Almost a month in.. & taking French Language classes!

Its almost been a month since I last posted about my wanting to start with My Year of Less. So here is an update of how it has been for me so far.

It was a relatively successful month for me as far as not buying anything new. ( Almost ) My handbag that I carry to work gave away & I had no other option but to replace it. So I did buy a handbag for myself.

Also the 1 exception I made was a book a month. So I did get a book – Hiding in the Bathroom by Morra Aarons- Mele. Will be reviewing this book for sure as it speaks about a subject I am really into ( more on that in a later post )

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( To rectify this situation, in terms of spending less , I have subscribed to Amazon Kindle unlimited, so I wont be buying anymore books, Here’s hoping!! )

I have not managed to give away anything yet, but will get to that soon.

Another update about my life –  I am taking French classes , starting next month!

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It has been on my to do list for soooo long now. I have finally found a great teacher who is willing to accommodate me & my schedule & help me at my pace. Any tips for from others who have taken French language classes? Any tips will be helpful!

I would love to have people who speak fluent French leave me some comments about picking up the accent & also any suggestion on what might help me on my french language journey! See you in my next post!

xoxo Arpita

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Coffee Time – My Year of Less & Other Updates.

Helloooooooo!!

I am back after a long Sabbatical & I am so very happy about it! I always believe in doing things whole halfheartedly & not because it is supposed to be done. My blog write ups had become kind of a chore over the last few months & so I decided to take a breather & come back!

A lot has happened in my life this past year & my life has taken an entirely new direction. SO I have a lot to write about & share with you guys.

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A couple of months back, I read a book that really struck a chord with me all excited. It was a journey of a lady  named Cait Flanders. The book was called ” The Year Of Less “.The Theme of the book was how she stopped shopping, gave away her belongings & realized that life is more than anything you can buy at a store.

My travels over the last year & my interactions with people who stay in remote areas, having only the very bare minimum, yet having the most wholesome & fulfilling lives has truly changed my perspective towards life in itself.

Life is supposed to be easy with Less, why do we make it so hard with our want of so much more? There is a Ted Talk that is a must watch to everyone that is done with the constant drive for more. .I am leaving a link of the same here.

So keeping with the Minimalist theme of this blog, I am going to start my own year of Less & true ease.

So Lets start over & begin!

First things first .

The rules

  1. Don’t buy stuff!!! ( But of course!)
  2. The Exceptions – The Basic necessities + 1 book per month ( only indulgence )
  3. Make an update about anything new purchased with reasons for the purchase for accountability & transparency sake.
  4. Give away the stuff I don’t need.

Can you think of any more rules? Let me know. I am super excited to start this new adventure & take you guys with me!

Now, what shall I call this journey of mine ???? Any ideas???? Please do leave them in the comments section below!!

I am psyched to be back! What have you been up to, lets order some coffee, shall we?

xoxo Arpita!

The Mind – Body – Soul Balance..

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In an attempt to lead a simpler life, I chose a Minimalist Lifestyle for myself. I cannot even begin to describe that kind of impact it has had on my life. I feel light, happy & sorted.

It was sometime during this process of becoming a Minimalist, that I started thinking along the lines of the Mind – Body – Soul Balance. What was it that I could further do, to live a healthier, more happier & fulfilling life.I spoke to a lot of people. Read a lot of Lifestyle books. I did come across a lot of literature on it. It seems our generation is doing a lot of seeking on these lines. Seeking, because we don’t have it.

I somehow feel, our Grandparents & Parents had a better understanding of this, Body -Mind- Soul Balance than we do . I am sure this was not even something that they had to seek. They just had it & lived by it.

It is not that they worked less harder than we do or had to face lesser challenges in their lives. It is just that they still had a sense of balance in their life, a simplicity in their lifestyle that we seem to lack.

They ate good, organic food. Led simpler lives ( without cellphones, Internet & wifi) Had a strong sense of community & family life. They had Balance in their life. They lived long & healthy happy lives. ( I say that looking at both my grandparents, who lived on for 80 + years & were in great health till they passed away of old age.

