I Played the 30 Day Minimalism Game, This Is What I Got Rid Of

Two people who I admire very much are Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, also known as The Minimalists. If you aren’t familiar with their work, they have a series of articles and podcasts on their website along with a popular documentary on Netflix.

They challenge anyone interested in getting stuff out of their homes and lives to play a game that involves getting rid of one thing on the first day of the month. On the second, two things. Three things on the third, and so on. Books, clothes, tools, decorations, anything you’d like. It’s pretty easy at first but gets more difficult as time goes on.

When I tell people that I try to live as minimally as possible, they usually don’t believe that I’ve gotten rid of 400+ items in the last year. I never thought that I could get to that point either, but I have.

I played the minimalism game every weekend. I went room by room, closet by closet, and drawer by drawer in my apartment looking for items that I knew I didn’t want or even need. I filled up two laundry baskets, some cardboard boxes, and trash bags with junk.

I recycled or threw away:

  • Magazines
  • Old birthday, Christmas, and greeting cards that didn't hold a special meaning
  • Socks and tights with holes or little to no elastic left
  • Hair ties and headbands with worn out elastic
  • Old financial information I didn’t need (which I shredded to protect myself from identity theft)
  • Dried up pens, art supplies, and broken pencils
  • Unfixable costume jewelry
  • Old batteries
  • Dried up nail polish
  • Expired soup mixes
  • Take out menus
  • Old pageant hair rollers
  • Empty perfume bottles
  • Multiple CDs with files/photos on them (I downloaded the files I needed onto my hard drive first)

I sold to Half Price Books:

  • Textbooks I hadn’t used since undergrad
  • Books I wouldn’t read again
  • CDs
  • DVDs

I donated:

  • Electronic accessories that I didn’t need
  • Candleholders
  • Buckets
  • Mugs
  • Mesh bags
  • Jewelry boxes
  • 5k medals from charity races
  • Koozies
  • Kitchen canisters
  • A tiny cutting board
  • Table decorations
  • Clothes
  • Shoes
  • Makeup bags
  • Office supplies I didn’t need
  • Plastic food containers
  • Two wicker baskets
  • Painted wine glasses
  • Random junk from the Dollar Store
  • Magazine holders
 I almost donated this mug but realized it would make a great succulent holder. If you look really closely, you can see a straw behind this little guy. He started growing too fast and needed a kind of "brace" to keep him from snapping...so I tied him with floss to a straw :) 

I almost donated this mug but realized it would make a great succulent holder. If you look really closely, you can see a straw behind this little guy. He started growing too fast and needed a kind of "brace" to keep him from snapping...so I tied him with floss to a straw :) 

This list may not seem like a lot, but when you have multiples of small items, it can add up quickly. I’m in the process of donating larger items like furniture to a local nonprofit and have made it a goal to get rid of another 100 items before the end of this month. With a bit of persistence and a few minutes a day, you too can rid your life of senseless clutter.