Today's Minimalist Mentor is Crystal Seay
Crystal Seay took minimalism to the extreme when she and her family of 3 downsized from a family home to a 350 sq ft RV. (and she was expecting baby #2 at the time!)
Moving into an RV gave her perspective to what was important in life and what needed to go. She refused to let stuff hold her back from her dream of living simply and most importantly, debt-free.
Read on to find out what motivated her to keep going even when the de-cluttering process felt like too much.
1. What was life like for you before minimalism?
Before minimalism, our weekends consisted of long days cleaning, laundry and running errands with the hope of having some downtime before the work week started back again.
Our home life was a bit overwhelming and stressful, triggered by opening cabinets to find the missing Tupperware tops or decide which of the 6 spatulas to flip the pancakes with lol.
Needless to say, we had more stuff than we knew what to do with or places to put them! We even had a spare bedroom dedicated to the excess!
2. What turned you onto minimalism? What was the tipping point?
We were already dedicated to the debt-free journey and had purchased a 40-foot RV which forced us to start thinking "what has to go?". My husband and I knew that making memories and spending quality time with our family was most important. And at the time we were wasting our weekend cleaning up stuff we didn't care about.
3. What surprised you as you began decluttering?
4. Did anything get bad or worse as you began decluttering?
Oh ya! My entire house was upside down. Sorting and selling things took a few months. It was a bit overwhelming, but as things left the house the weight and stress began melting away. De-cluttering is addicting too! That freeing feeling is incredible.
The first few things are always hard and scary to let go of. Thinking you might need or miss them can be a mind game, but knowing we had a baby on the way and downsizing to a 350 sq ft RV was a huge motivator!
5. Who helped you along the way? Did you look up to any mentors?
My husband was my number one supporter and I honestly don’t feel I could’ve done it without him. He didn’t question me and instead supported me which made the transition refreshing and fun.
6. What have you gained from minimalism?
Where to begin! We have gained so much! Time is a huge one; energy, family time, peace, less stress, not feeling overwhelmed, loving the home we live in, not being afraid to have friends or family over at any given moment and mental health. There’s a long long list haha!
My favorite thing to do now is watch my kids clean up their own toys because they know where they go! Everything in our house has a “home” and that makes cleaning up 100xs faster and easier.
7. What can someone do today to start minimizing their lives?
In my opinion the first step is to make a commitment. You have to want it! If you don’t commit from the beginning you’ll burn out fast and give up. I believe once you make that change mentally your actions will follow.
I recommend getting rid of things you know right off the bat you don’t want in your home. Nothing you have to sort or dig through. Any boxes laying around, trash or junk, just make a big pile and toss or load in your car to donate. Get rid of those things quickly to create mental space and some momentum.
The method I created and teach is to take everything out that you own.. EVERYTHING! Dresses, shirts, pants, socks, swim suits, etc.
Once everything is out of closet and drawers (if you have clothes in another room this is yours add that too!) and separate them by categories on your bed if you’re able to (use to floor if you have to).
Categories: Shirts, shorts, pants, dresses, rompers, etc. The more specific and detailed the better. Example: Dress tops, work out tops, everyday casual tops.
This method is going to give you a great perspective on how much clothes you own in each category. I also feel categorizing everything and seeing it all in similar piles helps so much!
For example now you can see... “Ok wow 5 jeans and 30 shirts... maybe I need fewer shirts and another pair of jeans”... or whatever you feel you need for your lifestyle.
I teach my clients to ONLY keep what they absolutely LOVE!! If you don’t LOVE it, donate or sell it. If you haven’t worn it in a while and you’re unsure or if it was gifted and you’ve never tried it on... set those items aside in a “maybe pile” and try them on at the very end. That always seals the deal for me and allows me to see how it actually looks, fits and makes me feel! If I’m like eh.. donate — if I LOVE it and smile I keep it!
I always recommend grabbing your MOST LOVED items first so you can easily recognize that feeling of wow I LOVE this! That will greatly help you from getting confused with the other items.
Crystal lives in Florida, is married to her best friend Paul, and together they have 2 little blessing + 1 on the way (and 1 in heaven). She's a stay at home mom, business owner and passionate entrepreneur.