What with all the moving, I didn't really get around to post any items that I gave away in the past two weeks. But I think that's quite OK. It didn't really seem so interesting anymore anyways. I'm not so organised than when I had the project running officially, so I often forget to take pictures. Also, with one or two objects, my posts are very short and they seemed a bit pointless to me.
So I think I'll end project 365 officially now with a short look back.
I initially started project 365 in December 2010. When we moved out of Trev's shared flat that fall and joined all our stuff at my place, we were surprised and shocked by just how much we owned. Even though we both thought we were pretty non-materialistic and didn't have too many things that we didn't need, the amount of clutter that passed through our hands whilst moving was just incredible. That was when we decided to downsize a bit.
We started with giving away a lot of household items that we now owned doubly, but that didn't really seem to make a big difference and left me unsatisfied. That's why I decided to take decluttering to the next level with project 365. From 1st December 2010 to 1st December 2011 I would give away seven things each week, 365 things over the course of a year.
I started slow and easy with things that had been lying around for years just because I couldn't be bothered to get rid of them. Step by step, I moved to the more difficult decisions. When my daily routine in the flat didn't provide me with immediate candidates for removing anymore, I started methodically decluttering one area after the other. From my bathroom supplies through my bookshelf to my crafting material: I slowly made my way through them.
Even if I felt like my life was pretty streamlined now, I never had any problems to come up with seven more things by the end of the next week.
When we left my flat at the beginning of May though, our determination not to move anything unnessecary resulted in a major cleanout, after which I could declare project 365 as finished. I had shot sell past 365 things just halfway through the set time.
What I have learnt
As a result I now feel like the things that I own are much more under my control. It can be intimidating how many objects we accumulate in a very short time without even wanting them. I now have a sort of program running in my head that scans through every object that I go past in my daily life. If the object hasn't been used in a while, it is mentally noted down on the red list and if after a while I decide that I really don't need this thing (enough), I will get rid of it promptly.
I think I have learned a number of important things through this project:
- Things are often much less important than you think.
- Some things are also more important than you think.
- Ergo: Know your needs.
- Getting rid of things really isn't as complicated as you might think.
- Don't let things sit around for too long.
- You can always simplify more than you think
- It is important to decide what you want to own and to own things consciously
Most importantly, the prject has really helped me to understand the benefits of simplyfying and has shaped my mind in many aspects that will help me achieve a less complicated lifestyle. This is definitely not the last adventure in terms of downsizing for me!