How reducing the clutter brings more calm

The longer I’ve been parenting, the more I’ve realised that by reducing the clutter, it brings more calm. The less inventory we have to manage, the happier we feel. Although my name highlights being savvy with money, if you’ve been around here a while you’d know that it’s not all that I’m about.

I’ve been on a journey of minimalism over the last few years. When I became a mother five years ago, I was suddenly aware of how stuff bothered me.

How it would stress me out.
Distract me from the task at hand.
Overwhelm me.
Make me feel anxious.
Dominate my time.
Steal my joy.

Speaking to many parents, I’d hear a common response- ‘you’ll get used to it.’ The gist was that kids just come with lots of stuff. It comes with the territory.

Learn to live with it because it ain’t going to change in a hurry.

However, not all responded like that. Some were like a breath of fresh air.

‘It doesn’t have to be this way.’ You can be a parent and have less stuff. You don’t have to spend your days picking up after your kids. You don’t have to have constant washing baskets all over the house. You don’t have to have toys scattered everywhere. It doesn’t need to be this hard.

This was a relief to me. It made sense to me. It was permission giving and empowering.

By learning how to live with less, I started decluttering what we didn’t need or love. This reduced the excess in our home, helped us to focus better and freed up space.

Selling the excess allowed me to fund better quality, open ended toys (think duplo, Lego, train sets and Connetix tiles). We have less stuff that gets played with more often.

We utilise the local toy library. This helps us to have a fresh rotation of toys, games and puzzles as often as we like. It keeps our boys engaged and reduces how much we need to own ourselves. Toy libraries reduce our carbon footprint and impact on the environment by not creating more items and also disposing of less.

I have more space in my house and less items to manage. This means less furniture to store toys on, less baskets and boxes. My children focus better on their play and use their creativity and imagination. They don’t get as distracted from what they are playing with because there is less choice. Packing up doesn’t take as long as it used to. I no longer spend my evenings tidying up and sorting out all the things. It means I can be more present in the daytime too and actively play with my boys, rather than stressing about the mess and cleaning up after them.

Becoming more minimal has improved our financial situation. We avoid shopping centres and junk mail catalogs that tell us we need more. We unsubscribe from pesky emails alerting us to new products and items on sale. It saves us money and means relatives don’t need to spend lots of cash on presents. Whatever we don’t use or love, we sell to fund toys that we will. We get outside more and enjoy free activities, or pay for fun experiences instead of lining shelves with more toys.

As I’ve continued to declutter our home, I’ve had more energy and brain space to begin some side hustles. This has turned mere hobbies into income streams.

Reducing our stuff has helped me thrive in my season of motherhood. I am more happy and present, able to live in the moment. I feel more calm. My children play better together and argue less about which toy is theirs. Being a mum doesn’t mean it has to be hard or have your days spent managing all the things.

Money, Minimalism and Motherhood is so closely intertwined for me. I can’t help but write about each of these things because one affects the other.

I love seeing women embrace and thrive in their stage of life (especially if you’re in the season of motherhood), manage their money well and live with less.

Thanks for being here and being part of this wonderful community. I’m so very grateful for you all.