for me, this was the perfect read right now. And I will go see if that blog has more good stuff.


  1. i've subscribed to the blog. thx! i've moved quite a bit, but clutter still wins.