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Ten Minimalist Choices I’m Making Right Now

~ This is a guest post from Robyn Devine of The Minimalist Knitter 

I find myself overwhelmed incredibly easily lately – I think I’ve got it all under control and then I look around and the laundry has piled up, dishes are dirty in the dishwasher and cascading out of the sink, the cats have no food in their bowl, and I’ve got 30 minutes to get to a football game!
I’m learning to step back and make simple, minimalist choices in these moments, and it’s been helping a ton. I’ve shared a few of these choices in the past on my blog, but I thought I’d work up a few special ones for you today!

1. I’m not knitting holiday presents this year, with a few exceptions. In years past I’ve made it my mission to gift everyone I knew with something handmade, and while some people love that, most of the people on my list really didn’t recognize the time it took and the effort and love put into their gifts. So this year I’m knitting approximately five presents, and everyone else will get store-bought. Stress levels instantly reduced!

2. I’m weaving in yarn ends as I knit. Simple strategy to be sure, but as I hate weaving in yarn ends, it tends to get left until minutes before the knit needs to be worn, gifted, or sold!

3. Each day after work, my first stop after taking off my coat is to light a candle. Instant fall smell in the house, instant stress relief for my brain, and it signifies my work day has ended!

4. I’m living with a smaller wardrobe. I’m participating in Project 333, and while I’m not doing it perfectly, I’m doing it the best way for me. I currently rotate through a much smaller wardrobe, and it’s relieved 95% of my morning routine stress!

5. I’m choosing now what I do and don’t want to make part of my holiday season. I love to send out holiday cards, so those are already taken care of – signed, addressed, and ready for stamps! I’m already thinking about how I want to decorate, and am ready to weed out anything that doesn’t fit. And I’m choosing to be okay with not having it all done now – better to set those realistic expectations while I’m still thinking clearly!

6. I’m praying in the shower. Yes, I do double-duty when it comes to prayer – I don’t think God minds. As it’s about the only alone-time I get during the day, I find that remembering to lift others up and give thanks while in the shower doesn’t seem as silly as not doing it at all!

7. I’m committed to knitting only from my yarn stash. Crafters in the mix know that we tend to bring in more supplies than we use – I’m stopping that leak by committing to not purchasing yarn until I’ve used up everything that I’ve got.

8. I’m hiring someone else. I’d love to have a fancy and amazing blog design, but am finally admitting I’m not up to the task. Instead of bringing all that stress onto myself, I’ve hired a new friend to do the grunt work for me, and so far it’s been a wonderful thing!

9. I threw out all my nail polish. The girly-girls reading may shake their heads, and yes I do love to have pretty nails and toes. Because I use my hands all day for work and knitting however, the polish gets gross pretty fast, and I’m not so good with the maintenance. So I’m removing that stress from my life and have tossed all my polish to the curb – I’m au natural from now on!

10. I’m switching to all-digital book reading. I’ve been lucky and have been able to find almost every book I’d like to read in digital format, so I’m making the commitment to switch fully over. There are a few books I cannot get in a digital format {I’m looking at you Harry Potter!}, and I’m not sure yet what to do about that, but everything else is going digital or I’m not reading it! Now that I can get digital books from my library, I’m ready to make the leap!

What sorts of things are you doing lately that are helping create a more minimalist environment? What are you culling from your life, and what are you choosing to be more mindful about?

** Robyn runs the website Minimalist Knitter, where she shares her love of knitting, crafting, and minimalism. She’s recently published the e-book Holiday Made Simple – packed full of tips and tricks for removing most of the stress from your holiday season, and she’s getting ready to expand her Etsy shop from just patterns to selling hand-knit accessories!

Minimalist knitter: http://www.minimalistknitter.com
Etsy shop: http://minimalistknitter.etsy.com
Holiday Made Simple e-book: http://www.minimalistknitter.com/holiday-made-simple/ – or you can use an affiliate link if you want, and earn 60% commission from any sales.

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  • Lana
    November 3, 2010 at 11:26 pm

    I’m in the throws of decluttering my house, and I have hired someone to help me do it. LOVE the FlyLady, but I need to ramp it up to have everything ready for this month’s festivities: Two girly birthday parties with friends and a family Thanksgiving. My husband is finally on board with this plan after seeing how much the two of us have plowed through in just last week’s morning sessions. Yippee! Bye-bye “stuff!”

  • billi
    November 3, 2010 at 10:07 pm

    So many doable ideas. Just need to remember to use them at the right time. Right now decluttering is my mission.

  • Pat Harris
    November 3, 2010 at 2:54 pm

    I loved this entry!! I’m trying to think of how I can incorporate some of these ideas in my life. I don’t need to destress, but I do need to declutter so some of your ideas would work for me. I’ve been decluttering big time but if I’m not diligent, the clutter creeps back into my life. lol. Thanks for the ideas!!

  • Faith @ Minimalist Moms
    November 3, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    I love the praying in the shower one! I’m going to have to use that because it is a great chance to find quiet from the rest of my life. I’m still enjoying throwing things out. This weekend we are taking 20 book boxes of books to a used bookstore in Tennessee. I love dejunking in large clumps! Thanks for your post.
    – Faith

  • Melissa Gorzelanczyk
    November 3, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    Hi Robyn – One of the best things I’ve done lately is take a digital sabbatical each weekend. This is a great way to focus on the things that matter in life, instead of always feeling the need to check email and Facebook.
    Keep up the great writing!

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