My Facebook friends know that I read the book 29 Gifts last month and I completed a month of giving.
It came very easy to me and I loved each and every day. The gifts ended up giving back to me. I learned that even though I am a glass half full kind of girl and very giving by nature, by giving with intention it opens my heart to peace and joy beyond compare!
My husband Ron and I started on July 8th. Each of us are giving away 8 things on the 8th of July and then 9 things on the 9th of July and so forth. I added it up and when it is all said and done each of us will have either trashed, recycled, given away or sold 496 things each. That’s almost 1000 items! Last year we read, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing so Ron and I do have a head start and have paired down so much already. We are very excited! If you are interested, there is a movie on NetFlix right now that can inspire you.
Well what no one knows yet is what has been happening to me since.
When I sit down at night, Ron is usually already sitting in his Lazyboy and has some History Channel or NatGeo show on. I often love those shows but sometimes I want to watch the latest episode of Alone or The Pioneer Woman. Ron is not a fan of either of those but he will watch them with me on occasion. On Monday night I was all caught up on Alone and PW so when I set down, I asked him if we could switch to Apple TV and watch YouTube videos on minimalism. Every video we pulled up was good to me but Ron wasn’t in to it at all. Somehow we ended up on this channel: Living with Lucie and we proceeded to watch for goodness knows how long! Lucie is young. We could be her parents. I have no idea what in the world compelled us to keep watching but we both loved her! I asked our 22 year old daughter Lydia about Lucie and she knew her well. I think Lucie must be a big deal with Millennials.
We watched the video when Lucie didn’t wash her hair for 2 weeks. We watched when she lived on $50 one week. (She lives in NYC) We watched when she went without her phone for 5 days. We watched when she tried to produce no trash for 5 days. We watched when she wore the same outfit for 5 days. And of course, we watched when she tried minimalism for 5 days.
So what do I proceed to do on Tuesday morning? I immediately tried to see if I could go without my phone for 5 days. I did have a caveat that I could use it only for phone calls and for texts from people that didn’t know I was trying to not use my phone. I also allowed myself to use it for Audible when I was driving only.
I made it okay through Tuesday.
However, today I have failed. I was eating lunch in the break-room and I was at a table by myself. There were 2 young females (I guess you would call them Millennials) that I did not know that were sitting at a table beside me. The first thing I noticed was that one of them had a cloth napkin in her lap. I was so impressed and knew this was something that I was going to try to incorporate so I wouldn’t have to waste the company paper towels. I already do not use the plastic cutlery and bring my own silverware from home. I even brought an old cutting board from home today to leave at work so I could cut my apple. (Yay for getting rid of a home item and yay for having something to use to cut my apple on each day and not waste a paper plate!) I was feeling so good.
However, since I didn’t have my phone, I had to listen in to their conversation. They proceeded to talk constantly about how much stuff their parents had and how they didn’t want any of it. I started to feel uncomfortable and I couldn’t take it any longer. I had to do something! I reached for my phone and started scrolling. I challenge you. Try it! See if you can sit alone and eat beside other people that are talking and do nothing.
Anyway, due to this conversation I overheard, I’m really going to try and not push my stuff off on Andie and Lydia. I told my FB freinds that I had to save some cookbooks that I was going through for Andie but I’m really going to try and not give anything else.
What is so sentimental to me, is not to them!
Last year after The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, I made a lot of progress. I took pictures of the girls’ homemade Christmas ornaments that they had made in Girl Scouts and school. After I photographed them, I gave the ornaments a kiss and put them in the trash. I thanked the ornaments for the joy they had given me and said goodbye. (Please don’t think I’m crazy….that is what the book says to do.) We hadn’t used them in years on the tree and I don’t know why I was hanging on to them for so long.
Anyway, I guess to sum it up. I’m trying to be more conscious about everything. I’m trying to use my phone less. I’m trying to produce less trash. But someone, please tell me that there is research out there somewhere that says that by not using the paper towels at work and washing my own cloth napkins it s better for the environment. I’m already wondering if the little bit of dish soap and water I use at work to wash my lunch dishes is better then just bringing my lunch in disposable containers. It must be. I hope! I know my lunches are way healthier than a frozen dinner anyway.
Tonight I’m tackling the VCR tapes and the DVDs. My biggest number so far that I’ve gotten rid of has been 32 Playdough containers. I had a big plastic tub filled with small Playdough containers and loads of cookie cutters for my grandchildren. Since the Playdough was pretty dried out anyway and since the grandchildren have moved so far away, this was an easy decision. I kept all the cookie cutters though! Also, you’ll be proud to know that I trashed the Playdough but I recycled all the little containers.
I think the VCR tapes and the DVDs will out number the Playdough tubs! So excited!
I know I’m behind on race reports and I have them in my draft mode. I promise to get them up soon. I’ve got to do a post on my Slim in 6 video challenge too. I’m doing pretty good but I haven’t’ been perfect with it.
So long for now! Happy Running! Happy Eating! Happy DeCluttering! and now Happy using our phones less, and Happy producing less trash!
Make sure you have your stainless steel straw too in your purse! Go strawless!
PS… go check out Lucie and get inspired!