One Shirt, Two Shirts, Red Shirt, Blue Shirt

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Hi, My name is Amanda and I have a problem.

(That’s where it starts right..)

When I find a shirt I like, I buy it in every color. Or at least I buy it in two or three colors. 
Now, there may be a line of reasoning somewhere that says this isn’t such a bad idea. I mean, when you really like something, why not have multiples of it? The problem comes when this is not a one time process. And I mean, really, how many striped polo shirts does one person need? Because I have a green striped one, a blue one, an orange one, and a grey one. Or how many solid color shirts does one need? Because I could create the rainbow several times over. Not to mention the reality is, I typically have one shirt that I love and wear weekly and then four others that I may wear maybe once a year. 
Therefore, in my quest to simplify, minimize, and get back to placing my worth on who I am and not what I own, I have begun a purging process to get rid of those multiples. 
Take my polo shirts for example. I have a grey striped one that I love. I have a skirt that it matches perfectly and grey is a color I wear a lot. It is a key piece of my weekly waredrobe. The orange striped one I bought and wore once. Its just not one of those colors I wear hence it got put in the give away pile. The green striped one is exactly the same as my grey striped one. They are both from Gap and I bought them at the same time. But the green one doesn’t really go with much and I think I have worn it twice. Item number 2 in my give away pile. Lastly, my blue striped one. This one was a bit harder. I haven’t worn in much lately, but it used to be a staple piece and something I wore every week. For now it sits in my “potential give away pile.” It will probably eventually wind up in the give away pile once I get over the sentimentality of it and realize that after 8 years, it may just be time to retire it. 
I have been doing this with everything I have multiples of and it is amazing how little I wear the multiples. Thus they get put in the give away pile. Best part, because I have been getting rid of so much, I can’t even completely fill one box of clothes to send home! Not only does that save me money, I don’t miss any of those clothes in the give away pile. In fact, I am relieved they are gone.  
However, its not getting rid of the clothes that is the biggest key. That is the start, but the bigger challenge comes the next time I find a shirt I love. It is then I will have to guard against the tempation to buy it in multiples because really how often are you going to wear the same tank top in blue, purple, orange, pink, black, and grey?  (and no that is not an exaggeration of my collection:))

Becoming a Minimalist

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While its maybe a little late in 2011 for resolutions, I am declaring a theme for the rest of the year.

Less is More
Experiments in Becoming a Minimalist

Living on a small island has developed in me a love for simplicity and as I start to determine what of my stuff I am going to ship home, I am realizing just how much I have that….I don’t need! So while I shipped 15 or so boxes out here, my limit for going home is four.
This is experiment #1: Get rid or give away 11 boxes of stuff-more if I can!
I want to keep the stuff I have collected from my travels so that will all go, but what is staying is the massive amount of clothing that I just don’t wear. As well as the belief that I must wear certain things or look a certain way or have a certain amount of stuff. I want a simpler life. I want the freedom to travel, to write, to experience, to create, and to start fresh. I want to purchase with social responsibility-knowing where my clothing comes from and making hard decisions on whether I actually need it or am just buying it because its cheap. And by re-allocating all the money I used to spend on clothes, I will have the freedom to travel, to write, to create, to dream, and to make those dreams a reality. So thanks to all those who have provided inspiration and motivation. Check out Miss Minimalist, One Dress Protest, and All of Us Revolution!
Now off to work on getting rid of stuff! 🙂