the joy of letting go

Interesting how getting rid of so much seems to make life a lot busier! As my previous posts explain, my husband and I are downsizing by moving to a smaller suite next week. I know that once the mayhem is over, we will enjoy our efficient home in a spacious manner.

With a minimalist mindset, we have been paring down for years. However, with a reduction in square feet, even more items have to go. I have been selling and giving away many things on Kijiji and Bunz, as well as donating to charities. So many interesting people have walked through my life in the last couple of weeks and the conversations have been lovely. A mom needed Continue reading

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leaving facebook

everything from old ipad 972

Sea turtle rescues on video, lengthy political rants and daily selfies. Multiple captures of tasty food and romantic moments. 25 versions of outrage about an appalling news item. It is time to turn down the volume.

For a couple of months I have rehearsed the idea of stepping away from Facebook. After seven years of being able to peer at the veneer of people’s lives, I thought it was time to analyze the purpose of this digital connection. This exploration has inspired me to converse with people who use it regularly, and a few who have either deleted their profile or were never on Facebook. Continue reading

an organized view of a minimalist’s wardrobe

A photo of author Jo Bennett wearing a structured 40's inspired wool hat.

My Lillie and Cohoe winter hat happily received by a colleague.

I don’t have enough clothes.

Folks who know me could take this statement two ways. It may not be a surprise that my wardrobe is small. My Facebook friends are used to my photo posts, featuring many formerly-loved items I want to give away, such as evening wear, hats, jewelry and handbags. I drop off clothes in good condition at Goodwill about four times a year. On the other hand, should a minimalist desire to own more things? Ultimately, my goal is to be aware of what I need and what I want. Continue reading

what our stuff means to us

As a Life Coach, I accompany clients as they emotionally and mentally ‘declutter’ and the topic of physical disorganization comes up as an additional barrier to engaging meaningfully with their life work. This lead me to pursue over the past year training courses with The Professional Organizers of Canada (POC) to provide me with additional context and understanding. While reviewing my POC class notes, I was reminded of several reasons why we are so attached to certain ‘things’ and therefore it may be difficult to let them go. I decided to post a discussion about this on my Facebook page and it proved to be a hot topic! I mentioned that certain objects may:

  • provide a sense of security,
  • portray status,
  • contribute to our identity,
  • represent family/friends/memories.

I asked my friends and colleagues to reflect on these points and, with their permission, here are several of their responses: Continue reading

minimalism 101

A photo of a wooden floor, clear and clean, lit up by a setting sun, revealing doorways into several rooms.

Clear lines, clear mind (photo by Jo)

Are you a minimalist?

For over 15 years I have been shedding whatever I perceive to be in my way of living a satisfying life. I don’t remember exactly how this transformation started but I suspect I have been conditioned for it: years ago, living an artist’s life required moving from place to place, transferring whatever possessions that could fit into a borrowed car. However, that just answers the question regarding physical objects. When asked what it is I get out of minimalism, I reply “truth”. So to talk the walk, I believe that managing toxic relationships since I began adulthood is likely the birthplace of my perspective. Once powerful barriers (guilt from expectations mostly) were removed, then I could see the landscape that is my life. Continue reading