More money in the bank.
So a little update on how this de-cluttering is going, in short slowly. I sorted out just a fraction of my stuff and placed it ready for either selling or donating. Looking back on the purchasing of some of my stuff now. It just didn’t make any sense in buying it in the first place. I have duplicates of duplicates for everything I own, I have no need for 6 devices to either make a call on or record video on. I only ever wear my favourite coat and not the one that is used at funerals.
It got worse before it got better.
All this stuff I’m offloading was hidden from view before, so I tended to ignore it. After I had sorted it out I deliberately left it in the way so I would have to deal with it. Climbing over stuff to get to bed at night sure is a good motivator for getting rid. The sales process has been slow I could have put a lot more effort in. I started with Gumtree and then shared the Gumtree posts on my Facebook and Twitter. I even tweaked a few of the prices of items over the past week. I have come to realise that marketeers are doing an amazing job to get people to buy new.
I also discovered that people offer a lower price than the one advertised. I just sold a £200 smartphone for £50 and later in the day I got a call saying I had forgotten to put the charger in the box. I didn’t offer the charger for sale and don’t really mind handing it over but £50 is a bargain for just the phone let alone any of the accessories.
The process I’m going through is fun although tough at times. It’s the letting go that feels weird. The things I’ve learnt are that any item you do purchase has no value to others once you have it. I also learned that if you are going to buy something it should be for life and not for short-term satisfaction.
I like cycling and hiking, I also have a YouTube channel which I used to post videos of my adventures. So I was looking into a drone to get some better shots. Whilst doing research on drones I discovered several things. The biggest is no one cares what equipment I use as long as it’s a good story. Any equipment I do buy is a complete waste of money as it adds no value to me at best it adds value to the person watching the video. They get the enjoyment out of my hard cash, this seems to be the wrong way round. I should be the one getting value from my own purchases. The next big thing I discovered is you can’t fly a drone in my area.
A good nights sleep.
De-cluttering my life has already started to have benefits, I now sleep better at night. I can’t say it’s down to getting rid of stuff but it’s been getting rid of the mental baggage. Once you start to clear the physical items the mental ones start to disappear too. I look at purchasing things differently, if it adds no value then I don’t buy it. Unless I have to buy something to keep me alive (food) or to keep me warm (shelter / clothing) I wait at least a week before making the decision. Usually by the end of the week I come to the conclusion that I don’t need it so save my money.
The next round.
I am now starting on the rest of the stuff that’s just in the way. There’s a huge amount to sort through and get rid of. As I move stuff I find more stuff I just don’t need anymore or more precisely didn’t need in the first place.
My minimalism will be different from your minimalism.
Today I was thinking about where all that unwanted and discarded stuff goes. The recycling centre, the land fill or is it put to any use.
I have some scuba equipment which I no longer wish to carry from country to country. After all I can just hire dive gear in the destinations I want to dive in. I spent over £1000 on equipment I hardly use, I can understand that kind of investment if I was going to pursue a career in the dive industry. I have sorted it all out and put it for sale on the website called Gumtree. I was surprised at how quickly the enquiries came rolling in. I sold my buoyancy control device within 24hrs of placing an ad and have already had messages asking about other items. When learning to scuba dive I ended up with a huge pile of manuals, DVDs and dive slates. They too have been sorted, photographed and advertised for sale.
Underneath my bed in a dusty box was a Panasonic Video Player. I dusted it down and plugged it in to ensure everything worked. I have put it up for sale for £20 as it’ll make an ideal project for someone converting VHS tapes to digital. I’m currently looking at 20 or so DVD’s that I’ll no longer play. So today these will be donated to my nearest charity shop. I’m sure someone would buy them from Gumtree but the time involved in uploading images, writing a description packaging the item and walking to the post office, is just not worth the effort.
I had originally put an e-commerce store on one of my websites but decided that donating and selling the items is quicker using Gumtree. There are other websites available to me with a large audience so I’m sure within a short space of time all this stuff will be gone. I will give each website a go until I have sold or donated most of my stuff.
I have also found that entering keywords on social media can put you in touch with people who can get use out of items I no longer need. Although I didn’t need them in the first place I was just sucked in by consumerism. I searched Twitter for photography and came up with an infinite list of potential opportunities to sell my camera equipment.
I have been putting items I want to donate or sell on my bed so that way I don’t ignore the clutter. I have to sort out and actually do something with the items before I can go to sleep at night. This is proving fruitful as I have taken photos of all the items I want to sell. I have then uploaded them to the Internet for all to see, and buy.
Shredding all those unwanted documents has become quite therapeutic. I have scanned important documents and photos so I now have digital copies. This of course creates vast amounts of free space.
One area I am determined to declutter is the 16 domain names I have registered. Some of these domain names and subsequent websites are a source of income so I need to maintain them. However I have several websites I have used in the past for learning web development. I no longer need more than 1 website to use as a blogging platform. I’m pretty sure I can reduce these 16 websites down to 3 of my own and 3 for clients. Ultimately though I actually need a total of 100 websites because this will then give me a passive income and I can just continue to travel full-time.
I’m going hiking for a couple of days and although this will mean my de-cluttering will stop. It means I can get out into nature and enjoy my new lifestyle as well as spend time deciding what area to focus on next.