I think it is important, we really take a look at both generations & really think about the kind of lives we are leading & the kind of lives we should be leading.

So starting from March, I am going to make some changes in my life & try living in a way that will help me achieve the Body- Mind – Soul  Balance.

Minimalism was a very helpful first step towards it. It is life changing.

Now onto changes at a more personal level. Diet, Exercise & an effort towards a more Holistic Life.

Stay tuned for more!

Cant wait to share this Journey with you.

As always, I would love to hear about your stories towards seeking balance & towards living a better life. Leave them in the comments section!

Love,

Arry.

 

Minimalism – Smart phones

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Our Smart phone has become our most beloved & constant companion in our day to day lives. We spend more time with it, than we do with our families, friends & associates. It is an amazingly useful device for sure, but it is also the greatest distraction of all.

For me personally Minimalism is about allowing only those things in your space that add value to your life.

My Smart Phone certainly was adding value to my life, it served as a phone, Alarm clock, Calculator, iPod, Camera, Shopping Device etc etc etc, but it was also a source of constant distraction. Because of the number of Apps I had on it, every single moment I had to myself, I would spend on my phone. Check Facebook, be tempted by the constant amazing offers on various shopping Apps or replying to the numerous messages I would get on my Watsapp, Wechat, Viber & every other app there is in the world. I would not spend a minute doing nothing!

(It is very very important to have time to yourself where you do absolutely nothing).

So. Once I was done dealing with my clothes, books & almost everything that did not add value to my life, it was time to Minimize the Apps on my SMART PHONE!

I decided to delete Applications that took away most of my time,

Social Networking Apps

I love Facebook, but the App had to go from my smart phone. It took away too much time. Whenever I had nothing to do, I’d take my phone out & scroll through latest updates from Friends. It was happening almost unconsciously, which ain’t good.

I continue to use Facebook, but now, its only from my Laptop or Tablet. Since deleting it from my Smart Phone, my use has come down from once every two hours (from my Phone) to once every two- three days, from my Laptop, Tablet!

Instant Messaging Apps

The Instant Messaging Apps I deleted happily! Watsapp, BBM, Viber so on & so forth ,were actually taking away joy from my life & adding stress instead. The trouble with them is that an immediate answer is expected. The person sending it is even made aware of whether the message has been read or not.

I am a Lawyer, so there are times I cannot get back immediately as use of cellphones in Courtroom isn’t allowed.

A lot of people other than my close friends & family would complain about it. I was perceived as distant & not wanting to connect. That was far from true!

Now that I have deleted these applications, peace has returned! Now the only way to reach me is through phone calls. And I prefer connecting over a phone conversation or ever better, over a cup of coffee, lunch or dinner! It is actually catching up in the real sense instead of mindless everyday messages, sometimes sent to kill time.

Shopping Apps

Amazon is my go to shopping site. As an App on my phone though, it was making me spend too much money on things I did not need. I would just click on the frequent updates on the Latest deals, Great deals most times & shop away! Sometimes I would buy things because I was bored. That is what happens when things are available at the touch of your fingertips.

The App had to go. I am still loyal to Amazon, & almost always buy from them. But now its the things I really need.

Accessing the site from my Laptop. Less frequently.

Needless to say, I save a lot of money these days!

The Apps that you will find on my phone now,

WordPress, Twitter, Instagram & Photography apps. Those that support of my blog.

Blogging adds tremendous value to my life. I use them mindfully. Maximum two- three times a day. I read the amazing things that people write on their blogs & I learn so much from them.

Use the time you spend on Social Networking/Instant Messaging/Shopping Apps mindfully. I use it now to connect with the person sitting next to me Or by looking around & taking in the moment, reading a book, or just closing my eyes & relaxing for a moment.

As I always say, Minimalism is different for each individual.

For me I like my Smart phone now with fewer apps that contribute & add value to my life. You may feel the apps I deleted add value to yours!

Either way works! As long as it adds value to your life.

I’d love to hear your views, as always!

Leave a Comment down below!

Love,

A.

How we became minimalists….

