Sunday, 28 September 2014

Let go of (unnecessary) things to FOCUS on the important things

If you have a hard time actually letting go of things, especially clothes, and if you're like me, it really boils down to the guilt of wasting money if I were to let go of an item. This is particularly true if the item is relatively new and I have been trying to incorporate it to my wardrobe without much success (i.e. it doesn't get enough wear).

These are the summary of my thoughts process on the issue:
I have already spent the money to buy the clothes (or whatever item) and letting it stay unused is equal to getting it wasted, I am not getting any value from its presence in my closet.
I can convince myself that I am getting some sort of value – because of some irrational attachment or whatever, but if I were to be honest with myself, I am actually not because every time I see it, I am reminded of the mistake I've made and the financial costs attached to that mistake. We are all human, we make mistakes, it happens. Learn from it and move on. I don’t need a daily reminder, really.
The real cost of letting an item stay in my closet is more than its initial purchase price. It costs me some form of resources, be it financial or time or at least, mental capacity, to maintain it, clean it, store it, move/transport it.

The highest cost is this: having unwanted stuff amongst my wanted stuff distracts my focus. Lack of focus is dangerous because it makes me more prone of making mistakes. I am a big believer in making my life easier be creating an environment that’s conducive of clarity and light.

Since I am  not getting any positive value out of it, I have decided to let it go, cut my losses. Donate it and let it have a chance in someone else's closet; or sell it, if it's worth the trouble (read: if I can afford the time and resources). I have very little patience for these things and for the non-profit that I made from my last round of putting stuff for sale on ebay, donation works best for me.

I have been letting go of a lot of things from my apartment, I did not even realise that I had so much stuff. This has been liberating on so many front, primarily because it allows me to focus on the most important things: the things that you cannot buy with money.

Simple is not always easy, but it is a worth while exercise.

Friday, 12 September 2014

one step closer towards a fuller life: working on a new me

i signed up to a further 6 weeks of yoga this week, or to be precise, two lots of lessons. in first batch, we are given a goal, the crow, and in the second, we are working towards a stronger core, i.e stomach and lower back. yoga was previously fun and relaxing, but not so much these days. i think it's good because we are now in the next stage of improvement. as always i was being a wuss and ended up whinging and whining. then again, my right shoulder was playing up (it is weak, so...) and when there is physical pain, it is really hard to be positive about life.

i was tagged in an ice-bucket challenge by a dear friend who thought that "i could do it". and yes, i guess i could, and i am not doing it out of principle. it is not about donating to charity (although this is a different discussion altogether), it is the fact that i think doing an ice bucket challenge is just plain silly, not to mention wasteful. no offence to everyone else who participated or going to participate - you do whatever floats your boat. this does not float mine.

so in lieu of doing an ice bucket challenge, i am doing a no fried chicken challenge. as the name suggests, it entails me not eating fried chicken from Sep 2 till Sep 30. i am now in day 8 and have been experiencing 2 days (and counting) of fried chicken craving. this, coupled with a more challenging yoga routine, sound like a recipe for disaster. i honestly don't know how my will power will cope with this.

my yoga teacher said that we have to put in the effort towards a vision, while at the same time, not having an attachment to the outcome of our efforts. (she of course put it in much better words.) i am willing to put in the effort to do these in the hope that i will be a better person by the end of the month. don't know if i will be able to do the crow, only hoping that i become stronger in the next few weeks.

i guess in short, happy to report that this whole wardrobe simplifying slash mindful shopping principles have started to permeate to other aspects in my life. we'll get back to more discussion on wardrobe/closet/shopping stuff soon.

Friday, 5 September 2014

you have to have stuff before you can let go

... else there's nothing to let go.

As was cleverly pointed out to me the other day, this whole notion of downsizing and letting of stuff happen for people who have had the luxury of overindulging in excess stuff. Just like any other kind of excess, once you've had too much, you don't want it anymore.

My overindulgence experience makes me who I am today, and I am pretty okay work in progress, I think. There are still moments in which I wish that I had the wisdom and vision of knowing this before it happens, so that I can skip over the wasting money/resources while unnecessarily overindulging. At times I am mortified at my former self and how I used to approach spending and shopping.

But I focus on the good and the other things on my list that I'd like to become and concentrate my efforts in that direction. I try to be kind when it comes to the mistakes I've made in the past, and just move forward. This is hard, and necessary for progress.

In my latest round of downsizing, I am letting go of the things that I am lukewarm about. These are things that are, you know, oh-kayy, which found their way into my closet because I was too lazy to look for the item that would allow me to realise the vision I had in my head more closely. Specifically, these are:

(1) red coat - holy fucking shit, I love red coats. This has got nothing to do with the fact that I attended a school whose winter uniform included a red duffle coat, that I secretly loved; I guess now the secret's out. This has a lot to do with the fact that I love the colour red, it has the power to make me feel better, instantly.

(2) dark gray anything - I am living in dark gray everything this winter, I have been doing this since last winter and I realise that I am growing to love the colour more and more. I am not alone in this, I know this because I find myself in colour-related conversations discussing my love for dark gray anything. My love for this colour is almost as intense as my love for red.

(3) black - I was never into black until I met le boyf whose collection was black everything, until he met me and started wearing a lot of... red. Need I explain more? The people you love often influence your sense of style because they like to see you in a certain way. Le boyf dresses better than me, and being with me has resulted in me being more experimental with the things I wear. His sense of style is very stable, whereas mine is more all over the place. People who see us tend to think that I dress sloppily compared to him, but I swear it's just a different style. Or to put it differently, I am not as classically inclined as he is during the weekends that we are seen together.

This weekend, while it is pouring wet, yet again, I am going through my closet and asking the question "Do I love it?" and if the answer is no, the item has to go. Funny how the universe has the ability to carve out some time in your schedule to make you one step closer to the vision that you didn't realise you have: every item that stays my closet, I want to love them because of their quality.

Happy weekend and stay dry. x