3 rules for guilt-free shopping, and an uncluttered life

In an earlier post, less stuff = more happiness, I shared how and why I started simplifying my life, five years ago, by reducing my possessions. Once I had done that, the challenge was to keep it that way and ensure that the old habits don’t creep back in.

My short shopping spree today made me realize how religiously I follow certain rules that have allowed me to keep my possessions to the minimum and continue to have a clutter-free life. These rules can be summarized as three simple strategies that anyone can follow. Simple, but not easy…

  1. Shop Mindfully:
    • Only buy what you need – really need. If it’s a temporary need, see if can be borrowed or rented.
    • Go with a shopping list and stay focused. Don’t be distracted by displays or special offers.
    • Don’t buy anything ‘just in case’ you might need it. Trust that you’ll find it ‘just in time’.
    • Always buy quality. It lasts longer, so costs less in the long run.
    • Don’t compromise on the style, size or color, otherwise you may be discarding it too soon. Continue reading

Smaller the Better

Why do they keep only small size plates with food in most airline lounges? Do they expect people to eat less while traveling, or do they want them to eat less? I think the latter. There’s only so much you can fill up in a small plate; and there are only so many rounds you can make to the buffet tables. I think it’s an effective strategy. And I believe the concept could apply to many things in life…

A smaller apartment could encourage you to minimize your possessions. A smaller office could help you keep it clutter-free. A smaller bag could mean traveling light. A smaller wallet would have fewer essentials. A smaller fridge could help eat more fresh foods. What else can you add to the list?

Of course, not everything is better when smaller.

[Photo of my new half-size, two-pocket wallet :)]

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