It’s safe to say we all wish that life was a little bit simpler from time to time. When responsibilities and obligations start to pile up, it can be easy to leave things by the wayside. This includes your home and what’s inside of it. It can be good for your mental health to remove any clutter that is messing up your home and mind. We have a few beginner steps to starting a minimalist lifestyle to help you live more simply.

Write Down Concrete Goals

You’re never going to get anything done if the enormous task of “get rid of everything I don’t need” is hovering over your head. You need to be more concrete than just that vague plan. That’s why it’s important to write down your goals for minimizing. Some things you could write about are:

  • Why do you want to begin minimizing?
  • Why would minimalism help you?
  • Which areas do you want to be decluttered the most?
  • How much time a day will you dedicate to this task?
  • When will you know you are finished?

Start With One Small Area

Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed by looking at everything you want to get rid of at once. Designate a small area of one room to minimize and keep that area clear of any clutter. Then, slowly expand the area to the surrounding parts of the room. Eventually, your area will be large enough to encompass a lot of your home. It’s a slower process, but it works if you allow yourself the time to do it right.

Have a Plan for What You’re Discarding

It will probably be tempting to just throw a lot of things in the garbage and forget about them entirely, but you should give a little more thought to what you’re doing with those things you no longer need. Consider donating old clothes or furniture to a charity like the Purple Heart Pickup organization if you’d like to make a positive difference with your minimalism. You can also resell a lot of your items for some extra spare change.

Be Pickier About What You Buy

One of the first steps to living a minimalist lifestyle is beginning to understand the difference between “need” and “want.” This seems simple but is trickier than you might believe at first. Your brain will tell you that you need certain things—new clothes, new decorations, new electronics—but it’s up to you to understand that those are wants, not needs. Minimalism is all about reducing the number of pointless things in your life. Make this easier on yourself by only buying what you truly need.