I recently read a very interesting article about how a busy mom started on a “Capsule Wardrobe” and as a result saw less clutter, dealt with less “What am I going to wear?” stress, and felt cuter in an outfit simply by keeping it… well, simple.
You can read more of that story here.
Through her article, I learned of the concept Capsule Wardrobe and was led to a blog called Unfancy, which is solely dedicated to the Capsule Wardrobe lifestyle.
What is a Capsule Wardrobe? It is a mini wardrobe made up of really versatile pieces that you totally LOVE to wear. For Unfancy purposes, it’s a 37-piece wardrobe that includes tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, and shoes. Learn more here.
I was immediately drawn in. We had recently moved houses and I had just done a really good clean out of my wardrobe; I took the advantage to get my wardrobe down to something smaller and more organized. Timing could not have been more perfect with my new shrunken style options.
I began reading and following Unfancy. And then I saw something that hit me beyond clothes, fashion and style. It read:
“When things aren’t adding up, start subtracting. So often, when I’m faced with a problem, my first reaction is to think I need to add something to my life to solve it. Like, if I’m disorganized, I should buy more storage containers. Or, if I’m feeling stressed, I should go shop for a new dress to make myself feel better. When the answer to both of those problems could be to subtract something from my life.”
That quote stayed in my mind for while and really got me thinking about how taking things out of my life could actually make my life easier and better. In fact, I was already starting to think and feel this way when I wrote the article, The Power of Less. I started thinking and realizing that the happiest moments of my life, was when I was living exactly like that. Let me tell you the story.
It was about 8 years ago, when my husband Juan and I were still dating. We were so crazy in love that we couldn’t stay apart for long and decided to move in together, even though we didn’t have vast options to choose from.
Juan and a roommate, Maxi, was living in a 1-bedroom apartment – and I moved in there with them. Back in the day, that didn’t seem like a problem to either of us. We were 3 people happily living together in a very small space.
How did we manage? Well, by subtracting things. Maxi, slept on the couch in the living room, and Juan and I took the bedroom. We all shared one tiny closet, we didn’t have a TV, radio or even a mirror. Funny, we didn’t even miss those things at the time. All we needed (and was happy with) was Internet, a computer, and a window.
We spent an entire year living in that old, small and ugly apartment before Juan and I moved to Malaysia with our new jobs, but until today, my fondest memories are from that time. I suddenly realized that the things that inspire us and make us feel alive could be more than just material stuff.
“To attain knowledge, add things every day; to attain wisdom, subtract things every day.” Lao Tzu
Flash forward almost a decade later and I now live in a big house to accommodate our family of four. With 2 young boys, there is a lot of clutter, but I’m ready for the challenge. I decided that my new objective is to live a full life with less stuff, spend less time thinking about what I’m going to wear, and disassociate my stress levels with my retail therapy.
My tools? For starters, I have Authentic Woman to inspire me to keep going, my memories to give me confidence, and you, our readers and friends, to listen to my story.
The mission is to start subtracting things from my life from this moment on. So over the next month, I have decided to focus on two things (not just restricted to fashion):
1. Less stuff: I will not shop and buy anything for a whole month. I will also look at my wardrobe and get rid of the things I’m not “in love” with. I will keep my favorites and anything that makes me go, “Oh, yeah!” but everything else, will have to go.
2. Less words: I tend to talk a lot, sometimes, more than I’d like to. So another challenge I’m taking up is to talk less and listen more. For every word I say, I will try to listen double. I know for the big talkatives this is a little tough, but I know it will pay off and I’m excited to see what I will learn about myself (and others) in this process.
I share this to not only hold myself accountable for my actions, but also because, who knows? It could also help and inspire you to think about what you want to subtract from your own life. 🙂
Are you with me? Do you want to subtract anything from your life? Please share your thoughts below!