I know, It's been a little while. I took advantage of this past month to take some time off with my family, rest and get off social media (and by "get off" I mean only checking Facebook 1-2 times a day...progress not perfection).
As you might know if you've been following me for a while, I've been on a journey to simplify my life and create more freedom. It started about a year ago when I began wondering if I needed all these things in my big apartment...and if I needed a big apartment. I got Marie Kondo's book "The life-changing magic of tidying up" and A LOT got donated/recycled. Immediate relief. And astonishment at how much I had accumulated: I moved to the US four years ago, and at that time I had shipped from Belgium only what could fit in my sedan... 3 years later, I needed a moving truck!
I started following the Becoming Minimalist blog (www.becomingminimalist.com) and rethink the way I live. Do I really need 4 different bottles of shampoo? Do I need different products to clean the bathroom, the kitchen, the mirrors, the dishes, etc.? Do I need a big carpeted apartment that takes forever to clean ?
Long story short, 9 months ago I started a journey living in a van for 5 months (what's that for downsizing?). And now I settled again in a 450 square feet apartment. And I use the same product to wash my dishes, my bathroom and my hair (Dr Bronner's if you ask).
The whole journey helped me understand something: simplifying my life doesn't mean having a white empty loft that looks like no one lives in it. It's not about parting with all that is not strictly necessary. It's not about living a sad life of privation. It's about keeping only what we love and what brings us joy. The walls of my apartment are full of paintings I enjoy and photos of people I love. My shelves are full of my favorite books and an indecent number of notebooks. And yet I'd say I'm a minimalist.
And it feels great.