At the beginning of this year when I relocated from Sydney to Melbourne, I was provided with free accommodation for a month in a self-serviced apartment. I had decluttered almost all my belongings and everything I owed consisted on a couple of large suitcases of clothes and some basic furniture which was being shipped over.
In this time of transition, while I was living out of a suitcase and did not want to accumulate any possessions until I had permanent accommodation, I realised the value and freedom and living simply.
This small, studio-sized self-serviced apartment had everything I needed: a small kitchen with basic utensils, a washing machine and dryer, small dishwasher and a comfortable bed and bathroom. There was no clutter and no excess.
These are the top 5 minimalist lessons I learned while living in a hotel (or self-serviced apartment):
- Clutter of the home is a reflection of clutter in the mind.
Most of my possessions in the 2 large suitcases were clutter and not used on a day-to-day basis. I spent more time dusting these things than using them and instead of providing value to my life, they served as negative distractions.
- One large suitcase of clothes is more than enough to dress me all year round.
A small, good quality wardrobe is more than enough for any occasion: from cocktail parties to casual weekend wear to corporate workwear. A handful of high quality, key basics (such as a nice blazer or pair of stilettos) is key to dressing up lower-priced seasonal items.
- I don’t need a large, well-equipped kitchen to cook and meal-prep.
I discovered that a basic, good quality kitchen is all you need: a fridge, quality set of knives, a chopping board, 1 pot, 1 frying pan and 1 saucepan is more than enough to make any dish. Eleven months later, I still don’t have a microwave, freezer or fancy small appliances.
- With few possessions, items become multi-purpose.
I used to have a misconception that there needed to be an item to serve a single purpose or activity. Now I make sure that whatever I purchase has at least 2 purposes. When I lived in a hotel, I used a beach towel as a yoga mat for a month.
- I used to make excuses for buying things.
As I was in a situation where I could not to accumulate anything while in temporary accommodation, I realised that I used to buy things to quickly solve a problem instead of thinking creatively about what I already owned which could be repurposed. Once I owned the basics, there is very little I actually need to have the comfortable and luxurious lifestyle that I have built around myself.
These are lessons which I still try to implement in my day-to-day and along with my financial goals, they have helped me become more self-aware, focused and happy within myself.
Have you had any travel or living experiences where you lived simply and learned something from it? Comment below!
xx Miss Piggy