Yes, my minimalist springtime again! For me, spring is my Minimalist New Year. It’s the time when I reflect on the past year and try to tweak my life towards a more simple, uncluttered meaningful existence. I like to decide what worked and what did not work the past year to add more value to my days.
Using public transportation whenever possible has worked well for me this year. I actually enjoy feeling like a tourist as I visit cities and towns as I traveled like a digital nomad. As discussed in the earlier post, you get to see and experience much more and meet interesting people when using public transportation and walking to get around.
The only downside to this change is I get to walk by many local food establishments. Me being sort of a foodie ensures that I will partake in the local offerings. LOL. The lie that I tell myself that it would be alright to eat as much as I would like because I was walking more and the calories would burn off does not hold true ;-( This action may be a contributing factor to my next problem.
For my minimalist springtime, I decided to edit my wardrobe down to about five pairs of pants and shirts. I decided not to do this by donating or giving anything away. I decided just not to replace those items as they wore out until I got to my magic number.
The problem I was and am still having is my pants and shirts are wearing out unusually fast. The crotch, inner leg, outer hip area, and anywhere else my pants and shirts make contact with the outside world wear out quickly. I explored many possibilities for the cause and have failed to remedy the problem.
Looked into checking the quality of the clothing and the possibility that I have gained weight. I believe the fact that I am walking much more and sitting on buses and in trains is contributing to the early demise of my clothing. Stay tuned for the final report.
For my minimalist spring time carrying water and not buying beverages on the road whenever possible has been working great. I decided on doing this for environmental reasons but have benefited in other ways also.
Of course, I benefited financially because I am not paying the high prices for sodas and other sugary drinks. I have lost weight and have enjoyed other health benefits of drinking more water and did I mention it is kind to the environment?
For my minimalist springtime editing, the kitchen was painful. I am a gadget guy and like buying a lot of them. My goal was to get rid of anything that did not have a dual purpose. If its task could be done by something else it was removed from the kitchen.
If I did not use the gadget in six months it was removed from the kitchen. Some of those items I believed I could not live without or at least would miss. This has proved not to be true. The separation was actually painless. This has led to an uncluttered stress-free kitchen.
I love, love, love my experience with the Freegan movement last year. My eyes have been opened to the excessive waste the nation produced. I have seen food being paid for (top dollar I may add) and then thrown out and had for free a few hours later.
Also, a few blocks in either direction people would go hungry. I am proud to admit I have to pick food out of the trash to eat perfectly good food thrown away minutes ago. Most of the fruits and vegetables had cosmetic defects and nothing else wrong with them.
They are thrown out because the store wants their products to “LOOK” better than their competitors in the hope it will attract higher-end customers.
Other prepackaged foods are thrown out due to the advertised expiration date. You could be paying top dollar one day and getting those same items free the next day in the trash. I know it sounds bad but in the back of my mind, I wonder if the smaller mom-and-pop store is getting some of their products this way. Hummmmm!
Freeganism has me looking at waste, consumerism and the way mega-corporations provide products. There is so much waste in manufacturing and transportation. This makes me a fan of local sourcing of our products and services.
Well, this was a look at the past year of the highlights of my minimalist journey. It has been fun and a GREAT learning experience. Also, freeing in that I have fewer things to manage and more money and time to do ANYTHING I like Living more with less.
Last year was a GREAT year for me and my growth. I look forward to this minimalist springtime and summer this year’s travels.