Debbie has been a mentor to me on my Journey towards becoming a Minimalist. She is also an amazing person & I completely adore her! Read on to find out how Debbie & her wonderful husband became Minimalists!

Follow the Tumble Lees!

Cow pasture behind the Bays A view on one of my walks around a campground. Simplicity!

I’m taking Blogging 101, a free course offered by WordPress. It’s really good, but if only we had unlimited data or free wi-fi. That has held us back.  It takes some time to go through the exercises, but eventually, I hope to learn things that will translate into a better blogging experience.

One real huge benefit is to meet and make new “friends” with others who also have a passion sharing their life experiences. One of my new friends, Arpita, a fellow traveler, asked me to write a blog on how to become a minimalist after she read my other blog (click here). Since we are still playing the waiting game, waiting for grandchild # 2 to appear, we needed something to blog about that was related to our lifestyle. You see, this blog is as much…

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Minimalism – Room Tour

Hello Everyone!

As promised, I am going to give you guys a tour of my Minimalist room in my new apartment.

So this is what you see as soon when you enter my room.

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To the left, you have a mirror & on the right you have two other shelves. The one on the bottom, I use to place the books I am currently reading & the top shelf I use as a shrine for the gods.

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My bed , the Ac & a small side table.

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The only painting in my room.

I have always loved this one & wanted to have it in my room. Its a copy of a painting by Vincent Van Gogh named Blossoming Almond Tree.

4

My Cupboard-

It contains everything I own. Literally everything. From clothes, handbags, Make up, Laptop, Documents, Hair Dryer, Iron, Hair Straighteners, all of it. All my worldly possessions in one place. (Except Books)

 

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Night Lamp-

The light above the Mirror turns into my Night lamp. I got rid of my Night Lamp & the table it came with.

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That is all there is to my room. Please leave any suggestions you might have in the comments section down below! I look forward to hearing from you guys!

Love,

A.

 

 

Coffee with Me!

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Hello friends,

Its November already! Just a month & few more days & the New Year will be here already! Somehow the last two months are my favorite time of the year. The action packed months are behind us & its time for reflection.

This time however, the last two months of the year are totally action packed for me. I have moved to a new apartment & am doing my best to settle in . Its still a lot of work & it might be the beginning of December for things to finally fall in place & for the apartment to become become a home.

I have tried my best to arrange my apartment keeping in mind the spirit of Minimalism.

I have managed to let go of more books & have just the right amount of them & freeing a lot of space in the process. Never in a million years would have thought of giving away as many books as I have, in the last month

I will be giving you guys a tour of my Minimalist room in my upcoming Blog post! So Stay tuned!

I am also really really sorry guys, I have not been able to reply to all the wonderful comments you have left on my posts. The reason being, not have a wifi connection set up yet in the new place. The phone net is also not so great because of the location of the apartment.

The new apartment is very close to nature & I have a fabulous view of a beautiful mountains & trees from my window. It has a park attached for walks in the evening & also a track for running. It is almost a forced disconnection from the world of Internet.  Please be patient with me!

On a different note, so many of you guys are taking Nanowrimo challenge! I love reading all your updates on twitter & I am looking forward to reading all of your fabulous work! I wish you the very best with it!

Although, I won’t be blogging as much in the coming week or two, there will be some amazing Guest Posts lined up! So give these fabulous Bloggers your love!

I don’t know how many of you have noticed but there has been a change in the Title of the site, from ‘Arpita’s World’ to ‘It’s Arpita’s Life’! Change is good sometimes 🙂

That’s all from me for now, looking forward to hearing from you guys! Enjoy the last two months of the year, make the most of them & be grateful for all your blessings!

All my love,

A.

Minimalism – Mindful Spending

Today was the day I packed all my belongings here at the old house.Tomorrow, I will be moving my things over to the new apartment.

I am exhausted beyond words!

This experience has made me want to take my Minimalism journey all the more seriously. It baffles me, the amount of stuff I own. Most of it, I have because I can afford to have it, not because I need it.

In spite of the fact that I have given away so much already, so much still remains!

