On Simplifying and Starting Over

Hi

I’m Carrie. You may be well aware of that if you’ve been reading for a little while. If you have, you’ll know that this blog has taken on a number of forms over the years. It’s a personal space and has been a diary at times, and so has grown along with me as my life and interests have changed, developing as it needed. It’s now time for another little change.

Each year, I start out with some form of challenge for myself to organise my life. Be it through a list of intentions, goals or resolutions; order and simplicity in my life is something I long for. I have finally admitted to myself that what I’ve been doing thus far, and the fact that I haven’t even got close to achieving it, means that something isn’t working. I therefore need to do something different.

The past year has been a challenge. I’ve shared it in bits and pieces, but I’ve been taking some time to work on my self and my mental health. I’m learning that thoughts I considered normal are in fact not so typical, and that I actually have the option of making some real changes, and real progress, if I work hard enough. I’ve learned that my near constant state of panic and worry is in fact down to illness, and the horrible thoughts bouncing around my imagination are of the involuntary intrusive kind, and aren’t as real as they feel. I’ve learned that I have a lot of issues with stuff; I struggle with hoarding, and have done for a long time. My house isn’t quite worthy of a TV Show (yet), but it is full. I very much struggle with letting things go, so a quick glance into a room will find pieces of junk I’ve held onto for many years, never used, yet still can’t get rid for fear of something terrible happening. It means I gather things I find and take them home ‘just in case’, only for them never to be used but to pile up to the extent that the cupboards and drawers won’t close.

I’m learning that this is the biggest hurdle I need to jump in order to get better. This is the barrier that is standing in my way, and the thing I need to change the most. I hate having so much ‘stuff’ and clutter around, and I hate needing to hang onto it in the way that I do. In turning another year older I’ve realised that I can’t wait any longer for these issues to miraculously disappear by themselves, and it’s time to take some action. So, be it clutter, stress or worry, I am making a conscious, intentional effort to simplify all aspect of my life, as well as my home.

I’ve always been fascinated by the concept of minimalism. As someone who naturally veers towards the opposite end of the spectrum, the lives of those who voluntarily live with less have always fascinated me. I’m hoping that minimalism may just be the answer I’ve been looking for. The idea of only owning the things I completely need and love fills me with a sense of peace. The thought of decluttering my life from distraction and stress makes me feel calmer than I have felt in months. It’s a practise that has stuck out and struck a chord, and therefore I believe it is a path I should follow.

This is a big change, I’m only a few weeks in and have made some progress, but am beginning to understand the scale of the task. I have decided to share it online as a way of holding myself accountable, and to record a diary of my progress. Over the coming weeks, months, and probably years, I intend to simplify my home, possessions, clothes, food, plans, schedules and mind. I want to focus on doing the things I love, so I’m going to try my best to get there. Wish me luck!

  • Good luck Carrie! I started this journey towards the end of last year and the impact on my anxiety and overall health has been really positive. I still have a long way to go but those little steps in the right direction are really important, it’s a process after all. S x

  • I’m rooting for you, Carrie <3

  • Best of luck Carrie, I’m quite similar in the fact I love to keep things ‘just in case’. I understand where you’re coming from. I really hope the whole minimalist style works for you, and I’d love to know how you get on as its something I’ve been wanted to do for a while now too!

    Lucy | Forever September

  • I wish I could be a minimalist but I’m such a cluttered person! Best of luck with your journey girl <3

    http://www.grabyourcamera.co.uk

  • Good luck! Minimalism has completely changed my life and my attitude towards life. I hope it does the same for you. xx

  • Such a wonderful post. I found it really inspiring. Very best of luck and warmest wishes as you begin this new challenge. I’ll look forward to following along. You’re determined and that’s the start of something good . . . Take good care xxx

    Keep Calm and start writing ~
    http://www.23millymay25.blogspot.co.uk

  • Diana Maria

    What a wonderful post! I too hoard a lot of my belongings and always think I may need certain objects “just in case”. It is difficult to let go, but the concept of minimalism is something I’ve been trying to embrace lately too, and it’s a big burden off my chest to let go of some of my things. I wish you all the best love!

    Sending light & love your way,
    My Lovelier Days

  • I would wish you good luck but I know you’ve got this. It will take its time, and there will be moments where it feels like you haven’t made any progress whatsoever, but you will get there in the end and it will all be worth it. I’m excited to follow your journey xx

  • Thank you for posting this. I have been feeling really similar recently, and not even my medication helps. I’ve been really trying to declutter my mess and make mine and my fiance´ home much more calming without loosing the cosiness. It always helps to recruit help from friends when trying to throw things away, as they have no sentimental attachment to your things.

    I really hope this change will help you, and I really really look forward to hearing about your journey. Let’s support one another!!

    Naomi xx
    http://www.teatimewithnaomi.com