Erin Boyle, author of Simple Matters, believes that living simply and purposefully is a step in the right direction for the environment and our own personal happiness. In both her book and blog, Reading My Tea Leaves, Boyle shares great advice on a variety of topics including small space and simple living. Here is some of what we’ve learned from Boyle:
- Brainstorm before buying: When looking for a solution for something be it a cabinet or shelf for storage, we often gravitate to the web and look for the product. Boyle suggests before buying, take some time to brainstorm alternate solutions. Do you already have something that you can serve that purpose? Can you repurpose something? Build something with materials you have? The point here, think before buying.
- Maximize light: Boyle suggests letting in as much natural light as possible. She recommends selecting curtains that let in the most light, like white curtains, and also hanging a mirror opposite the window to let the light reflect in the room.
- Give away as much as you bring in: To keep clutter to a minimum, Boyle suggests giving away items she no longer needs, especially as she brings something else into her home. For example, for every new clothing purchase, give an old clothing piece away.
- Put things away immediately: Boyle recommends to have a home for everything. This way, when something is not being used and out of place, you know exactly where to put it away. She also suggests, to put things away as soon as possible to maintain a clutter free home.
- Enjoy what you have: Boyle recommends taking a breath and reflecting on what you already have. We often think we need to buy something new, without appreciating all the wonderful objects we already own. When you have some quiet time, take a look around your home and study the beautiful objects and furniture you already own. You may feel less of a need to buy more.