Declutter/Minimalist Challenge (a.k.a. The Minimalist Game)

This month I am determined to declutter.

My house isn’t a clutter-fest, but there are corners and some rooms that just have too much stuff in them (my office mainly). It seems as though when no one knows exactly where something goes, they put it in my office. My office has accumulated an array of items from broken sunglasses to a couple of gallon bags of seashells, from leftover charging cords to Christmas wrapping paper. Many a day I have sat at my desk wondering why this stuff is in here.

While G and I were in New York, she told me about “37 Things,” a system to declutter one’s wardrobe. The day after we returned home, we drug everything out of my closet and whittled it down. I love the results (I will be writing a post about that adventure in the near future) and was describing the process to some friends of mine when they told me The Minimalist Game, a challenge of sorts to declutter and reduce the stuff in one’s life.

The idea is to get rid of a number of things that coincide with the day of the month, so day 1 throw away, sell, or give away 1 thing; day 2 throw away, sell, or give away 2 things; day 3 throw away, sell, or give away 3 things; so on and so on for 30 or 31 days. By the end of the month, 465 (or 496) things should have found their way out of your house and out of your life forever.

I want to play.

For the past two weeks, I’ve been eyeing things in my house in preparation for the Big Toss that starts today, June 1st. What is going to be the first thing that I toss, sell, or donate?  I identified some things, but I then notice that the one thing is really a part of a group of things that can actually be tossed, sold, or donated on one of the larger numbered days, which I’ve read, is when most people lose the game. I don’t want to fail on one of the big days because I broke up a group of things. I’m trying to think ahead and plan my attack. I don’t like to lose!

Last night, I finally found the first thing to begin the game: an empty box.

I bought a Photive HYDRA portable Bluetooth speaker and was planning to repurpose the box as packaging for a future gift. Socks or a couple of scarves would fit perfectly inside this sturdy little receptacle.


That is exactly why I need to throw it out. I have a lot of empty boxes intended for repurpose floating around my office and closet. I’m tired of them, and they make my office look ugly. Into the recycle bin that well-constructed beauty went this morning.

It felt good – really good – to toss that box. I feel supercharged! I want to start purging everything! My eye has lit upon several things that I have continually moved from place to place on the kitchen counter and never thought much of until now. Now I look at them with a suspicious eye, giving them a silent warning that I’m calculating which day they will be next. Nothing in my house is safe anymore. Everything is held suspect: it has the reset of the month to prove worth or be tossed.

There are three shoe boxes I have tagged to go on Wednesday morning. I’m still on the look out for what goes on Day 2.

2 thoughts on “Declutter/Minimalist Challenge (a.k.a. The Minimalist Game)

  1. I have been getting rid of things as well. I get addicted to the county exchange site, and all have been warned! #if it’s not nailed down

  2. lol…Love it. I remember the 1st, 2nd or maybe it was the 3rd time Kryz moved back in for a stay and we started de-cluttering…she was here for a year and it took us nearly that long. We had moved here from a very large house with a huge basement to store stuff and I had not downsized well.
    She was merciless having spent years keeping only what she could fit in the hatch of her little Honda Civic. I would oo and ahhh over something and she would look at me and say, calmly and without emotion…”Mom, when you die, I am going to throw that away”. The first time she did it, I nearly cried that she didn’t see the importance of that scrap of paper or old T-shirt. 🙂 I got used to it and at the end, in November, we had a huge Thanksgiving ‘give away’…
    We filled our downstairs room with tables and racks and then filled them with everything from well, you know, it was full. Then we got on fb (I’m sure we had fb then) we told our friends at church and Bible study, and work, come one come all, take what you want, what you will use, what you know someone else will use, it’s free, we only saved the good stuff!
    We had the best time!!! All day, friends in and out and Bible study that night, more stuff left, we had a few stranger walk in and ask if for sure it was free? Yup, pay it forward. We barely had a trunk load left to take to Good Will when it was over. My daughter made me really proud when a teen age friend called the next day to tell us that there was $20 in a pair of Kryz’s jeans that she had gotten and Kryz said ‘hey, it’s your lucky day!’
    I did it again, on a smaller scale with my Christmas decorations this year.
    Now I just keep a box on the back porch and toss in what needs gone. I think I might just give the ‘game’ a go and see what I can’t live without this month. 🙂 Happy Gaming!!

What are your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s