I dream of being a minimalist. I want to live in a beautiful, uncluttered, clean, white space. I want less things so that I can live more. I want my life to have meaning and purpose. But just like I failed at being vegan, I failed at being a minimalist and chances are, you probably will too.
Reasons people fail at minimalism
I have four kids. If you haven’t noticed, that’s my excuse for everything and probably will be for the rest of my life. I constantly declutter and I hardly ever buy them anything but their stuff still exists and accumulates. They go to school, they bring home paperwork that I don’t know what to do with. They get dressed, they get undressed, the dirty laundry piles up. My kids’ clothes alone crushed my minimalist dreams. I’ve already given away enough to cloth a small country. No matter what I do, their shit keeps getting into the house. When you have kids, you have toys. I downsized but clearly not enough. I can’t part with the doll house. If you have a doll house, you must have at least one doll per kid and the dolls must have clothes and a car for them to go to a super awesome, pretend Barbie party. Legos, puzzles, blocks, arts and crafts, also made the cut. So, yep, I failed. Over 100 items right there.
I live in the Midwest. We have changing seasons. Minimalism and seasons do not go well together. This means we will have 6 pairs of winter boots, 6 snow pants, 6 jackets, 6 hats, 6 gloves, 6 scarves either in storage or at the front door. This is at minimum and that alone is 32 extra things. Don’t get me started on fall, this is the worst. We have a combo of flip flops and boots, winter jackets and bathing suits. Not to mention hoodies and jean jackets. You really never know what the weather is going to be for these few months, so therefore you can’t be a minimalist in Autumn in the Midwest. If you don’t believe me, ask my front entryway in October.
Birthdays and Holidays
Again, we have 4 kids. That means a Birthday is always around the corner. I try to encourage that presence is greater than presents but friends and family insist on buying them stuff. It’s rude to say sorry I don’t want this plastic piece of shit toy or sorry my kids already have enough clothes. We say thank you and we keep the stuff.
Same goes for holidays. I tried to eliminate the Easter bunny, like I did the tooth fairy but somehow he weasels his way in along with more plastic nonsense. Even if we do the ‘something you want, something you need, something to wear and something to read’ rule to Christmas presents, that’s still 16 gifts plus stocking stuffers. Of course the gift of experiences are great but not as much fun to open. The experiences are even better if the giver takes them on the experience rather than buy a family pass to a museum or zoo, which means I will feel obligated to take my family and eventually spend more money then I originally intended. Anyways, if you’ve seen Christmas at my house, you already know any thought of minimalism has gone out the window. Oh, plus, I like Christmas decorations and I assume a true minimalist would never have a tree with over 100 ornaments.
Let’s be real, sometimes I just want to buy new stuff. It’s all Target’s fault. I also might want to wear more than black and white on occasion. My purse alone contains more than 100 items. Lastly, my minimal dream home is completely unaffordable. Time to just face that minimalism isn’t for everyone.