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Decluttering Expert on How Minimalism Changed Her Life

Photo: Courtesy of Brittani Travelstead: Take Heart Photography

Decluttering can impact more than physical space. Sometimes, the action can make more space in your mind — and help you live the life you’ve always wanted.

That was true for Amy Mayorga, founder of Minimalista Mom, a decluttering service aiming to transform its clients’ relationship with physical stuff.

Starting to declutter 

Mayorga, who lives in Irving, Texas, became a minimalist convert when she noticed her children’s things piling up in their home. She read Marie Kondo’s book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up,” and began decluttering, and then recycling, donating, selling, and organizing belongings her family no longer needed.

“This minimalizing of our possessions gave me a sense of control in the chaos of being a parent to two young children,” Mayorga says. “I felt an energetic buzzing inside myself. The more I decluttered, the happier I felt. I felt as if I was coming back to myself, to whom I wanted to be.”

Simplicity

An environmental responsibility and a wish for her children not to equate physical items with happiness also motivated her. “Through the process I was confronted with my own consumerism, and it was very eye-opening and, honestly, I was shocked by how much I had accumulated over the years,” she says. “This confrontation with all of my past decisions sparked a real change in me. I was now dedicated to finding simplicity and calm.”

As a result of her new philosophy, Mayorga spends less time shopping for unnecessary things, less time returning items she no longer wants, and even less time cleaning and organizing her home. Her children share one dresser, and they keep a “donate” box in their garage, which they take to their local thrift store monthly. Even her children have fewer toys, and they frequent the library to check out, rather than buy, books to read together.

Lifestyle changes

“I now am a lot less concerned with what I ‘should’ be doing, buying, or having,” she says. “Adopting a more minimalist lifestyle has made me more cognizant of the waste that we produce and of the state of the planet.” Doing research and hiring a professional to help you declutter by category can help you pave a path to minimalism, says Mayorga, adding that eventually, this way of life becomes second nature, and the urge to buy more things to fill up your space tends to fade. “It truly is a lifestyle change,” she said. “It, for me, is not about deprivation, but rather owning what you value or find useful so that you have more time and energy to focus on other areas of your life that matter more to you.”

Melinda Carstensen, [email protected]

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