I read an article the other day which said Minimalism was for the rich, the poor do not have a choice, they have very less to begin with. And to be honest, I agree with it. If I did not have the money, I would never own some of the stuff I own.

I think the first thing one needs to do when moving towards wanting to be a minimalist is curbing the urge to spend mindlessly.

My friend Debbie ( check out her blog here ) gave me some really good advice about spending & being a Minimalist. She said, If you have the urge to buy something just because you have the money. Put the money in a jar & watch it grow instead. You can put the same money to some good use later (  which does not include buying useless crap from the mall that you don’t need )

The second advice is, before spending your money on something big, sleep on it for a day or two. Sometimes, we buy things in the spur of the moment & regret it later. The sleeping on it part will save you a lot of money & guilt as well!

These are words I live by now! Thanks Debbie!

Regards,

A.

Minimalism – Clothes

Hi guys,

I finally got down to Minimizing my clothes. It was kinda easier for me to go through my clothes because unlike books, I am not completely obsessed with them.

While sorting the clothes, I would hold each one in my hand & decide whether it fit me well, when was the last time I wore it & does it spark joy. If I had not worn something for the past 6 months, I’d put it in the give away pile.

I really like Marie Kondo’s ‘Kon Marie’ method of folding clothes. In her book ‘Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ she describes the best ways to fold various pieces of clothing right from socks to Tees to trousers, its amazing how much space her method saves you. You can find her folding video’s on Youtube. Just search for Marie Kondo’s folding methods for clothes.

My wardrobe now consists of around 10 T shirts/Tops now, & 2 Jeans, 5 Leggings & 4 Trousers & 4 Shirts. I gave away almost 2 bags of clothes to my maids daughter who has just recently started with her college & will appreciate the fancier clothes so much more than I will.

With Clothes I would say, go for it all at once & not space it out like I suggested with Books. However, if you don’t wish to go through all your clothes at once, just go category wise. One day deal with your Tops, next day your jeans/trousers, your home clothes the third, jackets the next etc. For me personally it took me around 4 hours to go through all my clothes & sort them into throw & keep piles. It all depends on how many clothes you own.

Another golden rule I am applying with clothes is, if I am buying a new piece of clothing, I will give away 3 in return. At no given point should my wardrobe overflow with clothes.

Also another thing I might add, if you want to own a set of stylish yet minimalist clothes. Stick with neutral colors. White, Black, Gray & a Little Blue. everything will go well with everything & you will be a little stress free!

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I am not saying eliminate color from your wardrobe completely, I have not myself, but somehow I have noticed that I take lesser time to decide what to wear & don’t have to buy additional pieces of clothing because something doesn’t match with something. The Ladies will relate to this struggle!

I really like Marie Kondo’s ‘Kon Marie’ method of folding clothes. In her book ‘Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ she describes the best ways to fold various pieces of clothing right from socks to Tees to trousers, its amazing how much space her method saves you. You can find her folding video’s on Youtube. Just search for Marie Kondos folding methods for clothes.

I would like to hear from you, are you a hoarder when it comes to clothes? What techniques do you use to decide which clothes stay & which go? Let me know in the comments section below!

Regards,

Arpita.

If you had to move, what would you take?

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Hi guys,

I honestly think moving house has been a blessing in disguise for me, in my journey to becoming a Minimalist. I have been forced to have a good look at things I own & decide what stays & what goes.

I am trying to get rid of things that don’t bring me joy, than pack them & carry them all the way to my new apartment & clutter the new place.

If you have lived at a place for a long time, ( 14 years in my case ), you will obviously end up accumulating a lot of stuff. So decluttering all of it is not only going to be a lot of work, but also a time consuming affair. However once you are done with it, I can assure you it will be deeply satisfying.

As I go through my stuff & pack my bags, I think it is time to pause & reflect & really ask myself, ‘What is it that I really need’? ‘What is it that I really use’? ‘What is it that I really love’?

As I try & find my answers, I ask you. If you were to move today, what would you take with you? What is it that you really need? What is it that you really love? What is it that you really use?

Let me know in the comments section down below!

Regards,

Arpita