The Unexpected

Let’s talk about it. I feel like with sharing this journey with you, I need to share it all. The good, the bad, and the ugly. Just telling you “HOW” I’m doing everything doesn’t fully prepare you for what to expect. I’m certainly no expert. I am fumbling through this journey just trying to find my way.

I spent a lot of time reading about “minimalism”. I joined the Facebook groups, I read the blog posts. One thing that stuck out to me most and really bothered me deep in my soul is that “minimal” can mean so many different things to different people. For someone who has always had a lot of stuff, enjoys a beautifully decorated home, seasonal decorations, and some sentimental items, the thought of no longer having that makes me want to quit.

I was in one particular group where people would share images of their home, and ask, “Is this minimal?” Other group members would respond with really harsh comments like, “If you are attached to sentimental things, maybe minimalism isn’t for you. A true minimalist wouldn’t have anything on those shelves.”

It honestly made me question what I was doing, and if it was still enough. I again began struggling with the decisions that go along with letting so much stuff go.. “Should I keep this and use it until I can’t anymore, so I’m not wasteful? I use this sometimes, but does keeping it mean I’m not being minimal? Would a minimalist do this?”

And then it hit me. Fuck the noise you see on social media. Part of the clutter that needs to be weeded out of my life are the negative thoughts I have about myself because of someone else’s opinions. You know that saying about opinions and… I’m going to leave it there, you know the saying. It’s true. I am not going through this process seeking the approval of some random stranger. I am not going through this process to meet some made up definition of what minimalism is or isn’t.

What I am doing is making my space more comfortable. I am getting rid of the anxiety surrounding the cluttered spaces in my home. I am creating a home that my husband and I both find peace in. I am NOT doing this to meet someone else’s definition. This is a minimal-ish journey for me, I define it that way, and I will continue to do so.

I think one of the first steps in this entire journey, if you are on one similar is finding your Why. Why are you doing this, and what are you hoping to find in it? What are your goals and expectations? Once you have that figured out, the rest doesn’t matter. Seek décor inspiration from Pinterest. Follow the beautifully curated Instagram accounts. But remember to mute the opinions and beliefs that distract you from your own journey.

— Love, Ashley.

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