I have ALWAYS been a slob. I have been known to discard my clothes on the bedroom floor when changing, resulting in a massive pile of dirty laundry at the end of the week. There wasn’t a single room in the house I could go and not find one of my socks. Seriously. In the kitchen I tended to leave all wrappings and paper plates on the counter and deal with them when my wife demanded me to clean it up. There are many more ways that I didn’t clean!
This is why I changed.
- My Wife – Jessica is the sweetest person in the world. She loves me and puts up with me, even when I give her a hard time. She tells me all the time that she doesn’t want me to see her as a nagging wife. Naturally, this leads to her giving me subtle hints when she would like me to do something. I cannot read these subtle hints. At all. To get me to do something, you have to just tell me straight. That’s not her style and that’s okay!
I started noticing how stressed Jessica was getting and I wanted to know why. It didn’t take me long to figure it out once I actually paid attention. She was exhausted. She teaches all day long, comes home and immediately teaches 2 or 3 piano lessons, cooks dinner, and tries to clean a little. She was overwhelmed and I was part of the problem. I love her, wanted to change for her, and I knew EXACTLY where to start…
She HATES doing the dishes. It is the worst part of cleaning for her. So I decided to become a human dishwasher and let her focus on other things. She loves that I do that for her and she tell me all the time that she gets stressed less when she doesn’t have to wash the tons of dirty dishes in the sink. I also try to not leave clothes and paper everywhere. It has definitely helped our relationship!
- Minimalism – About a month ago, I stumbled upon a documentary about Minimalism on Netflix. It was the Minimalists documentary about their tour and their views on getting rid of the clutter in their lives. I decided to watch it because I love documentaries and it looked interesting. I absolutely LOVED their points about material possessions, bad relationships, and digital addictions. Many of their points stemmed from the Bible (even if they didn’t specifically point that out) and sounded like solid advice. I decided to try to get rid of the excess in my life and focus on what matters to me. I became a minimalist of sorts.
I was enjoying my results from de-cluttering, so I suggested it to my wife, thinking she wouldn’t go for it. She jumped on the bandwagon immediately. Since then, we have been going through each item in every room throughout our house to question whether or not we have used it or if it even has any value to our lives. Most things we encountered were a “no.”
We haven’t finished the whole house, but we have completed the kitchen, dining room, living room, and our bedroom. There is nothing on the floors and very few items on the furniture/counters. It looks bare and strange, but it feels GREAT. There is no stress in finding things, cleaning is a breeze, and Jessica is free to add simple decorations to make the house look terrific. Plus, I would feel guilty if I dirtied up a really clean house, so I help out all the time. We have donated and sold SO MUCH.
I would encourage you to go through your living space and get rid of things that you never use or that you have “just because you might need it.” Be proactive in keeping your house clean. We can’t take anything with us when we die and it will just accumulate and stress you out. Ironically, possessions are sold to you with the promise of happiness, but ultimately end up causing you stress and discontent. Let go and be liberated from feeling like you have to own all that stuff. It’s your choice and only you get to decide what brings you true joy. Good luck!