I consume articles about minimalism like I do chocolate and Granny Smith apples. The trouble is that I haven't yet been able to transfer these much sought after yet elusive concepts in my life. I always recount the story of the day I sat in my friend's living room and realized there were seven things in the entire room. Literally, if seven people came in an each took one thing, the room would have been empty. It wasn't that I was striving to imitate someone else's look; it was that I truly felt at peace in that room. It turns out that visual clutter also clutters up my mind and spirit.
In our transition period right now, we are are amalgamating households to support my mother-in-law. While we search for an appropriate dual living space, we are all crammed into her house (which was bigger than our house - I'm not sure she would have wanted to sleep on the couch). This means two things: 1) most of our stuff we got rid of, or is in a small 10x10 locker space, and 2) most of my mother-in-law's stuff is what is filling our current space.
So I feel my hands are a little tied for the time being, and it's starting to mentally take its toll. I realized this lately as things started to slowly disappear from my bathroom counter. A few weeks back, I decided I didn't need two tubes of toothpastes, so I popped one back into the cupboard. A few days later, I took off the facecloth that sat there, unused. Then I decided the decorative jars didn't really need to be in the corner, and I moved them to the shelf.
Yesterday, as I went to brush my teeth, I looked at the long 36" counter and realized that only the things left on top were what we truly needed every day: toothbrushes, toothpaste, a cup and hand soap. I stood there for a minute and smiled. I had subconsciously been working toward minimalism.
Now it has moved into my conscious stream. Surfaces are my weakness. I'm eyeing that dresser and armoire top and my side table...