09. The #MinsGame
Well it has been some time since I last posted. 5 months actually. In that time, I became a mother to a beautiful baby girl, and now that I think I have enough brain cells working, I can finally slap together a few pieces of project perspective I have been dreaming on. On a side note Stuart and I just had a family day out at New Norcia here in Western Australia where it is currently home to 10 Benedict Monks. We both thoroughly enjoyed our tour of the town, but both had the biggest grin upon learning they have NO possessions! We were in awe.
I thought I would transition back into Minimalism with a new month of August and try playing the #MinsGame. If you are not familiar with this concept it was thought up by Ryan and Josh over at the minimalists.com. The two who started this whole journey for Stuart and I in the first place. Please remember that minimalism has no set rules per se and you make it suit you and your lifestyle.
Here’s the link http://www.theminimalists.com/game/
So the #MinsGame is a game where on the 1st day of the month you remove one item from your home, on the 2nd day of the month 2 items and so on until you finish the month. You can choose to chuck, sell, donate, or find homes for any items still in good use. Quite a few of the items I purged were useful and value adding to others. By the end of the month (my month had 31 days in it) I had removed 496 items from my home. In reality I removed even more, I just gave up counting. And when the new month of September rolled around, I just keep looking for more things to get rid of. It really did re-spark my minimalist ways. If you make it a game with others have a wager, like the person who lasts the longest gets dinner bought for them- Stuart owes me a dinner out as I totally won!
I documented my daily attempts with photos on my personal Facebook page. A few people followed my journey, and tried to play too! Big props to my dear friend Alysha who managed to play the whole month! And a shout out to Bobby who is tackling the challenge this month after seeing my efforts.
I was surprised to see the same people enjoying my posts as some of the items I posted were a tad embarrassing (cue post caesarean granny undies) but I stuck with it. Some days I had to do a big haul and time it with new baby sleeping (when is that anyway) and me managing to eat at some stage, however, it is totally doable.
I was also surprised to see some people comment on me ‘cheating’ by using repetitive or small items such as old make up. Um yep those items are still ‘things’ and are no longer of use or value to me, so can totally go. I am not going to get rid of bigger items such as my couch, or even bigger items such as my cat raccoon Henry! They still bring me value and purpose. It made me feel defensive and question my choices. Sorry Judge Judys SMACK bang of perspective- it didn’t matter the size of the items as they were still taking up space, often emotional space in my house and life. For example, some of the make-up- a tantalising aqua eyeshadow I kept from my year 10 dinner dance from 2002! Also some newborn nappies that my daughter had already grown out of, sigh, they grow up so quickly! I also had so many gift bags- 28 in total and so much gift wrapping craft items- now we rarely give physical presents so why on earth did I need to hold onto it! I gave away the gift bags and have made a craft box for my nephew who loves Mr Maker!
So to round off this post, I thoroughly enjoyed the MinsGame! It made me spark into action about minimising our household items even more. We have been minimising for over a year now and still find peace, joy and accomplishment when we can let go of items that no longer value add to our lives. If you need any tips to get started- try your undies and sock draws, craft supplies, gift wrapping bags, stationery, bathroom cupboards! The list goes on!
Maybe have a go for October, you may just surprise yourself! If you post anything on social media, be sure to use the hashtag #MinsGame. It is a great way to start your minimalism journey and it really makes you question your belongings and their importance. They are really just items taking up space.
Change through experience