Minimize to Maximize

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It was the 13th century mystic, Rumi, whom said “What you seek is seeking you.” When I have an open mind and open heart this couldn’t be more true. When I think of this quote, in a simplistic form, it reminds me of how whenever you want to have a baby or get engaged, it seems like that is all you see everywhere around you. Your eyes are more open to a concept, because your thoughts are in that space.

On a recent trip to visit some friends in Georgia, a friend of mind just downsized and minimized her home, and she couldn’t have been happier. She reduced the size of her home, and her family’s clutter. As I looked around her perfectly renovated home, I found myself thinking of recent conversations with my husband. We have been kicking around the idea of downsizing and minimizing, and seeing my friends home was an example of this concept at work, and working. While discussing her new home she told me of a few books she read on minimalism and a documentary she recommended to watch first.

It’s an interesting concept to me, how you can have an experience at different phases of your life, and the experiences can have wildly different impacts. In this case, I’m referencing the recommended documentary, Minimalism. After my friend recommended it, my husband and I sat down to watch it and I quickly I realized I had seen it years before. However, watching it this time had a very different impact. It’s amazing to me how you can absorb the same information entirely different, depending on your season of life. The concept of the movie is about reducing consumption, being grateful and finding joy with what you do have, and thus increasing happiness. This concept seems exactly in line with everything I am working towards in my Happiness Project.

Continuing with my Happiness Project and my quest to seek grace this month, I also started reading a book called Grace, Not Perfection. In this book, the author discusses ways in which you can give yourself and others grace. When discussing giving yourself grace, the author stresses the importance of decluttering and organization. Through the utilization of getting rid of things that just take up space and don’t add value, you can show yourself grace by making your life simpler and easier.

With open thoughts, while searching for grace, I find myself presented with the concept of downsizing in multiple different arenas.  So I begin the journey to maximize my life by minimizing the clutter and space. Since my return from Atlanta I have begun cleaning out my closets, junk drawers and getting rid of items we don’t need or use. I have taken  page from Dave Ramsey and am also selling items that are of value and in one day sold $100 worth of random items lying around the house. Just starting the concept of clearing out space helps clear my mind. Back in January, my goal was to declutter, but mostly through organization. This week I have been focusing on organizing what I need and getting rid of what I don’t, and I already feel lighter. I don’t plan to get rid of every item I own, and be able to carry all of my belongings in a suitcase; but I do plan to have items that feel purposeful; items in my home that give me joy and meaning, without excess.

What I have also noticed this week, is the amount of time I have spent cleaning out and organizing; Hours of my day have been spent getting rid of items we haven’t touched in years. Hours of my days have been spent cleaning my big, beautiful home. But imagine what I could be doing with that time if there was just a little bit less, that’s where grace comes in. Each day with every item I bag up for donation, I give myself a little more time with my girls, and a little less frustration; I give myself a little more grace.



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