Becoming More Minimalistic – An Introduction

As far back as I can remember, I’ve always wanted to hold onto things. Sentimental reasons, concern for future need, and just the fear of “what if I need this exact item in the future and I don’t have it?” This kind of thinking has lead me to be a mini hoarder, which I discovered more so when I moved to the Midwest. I’ve actually never lived anywhere more than 2 years in my entire 26 years of life. My family moved around a lot as a kid trying to chase my father’s dreams, and once my parents divorced, I house hopped back and forth every other year when I would get sick of living with one.
My first apartment, which I got the week of my 18th birthday in an attempt to bring myself some stability, did last me 2 years. But even as an adult, that was the longest I’ve stayed in one place. I moved to Missouri in August of 2014 for my job. Moving out here with 9 other people, I had to pack up my entire life and leave the comfort of the East Coast where my entire family is. I had so much stuff in the apartment that I left that I remember my dad actually having to take some of it home with him because it just wouldn’t fit in my car.
This was the drive from home to MO, just to give you an idea. ROUGH.

 

When we got to Missouri, my room had a VERY tiny closet, and a sort of attic area for me to keep all of the things that wouldn’t fit anywhere else. In the year that I lived I that house, I barely touched any of the things that were in that attic room. I realized that I had WAY too many clothes, as I never wore the majority of them and kept them for the “what if” situations that never happened. When I moved out of that house, that was my first real attempt at minimizing what I had. I packed up at least 6 hefty trash bags of clothes, and took a fun trip to Plato’s Closet. Much of it was denied as it was just too old or not in style, so most of it got donated to the neighborhood Goodwill. Hopefully someone else is getting better use of it all than I did!

 

Pit stop in St. Louis. This is the group I moved here with.
I not only got rid of clothes, but I also got rid of other general things I was holding onto for no reason. As I went through it all, I asked myself when the last time I used this was and if I would ever *REALISTICALLY* use it again. It doesn’t count if you think “well when I lose that extra 15 lbs, I will need these jeans I wore in high school because they’ll fit!” I’m all for you losing the 15 lbs, but you don’t need those old high school jeans to celebrate that. Even better, go get yourself another pair of jeans that make you feel great after you’ve cleaned out the other 5 or 6 pairs you’ve been holding onto but haven’t worn in years. I was literally that person. I had gained over 20 lbs between the few years before moving and after I got here, and the fact that I was going to be so far from my family meant that I had to keep everything because I couldn’t just run to Dad’s house and pick it up anymore if I needed it. I was going full-blown adult and felt the urge to take every. single. thing. with me due to the fear.
Courtesy of Pinterest
I’m here to happily tell you that that fear is nothing but that: fear! And unnecessary, because I don’t even remember all of the things I’ve gotten rid of. And do you know why? Because I didn’t really need them. And I haven’t needed any of them in the last 2 years since I did that giant purge. It’s crazy to think that we have so many things in our homes that truly serve no purpose other than taking up space. Having that realization was what gave me the ‘urge to purge’ as I call it. The desire to go through every single thing I owned and decide if it served any purpose in my life. If it did, I could keep it guilt free. If not, it had to go.
This has truly been a step-by-step process over a period of those two years. And since that initial big purge, I’ve moved 5 times total. Five moves in a two-year period?! Oh, yes. It’s been quite a roller coaster. And with each move, I’ve gotten rid of more things. It’s a wonderful feeling to be down to the bare minimum!
Photo Credit
Do you feel like Cher?? I can relate.
This last move was to move in with my boyfriend, so it was a combining of two homes into one. I knew this one would have to be the biggest one yet because Jake has a LOT of stuff and I didn’t want us to begin our next step in life together with a bunch of extra crap. We have a pretty big 2 bedroom 2 bath apartment, and the extra bedroom has a walk-in closet that we store most of the excess stuff in. It’s nice because we don’t have to store anything outside. And the only things in that closet are the clothes I’m currently selling on eBay, my seasonal decorations, some work out equipment, and Jake’s excess computer stuff (he’s a gaming nerd, so there’s quite a bit of that).
The Thompson House Purge, October 2017
The last thing, and what I thought would be the most difficult to do, was my closet. We did Jake’s closet before the move and it was so easy. The majority of his things were from high school and he hadn’t worn them in years. The purging of my closet to get it to where it is now was literally a 3-year process. Each move, I got rid of more things. But this time I finally felt like I could go through and be brutal on what I did and didn’t want. To get it down to the bare minimum. And I did! I got rid of everything in the picture. It was wonderfully liberating!
This is *most* of my stuff, with there being more to both the right and left.
It’s hard to get a picture of it all in a walk-in closet!
When you decide to take the plunge for the purge, I found a few things helpful:
1.       Have I worn this more than once in the last 12 months?
2.       Do I pass over this item repeatedly for something else?
3.       Am I just holding onto it for sentimental reasons?
4.       If I was shopping right now, would I buy this again?
Side note: If you have special occasion items, obviously you don’t wear those as often. But you can ask yourself if the appropriate occasion comes up again, would you wear this or will you want to get something new?
Have you been wanting to purge your closet and just can’t take the leap? Did you do it and it felt amazing? Tell me about it below!
XO,
Dani

