Anyone who has kids knows that they require a lot of stuff. Even with tiny babies, new parents are often shocked at the amount of gear, clothes, and other items that seem to be necessary to raise a child. So for people that want to live a minimalist lifestyle in the design and decor of their home, having kids can sometimes be a real challenge.
If this is something you’re currently struggling with, here are three tips for being minimalist when you have kids.
Start Eliminating Things
The first thing you have to do to start living a minimalist lifestyle is to get rid of some of the superfluous stuff that you’ve accumulated, including items for your kids.
To help you with this, Heather Levin, a contributor to Money Crashers, recommends that you start with things around your home that are either broken or that haven’t been used for a while. With just these parameters, you might find that you’re able to get rid of a lot more than you initially thought. Additionally, you might also find that it’s easier to get your kids on board with the idea of getting rid of some of their things by saying you’re only getting rid of the things that are broken or not played with, at this point.
Set Physical Boundaries For Stuff
Once you’ve been able to eliminate some of your belongings, the next step for creating a more minimalist space in your home is to set physical boundaries for certain types of stuff or for certain people’s stuff.
Lisa Armstrong, a contributor to Real Simple, shares that a great way to execute this idea is to get some kind of storage container that your kids can fill up. Whatever doesn’t fit in that container will have to go. This can also teach your kids how to prioritize their belongings and only keep what they really love or need.
Another option could be that your kids can only keep things that fit within a certain space, like along a wall or on a window sill. While you’ll have to find a way to store these items, this can help to pare things down.
Focus On Experiences
As your home gets closer to being in a minimalist state, it can be just as challenging to ensure that it’s able to stay this way as time goes on. Especially around birthdays or holidays, it can be easy for your kids and other family members to accumulate a lot of extras that you don’t really want or need.
To combat this, Sara Langer, a contributor to MotherMag.com, recommends that you try to give your kids experiences rather than toys. By focusing on things they get to do as opposed to things they’ll have, you can teach them great values in addition to keeping your space minimal.
If you’re wanting to live a more minimalist life with your family, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you accomplish this with your kids.