But Really, Where Is Your T.V.?
"Gorgeous!!! But where's the T.V.?" was the response a friend of mine had after seeing a photo I had texted to her of our living room. I had just spent the afternoon re-arranging the space, with the focus of adding in more seating. Having family and friends over was something that I wanted to prioritize in the New Year, which meant shedding what I no longer needed in order to create space. The first thing to go? Our T.V.
Though it was only a couple years old at the time, it had slowly worn on me... Our living room is my favorite place to curl up with a book and cup of tea at the beginning and end of each day, and it had driven me crazy that sitting right across from me was this big black box. Not only did it require a media cabinet, it also took up a good deal of floor space, and presented the interior design challenge of what to do with the wall space above it. I was ready for it to go.
Aesthetic reasons aside, I had been mulling over the intrinsic value of owning a T.V. Did it really add anything to our lives? Instead of having our meals at our nice dining room table, my husband and I often found ourselves hunched over the coffee table, eating our dinner while watching an hour of Netflix. It was only after the show was done that we would sit back and really talk about our day. I have a feeling that we're not alone here... Did you know that the average American adult watches 33 hours of T.V. every week. 33 hours. That's 1,716 hours per year that Americans spend in front of the big screen. If you divided that number by 24 hours you would get 71.5 days spent purely watching T.V. I knew that this was not what I wanted for our family's life; and that a cautionary change was going to have to be made.
For most of America we've all grown up watching T.V. It was simply something that everyone had and, if your anything like our families, your family had at least two. As kids, we would spend an average of 30 - 60 minutes watching T.V. per day and maybe 60 - 120 minutes on the weekend. It was okay for us to watch T.V. however it was certainly encouraged for us to play outside. I feel that my parents' relaxed attitude was beneficial for me, as its helped me to make informed decisions about my own T.V. usage years later.
It took my husband and I awhile to come to the decision to let go of our T.V. We started off by observing how much we consumed and considered other ways that we could use our time (talking, reading, working on projects, going on long walks, etc.). We also thought about ways in which we could still watch some T.V. and movies (our tablet and computer), since we did find pleasure those things. The next step was removing the T.V. from the living room all together and putting it in another room for several weeks. It sat there unplugged while we spent time determining if this was something that was worth it. This was our turning point. We found that over the following weeks we ate our dining room table more often, had more meaningful conversations, read more, and were more apt to go outside. Together we felt more present and aware of how we could use our home.
I'm not saying that owning a T.V. is a bad thing... all I'm doing is encouraging our community to evaluate this thing that we often don't think twice about owning, and consider its benefit. T.V. is not bad in and of itself. Like anything, it can be abused. We can use it as an escape, as a way to numb ourselves and avoid living a life. Consider if your family is doing this, and if so what positive changes could be made. What would your family look like without this item in it's life? How would each of you benefit?
Giving every item in your kitchen a home from your wine stopper to your Kitchen Aid mixer is the key to maintaining an organized kitchen. There is no question about where something goes after your done using.
Y'all have been asking, so today I'm finally sharing with you the resources that I initially used to learn about minimalism and simplifying my life. The concept of "minimalism" had been buzzing around for a year or so before I finally decided to look into it to see what it was all about.
Setting goals for yourself is a great way to get there but its important that when coming up with your goals that you make them attainable (a.k.a. there's a chance that you will achieve them).
Living a debt-free lifestyle is a lot more tangible than people may think. When we spend without thinking and live beyond our means we often times find ourselves stressed out and living paycheck to paycheck. Its only after we get rid of the clutter and stop buying just for buying's sake that we will begin to attain a sense of financial peace and freedom.
A friend of mine recently asked a question on her Instagram stories: "Help! What do I do with my kids' artwork?" Not having kids of my own I didn't have an answer for her but was curious as to what the response would be. Like her, a lot of parents find that their kids are bringing home at least one to two pieces of artwork per day.
"I've learned to have the mindset that nothing is too precious", she explained. If a piece isn't working out she'll subsequently go over it or throw it out. She doesn't feel the need to hold on.
Over the past year by doing a little problem solving and prep-work we've been able to minimize some of our kitchen waste by implementing a few practices.
I am a believer that we all have to get to a place where we are broken and realize that "somethings gotta' give" before we ready to make a change. We're all marathon runners at heart but after a while our legs are going to give out. We all get to this point eventually because we are human.
Coffee shops and our phones are just a couple examples of distractions or "noise", that we encounter on a daily basis. This "noise" can disguise itself in many forms, from physical possessions and interior spaces, to the thoughts that we play on repeat.
Not only are natural storage containers a healthier choice for you and your family, they are also less harmful to the environment. Bonus they are way more stylish and are often more durable! For example, items made out of real wood, especially older wood, are quite strong.
Friends, it took me a long time to get to this point. For most of my childhood and early adult years I was a complete pack-rat. I would hold onto clothes, gifts, home décor accents, and family heirlooms that I no longer used, desired, or needed for fear of three things.
It may sound simple but incorporating trays into your home is a great way to minimize clutter! These objects are not just pretty and fun to use when styling but they are extremely useful in providing boundaries.
One of the biggest pieces of advice that I give to people when they are feeling completely overwhelmed is to take a few breaths and create a to-do list.
One of the side-effects that I've come to notice about de-cluttering is that the more you commit to it, the more you are committing to a life of health and wellness.
One of the services that we offer here at Making Room for Peace is getting your home ready to sell. Whether that looks like a decluttering session or a home-staging session, we are here to help! No matter what type of service your looking for, your end goal is to create a space that is bright and airy, spacious and clean, and one that buyers can envision themselves living in.
As we walked through her space, evaluating what could be done in order to enhance it, I began to feel her weariness in the form of defensiveness. I wasn't suggesting anything too major, just a little bit of re-arranging and de-cluttering however I could sense her becoming overwhelmed.
This 362 square foot home is tucked inside the quiet, artistic streets of Venice, California and is home to Whitney Leigh Morris and Adam Morris, along with their two pups and baby boy, West... By only having what they use and love, they are able to make their small space work. Whitney's motto is that: you don't have to live large to live beautifully.
To an extent, we all need stuff in our lives: food, water, shelter, clothing, and companionship. The stuff only becomes a problem when it begins to dictate our life and distract us from the values that we hold. It becomes an issue when our money and possessions are what we find our value and identity in.
I really latched onto the idea of "shedding" things and "minimalism" a couple of years ago, after learning of the author, blogger, and speaker, Joshua Becker, of Becoming Minimalist. Hearing his story about discovering minimalism and how it changed his life, really struck a cord with me and propelled me on this journey of seeing minimalism as more than just a trend...
The journey of minimizing was not always an easy one. While my husband was kind enough to get on board early on he was not always as inclined to get rid of things as quickly as I was.
"Gorgeous!!! But where's the T.V.?" was the first response of a close friend of mine, after texting her some pictures of our home. I had just spent the afternoon re-arranging our living room and dining room, with the focus of adding in more seating.