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  • 🥰Our first Valentine’s Day being married was so special! Nothing like getting a beautiful arrangement of roses, right ladies?! Jake had them use pink and lavender roses and lavender sprigs between them to fill it out instead of baby’s breath. It smells so good!! I hope everyone had a wonderful Valentine’s Day ❤️
  • Happy Valentine’s Day!! I’m working on a little DIY a project today 😍 can’t wait to be done and see the finished result. And to celebrate ❤️ day with hubby later! I hope everyone has a wonderful day filled with love. P.S. — 2 years ago I was single on Valentine’s Day and I made myself a whole cake 🎂 so don’t be afraid to treat yo’self 😎 just sayin! http://liketk.it/2zVm3 #liketkit @liketoknow.it
  • The weather in the Midwest is crazy, y’all. It’s been nice the last 2 days (in the 50s) and it’s gonna snow this weekend. I’m so ready for Spring!!! 🌷
I’ve been putting together a really fun capsule wardrobe for this season to help with those transitional months before it really gets warm. I’m excited to share it all with you soon!! 😍 Happy 🐪 day!! http://liketk.it/2zTTb #liketkit @liketoknow.it
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  • Comfy casual for errands is my style 👌🏻 also I love this hat because on the days I don’t feel like doing anything with my hair, hats are a lifesaver. And dry shampoo 😂. I put a poll up on my stories yesterday asking if you guys want to see a series of posts on #cozyminimalism and the answer was an overwhelming yes! I’ve already started working on them and will start posting next week so stay tuned!! In the mean time, check out my post on 12 ways you’re wasting money on clothes and how to stop. We’re all guilty of it 🤷🏻‍♀️. Click the link in my profile to read!  http://liketk.it/2zSzn #liketkit @liketoknow.it
  • Fun fact day about my wonderful husband: Jake has this uncanny ability to make me smile and laugh even when I’m sick. I was in bed all weekend but somehow he managed to still make me feel better. 
He is the king of puns and loves to make corny jokes. I’m talking real bad dad jokes. But I think they’re hilarious, and his enthusiasm and the fact that HE finds them so funny is the best part.

It’s the little things like this that showed me he was my perfect person. That and he told me he was going to marry me after 3 weeks of dating 😂🤷🏻‍♀️ which also made my laugh at the time but 9 months later he was down on one knee! 
That was also the same day I tried to break up with him because I had just gotten out of a bad relationship and I was starting to like him way too much too soon. I told him I wasn’t ready for another relationship and he literally said “are you trying to break up with me? ...no. We’re gonna get married.” I busted out laughing but he was so serious.
Even then, I could tell he really believed that. Now 4 months into our marriage he still shows me every day he wants to be married to me ❤️👰🏻🤵🏻 We have to appreciate the little things like the bad jokes because the effort behind them is how people say “I love you” in other ways. Happy Monday 💕#marriedlife💍 #marriagegoals
  • It’s Friday!! Every day we deal with this intense cold, it’s a day closer to Spring 🌷😍. Shop this look at DaniThom.com or via the link in my profile 💕 http://liketk.it/2zNRA #liketkit @liketoknow.it

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