January Challenge: A Month of Minimalism

A new year is upon us! Behind us is a month of excess in many areas of life and now we’re all vowing that this new year will mark a turning point. It’s a fresh page. A new start.

The excesses of the Christmas and New Year period aren’t all bad. Everyone deserves a break. A couple of mince pies and a glass of wine. A cheesy Christmas film on the telly. But too much of it can be a bad thing, and by now most people are feeling the effects. 

The weirdest thing about December for me is the way that the regular structures of our normally so well-scheduled lives completely break down. In the days between Christmas and New Year we stumble around bleary-eyed, still in our pajamas at 11am, not quite sure what day of the week it is. It’s fun for a while, but it gets old pretty quickly.

Now that it’s January I can’t wait to get back into my structured routine. Only Mr W just announced this morning that the kids don’t go back to nursery until the 13th, so we have another couple of weeks of “holiday” to fill in. Oh well. Mince pie anyone?

But All Is Not Lost

Me and Mr W like to think that we’re minimalists who don’t fall into the trap of overconsumption at Christmas. But December has been a time of excess for us too, much as we hate to admit it. Too much food, too much alcohol, too much “stuff” entering our lives in the form of well-meant but completely unsuitable gifts. Too much time spent with family (i.e. us, the kids, and Mr W’s parents. Together. 24/7.)

In the FI community we all go through our expenses item by item to identify and cut out unnecessary and wasteful stuff. Me and Mr W have decided it’s time to start going through our actual physical stuff as well and get rid of the unnecessary things.

We’ve had several clearouts over the last couple of weeks, but we still seem to have So. Much. Stuff. So we’ve decided to play a little game. Every day in January, Mr W and I will each be getting rid of a number of things. Today, on Day 1, we’ll each get rid of one thing. Tomorrow, on Day 2, we’ll each get rid of two things. You get the picture. Whichever one of us manages to keep going the longest has to cook an extra specially delicious meal for the other.

Follow Our Progress

You’ll be able to follow our progress on facebook and twitter. At the end of the month we’ll post a summary of the challenge here on the blog as well (including a picture of the extra specially delicious meal).

Why Not Join Us?

You’re also welcome to join in with our challenge and post about your own progress on social media. You can use the hashtag #MinsGame to join the thousands of other people who’ve played the game. (A huge thank you to The Minimalists for the idea, and for a tonne of other invaluable tips over the years!) You can also use the hashtag #WLCBmins so we can find your posts more easily.

We’ll be doing some sort of challenge each month in 2019 – we’re open to ideas for the February challenge!