Mindfulness, Minimalism

The biggest minimalist challenge I’ve undertaken

For more regular readers of my blog you’ll know I’ve decluttered and rid myself of immense amounts of stuff from the bits of paper and detritus that fill our drawers to more extreme items like our TV. We’ve got a way to go in our guest bedroom where it’s the antidote to minimalism right now but once we’ve completed that, there will be very little left in our home that doesn’t serve us or bring us joy.

There is one area though that I have struggled with over the last two years and one I’ve never resolved and I’ve decided now is the time to address it. My wardrobe.

I’ve tried everything from following the fabulous Unfancy’s 37 piece capsule to trying a personal uniform to bulk buying and now I’ve got to the point now where I buy one or two things at least every month if not more. Yet I still went into my rack of clothes this weekend and declared ‘I have nothing to wear’. This is ridiculous. Whilst I don’t have that many clothes anymore I probably have enough to wear for at least a month or two without washing anything. I cannot get past this and it’s debilitating me. It’s causing me stress because I can’t resolve it, financially it holds me back as I try more and more different styles and items. So I have decided it’s time for a different tack and one which is very scary for me – a clothes buying ban for 6 months using mindfulness. By using mindfulness I feel I can identify the feelings I connect with clothes buying, and the anxiety that I am just not getting my outfits right and work towards loosening my grip on the belief that buying clothes is going to make me happy.

There are a couple of things I know I need – a new winter coat for dark early mornings ( I haven’t bought one for a few years and the one I have is coming apart at the seams -literally)

A navy T-Shirt dress which I have been looking for, for months, and cannot find

Possibly a pair of gloves- I haven’t seen any in my winter stuff as yet.

These are my ‘allowed’ purchases over the next six months. Other than that I am going to go cold turkey. During this time I am going to journal and see how it feels. I can tell you now I feel fear. How will I cope with no new clothes? What is my wardrobe going to look like? I can answer this one…very much the same as it does now. I have enough cardigans and jumpers to get me through the winter. I know all about layering so I can stick a vest under my clothes. I am going to have to delete all email newsletters from retail stores tempting me like a magpie with the funky prints and jewel bright colours. Why would I do this? Because as I am I am using a scattergun approach to buying and wearing, and it still doesn’t bring me happiness and I can sense there’s something much deeper to this persistent buying of clothes. That I am linking it to a sense of identity in some way and tying my internal happiness up with an external gratification that I am just not getting anyway. I’m looking forward to spending the next six months identifying and connecting more with this. Mostly anyway. Part of me is actually terrified at the thought of not buying anything.

So that’s it. Aside from the parka, and possibly a navy dress if it crosses my horizon I am going to live with what I have and explore what that feels like. I am planning to adapt a couple of the items I have to make them into something slightly different. I’ll report back each month, and if anyone identifies with these feelings and is brave enough to join me, let’s link up and report back together.



2 thoughts on “The biggest minimalist challenge I’ve undertaken”

  1. Are you any good at sewing? Sometimes just shortening the hem on a skirt, or taking a dress in here and there so it fits better can be the difference between feeling good in something and wanting to wear it – or leaving it on the hanger. I’m all about comfort too though – unless it’s for some fancy dinner or party I want to be comfortable – as well as stylish!


    1. I’m not good at sewing, although it is something I’ve been thinking about. Like you I prefer to be comfortable and thinks like poorly fitting shoulders and things that don’t fit well don’t inspire me. Plus I’d like to be able to make my own clothes. thinking I might sign up to a course next year when financial commitments allow. Thanks for the idea x


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