Saturday, 23 June 2018

The Dave Bruno 100 Thing Challenge (Part 3) - Not Exactly 100 Things

I have not yet finished my list of a hundred items for The 100 Thing Challenge. Yet even though I am not counting, the idea has sparked in me a sense of awareness of any single item I use or think of buying. I am sure that if I were to take the challenge seriously, many items would easily get left out of the list if I needed to reduce on my total amount of things. Then again, I am not writing a book about the subject nor would I get any monetary compensation out of it (let's face it, Dave Bruno knew he would get a sum for his book so it was not such a big deal for him to part with things and then have to re-buy them later). As a single mum on a reduced hours pay I need to watch out for those items I might actually need in the future, despite being a Minimalist at heart. The twenty/twenty rule advocated by The Minimalists isn't very much in keeping with a budget containing one pay and two people. And so whilst I do plan on eventually finishing my list, if only out of curiosity and to be able to share it with my readers, I feel that even without such a list my outlook on things has already changed since starting Bruno's book. Furthermore, I do believe that regardless of that I won't be confining myself to a certain number of things in my life, I am anyway reducing always further the amount of things I actually care about. Now in my case I must admit I would never limit my wardrobe to x number of items (truth be told, I hated Project 333 so so badly even though I was totally fine later on KonMari-ing my wardrobe and probably dwindling my clothing items to less than the 132 it could encompass over 4 seasons of the Project.) I would also never keep my walls bare (I actually always wish I have more walls to put fave pieces on). That said, I feel that I am finding my footing very well with the whole idea of dwindling my number of possessions to as close to hundred as I comfortably can. Some of you might think that 'comfortably' is very much contrary to the very term Minimalism but Minimalism is about finding your own way and peace after all, hence why I call it comfortably, rather than taking it to mean abundance as some might think.

I end my short update here today, hoping you find my ideas and links useful, till next time.

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Hope - A Blessing or A Curse?

I tend to hope a lot. I dream a lot too. One word is enough to set me off on a daydream to a whole fantasy story about what could or couldn’t, might or mightn’t, happen. The problem is that more often than not, my hopeful character tends to think that ‘could’ is more possible than ‘couldn’t’ once I put something in my head. Variables tend to get forgotten as I excitedly focus on possibilities I prefer and overlook the fact that nothing ever goes exactly to plan.

It’s happened to me with small things and bigger things, things I brushed off once they failed and experiences that conditioned the rest of my life. And yet I never learn.


https://www.freepik.com/free-photo/white-doors-in-the-meadow_945679.htm
Meanwhile, I have a friend who is just the opposite. When asked a few days ago how come he is always in a good mood and frame of mind, his answer was a simple ‘I expect nothing’.  His reasoning was that, in expecting nothing, anything positive at all that happens is a gain and not just a part of an expectation or maybe even something that causes the feeling that the gain falls short of expectation.

So the real question is, should I hope or should I not? Hope, like money, is a good friend but an evil master. As with anything else, it is good in moderation. Then again, I am never moderate, in love, in life, in passion and compassion. For me everything is an all-or-nothing and I find it hardest to be something other than high on happiness else “in the depths of despair” as Anne of Green Gables would say.

This morning, as I lay in bed taking a last rest before starting my long day, my mind wandered to something that means a lot to me and about which I keep hoping and hoping for a positive outcome despite knowing it is the trickiest unlikeliest thing that could happen. Immediately I remembered my friend’s words. Never expect anything, I tried to convince myself. I reasoned it was the best I could do in order to avoid getting hurt. Only for a minute though, till my mind again fled to that secret place that is Wonderful Dreams Come True land, totally inexistent yet a source of everlasting carrots on a stick… you know, the kind you can never actually reach and eat. So I forced myself a second time to think that I should not expect anything. For a minute or so. Then it stopped working. My mind whirled round and round, the minutes kept ticking by to that nauseous time when I would have to get out of bed and still I kept hoping, and not expecting, hoping again then not expecting again. Round and round, over and over, very much like the pendulum of a clock as it slowly ticks away the seconds, minutes, hours and days of our life as I struggle still with the question - should I hope or should I not?

Sunday, 10 June 2018

Why You Should Become A Minimalist

In simple terms, Minimalism is about what makes you happier in life. So go ahead and fill your closet with shoes if they truly make you happy, but limit them if all they do is overwhelm you or hurt your feet.

Here are ten reasons to embrace Minimalism, in my latest article on eve.com.mt:

Monday, 4 June 2018

Twenty-Two Pairs of Shoes

I was talking to a friend from work and proudly said that I am a Minimalist. "Except for the clothes, handbags and shoes," I said. To which my friend asked just how many pairs of shoes I owned. I'd never counted. Yet seeing as someone asked, I then just had to count! Twenty-two pairs. However out of all those pairs I did own, there was not one pair of comfy sandals that I could safely wear whilst driving or when my knees hurt too much for heels. Unless you counted the one pair with the soles coming off. I admitted as much to my colleague who said there would soon be twenty-three pairs of shoes in my room then.

https://www.freepik.com/free-vector/
winter-shoes_976363.htm
No way! How could I let another pair sneak in when I was trying so hard to put down my number of possessions?! And so I did what I should have done sooner. I grabbed a pair of boots that cause me pain even to look at. Truth be told, these boots caused me no pain at all when I wore them. Last year. Before the summer. Before my make-over too. They were boots that made me feel goofy, unfashionable, with laces that kept coming undone, which made them a hazard. The new me argued that I could pull off those boots with the confidence I have now and they were still perfectly fine unless you counted the broken elastic on the back which was anyway hidden by the laces. Those laces. They came undone all the time. Repeatedly, I would squat to reach the back of my ankle boots in order to tie them up again. The image came to my mind, together with the one where once at work the COO actually pointed out that my laces were undone. Which was around the day I'd gone to work looking almost green as I was very sick. Around the time when some very personal trouble started in my life. That same time when I was so self-conscious of how little those boots did to make me confident, look good, desirable.

Those boots had no room in my new life, to be worn by my new self, a reminder as they were of what I would call darker ages. I didn't want the constant reminder that they belonged to an era when my outfits screamed despair. I'll keep my better-loved, still-worn, broken-zip knee highs instead.