“Minimalism is believing there is such a thing as enough.”
Whenever I tell someone that I am a minimalist and a mother, I typically get the same response: disbelief. Many people are under the impression that minimalism and motherhood are an oxymoron and not something that can go together.
But, in a world where childhood is cluttered with cellphones at 9, iPads attached to kid’s hands and toys spilling out of every closet, I believe that children need minimalism more than ever. Does living a minimalist life when you have children make it more challenging? Absolutely. But it is so, so essential.
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A year ago, when I started on this journey to minimalism, my apartment was cluttered with things I didn’t even remember I had, toys that my daughter never played with and clothes with tags still on them. My daughter’s bedroom was filled to the brim with “stuff” and something needed to change.
What minimalism has done for my life has been nothing short of incredible.
But do you know where I have seen the most change, and all in the best ways possible? With my beautiful little girl.
I have seen such a difference in her since embracing minimalism.
She has been involved in every step of the decluttering process and we have had so many conversations about the value of the things we keep in our life. We have all learned together and are on this journey with each other.
Read Also: How To Embrace Minimalism When You Have Kids
I will forever be grateful for minimalism and the impact it has had on my little girl.
I know it may seem like parents can’t be minimalists but I want to share with you five ways that minimalism has benefited my daughter. If you are in the same place as I was, and are searching for a change, I challenge you to try minimalism. Even if the only thing you do is declutter the kids’ toys so it is not as overwhelming and you don’t have to spend as much time cleaning as you do now. I promise, it will change your world and your little ones’ world too!
I will be the first to admit that before minimalism, my daughter asked for something everywhere we went and started asking for birthday gifts months before her birthday. She was constantly wanting more and never satisfied with what she had. I can also admit that that was our fault.
We have always loved doing for her and it got out of control at some point. And the funny thing is, I didn’t even realize it at the time! Until we decided to take the leap into minimalism, I had no idea how much we bought for her. Boy was it eye opening!
It took some time, and definitely some tears, but she has developed such a sense of gratitude today that she didn’t have before. She no longer begs us for something whenever we go to a store and when we do decide to indulge her, she is so excited and happy that it makes me just melt.
Through minimalism, she has learned to appreciate the wonderful toys and things that she already has. We have had so many conversations about why we donate toys and how lucky she is to have what she does. I feel so proud when I witness her gratitude!
2. A desire to be outside more.
Climbing trees. Roller skating. Riding on her scooter. Kicking the soccer ball around.
Since embracing minimalism, my daughter is outside so much more than she was before! Without the iPad always in her hand or spending an hour cleaning up her mess from playing, there is a ton more time to get out into nature and she has been taking advantage of it.
Even if it is just for 10 minutes, she is running laps outside and getting her energy out. She is picking flowers and talking to the birds. She is wondering at the smell of rain on the pavement and she is looking for rainbows. I am someone who feels so at peace and at home in nature and it has been so rewarding watching her connect more with nature!
3. An amazing imagination.
I always knew my little girl had a fantastic imagination but my gosh has it come to the surface in the past year! Sometimes I just sit and listen to the games she makes up or the stories she thinks of in her head and am just fascinated by the way her mind works.
Removing much of the clutter and distractions in our home and our life has allowed for her imagination to truly blossom. Children’s minds are so amazing and once they have the opportunity to really explore their imagination, wonderful things will happen.
4. Increased creativity.
Between building whole towns with Legos to writing a book, the creativity is just oozing out of my daughter these days. I have always tried to make arts and crafts a big part of our life and we are fully stocked at all times with markers, paint, paper and anything else you can think of really.
Since cutting down on the amount of time she spends on her iPad or in front of the TV, I have found her really using her creative side quite often. On the days where they don’t get to go outside for recess at school, she comes home with pages and pages of things she has drawn or written and it is one of my favorite things to find in her backpack!
I love seeing her creativity shine!
5. A sense of calm.
From the moment my daughter entered this world, she has had energy. She has never been a big sleeper, staying up for hours after putting her to bed and only napping when she is so tired she can’t function, and she honestly can go until she drops.
As someone who has anxiety, I have always been searching for a peace and calm that I had no idea how to achieve. But, I can honestly say that with minimalism, my home has a peacefulness to it that it never has before. And this goes for my little girl too.
She went from someone who had a hard time sitting through a TV show to someone who actually enjoys relaxing and having nowhere to be for a whole day. Removing the things in our life, whether that be around our home or the people we choose to surround ourselves with, that no longer serve us has been monumental in this transformation.
Today, she definitely has as much energy as the energizer bunny but with more time outside and using her imagination and creativity more, she has a sense of calm that she didn’t have before. A sense of peace and contentedness that we have been searching for for years and have finally found!
Mama, minimalism doesn’t have to mean throwing everything away in your home or getting rid of every toy your children have. Minimalism can mean simply being more intentional with what you surround yourself and your family with.
“Minimalism, as a lifestyle, is the art of letting go.” Letting go of anything that doesn’t bring you joy. Anything that doesn’t add meaning to your life. Whatever that looks like for you, I hope you are able to find the peace in your life that you have been looking for!