3 Steps to a Tiny Life
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What does living a tiny lifestyle mean?
It isn’t just about the size of the house you live in.
It’s about clearing the clutter, getting rid of the chaos, so you can think and breathe and focus on what’s important to you. It’s about looking at your things and only keeping those you love. It means spending your time doing what’s important to you.
Get rid of things that weigh you down in life, like material items that you don’t really need, hurtful people who make you doubt yourself, or negative thoughts that stifle you and make you afraid to live your life your way.
Change can be scary! Especially when you accept that your life might not look like everyone else’s. That’s okay! You get to make your own choices about how to live your life.
Maybe you aren’t quite ready to build your tiny house. (If you are, click here!) But you can start right now to build the life that you want!
3 Things You Can Start Doing Right Now
1. Identify your values.
Decide what is important to you. Then, you’ll know what to get rid of.
Faith, family and friends. Those are often the big three, but after those, what is important to you?
Leanne says: This was a hard question for me! I always answer faith, family, and friends. Now I have to dig deeper! I came up with health, service, community, adventure, and learning. I was surprised at my own answer. I didn’t include any “things!” Not even my cell phone, which is pretty important to me, too, but in answering this question, I realized once again that material things are not the things that bring happiness and fulfillment.
Now it’s your turn. What’s important to you?
Once you have figured that out, ask yourself what you are doing in each of those areas. And also the first 3! Devoting your time to your priorities is a big step in leading the life of your dreams.
2. Edit your life. How much is enough?
Georgia O’Keefe’s home wasn’t tiny, but she said she wanted nothing in it that wasn’t essential to her life. What is essential to your life? Keep only things that are necessary and things that make you happy.
Just as a curator selects only the finest pieces of art to go in the museum, you can select only the finest items to take space in your life.
An easy way to learn how to do this is to start in your closet. Wouldn’t it be great to only have your favorite things in your closet? So that every single item is something that is flattering or comfortable, that makes you feel good, that you love to wear. Guess what? Those are probably the clothes that you choose to wear all the time anyway. So why store the others? Move them on so they can be useful to someone else.
3. Edit your time.
For a week, write down everything you do. Actually, a counselor once had me do this for just 3 days. I was astonished at how much I had to do! My list was impossible. No wonder I was exhausted and stressed.
Next, go back to that list you made of what is important to you. How much of your time is spent doing those things? How much time do you spend on unimportant things. If you have to spend 40 hours a week at your job, it’s even more important to fill the remaining hours with only your priorities.
Spend time thinking. This sounds silly, but we often don’t allocate time for it. I feel guilty if I’m just sitting and not accomplishing anything. My husband and I will sometimes sit on the couch and have a discussion about an area of our lives that we need to make decisions about. Afterwards, we feel so good to have spent the time thinking it through, coming to an agreement about what we want, and making the plans for how to achieve it. Sitting on the couch was not wasted time at all.
Summing it all up
Imagine saving 20 minutes a day having to go through the clutter in your closet finding something that you want to wear. Imagine spending less time putting things away. Imagine less time cleaning your house, dusting your things, making your house presentable for company. Wouldn’t you have friends over more often if you knew the house was always ready? Wouldn’t you accept that offer to go out for dinner if you knew you didn’t have work to do at home? Wouldn’t you be more willing to volunteer a couple hours a week, if you have saved that time by decluttering your life?
As you create your tiny life by eliminating clutter and chaos, you will find something amazing. You will suddenly have MORE. More peace, more time, more freedom. More room in your life to enjoy the important things.