9 Things I Got Rid Of That Made Me Really Happy

Samurai Matcha
by Samurai Matcha

If you need advice on things to get rid of, I can help. I'm a minimalist who is a school teacher in a small village in Japan, and I've gotten rid of many things in the process of becoming a minimalist. I will introduce nine things that made me feel better after letting them go.

Getting LASIK surgery

1. Contact lenses and glasses

I used to love video games. I played Pokemon, Smash Bros, and Mario Kart a lot. Around the 6th grade, my eyesight worsened, and I started wearing glasses and contacts. 

However, I decided to have LASIK eye surgery before traveling the world on my bamboo bike. I thought it'd be great to stop paying for contacts every month and get rid of the hassle of putting them in every morning.

I also wanted to reduce the number of things and lighten the belongings I had with me as much as possible, so I decided to have LASIK. 

When I woke up the following day, I could see everything. As a result, my vision became 20/20. I didn't need to buy contacts every month anymore. I didn't even need glasses. Thinking about that made me so happy. It said that LASIK has some side effects, but I've never felt any.

Using a tatami floor mat instead of a yoga mat

2. Yoga mat 

I usually use a yoga mat for stretching and working out. However, around August this year, I thought I didn't need a yoga mat. The reason was that I thought that the tatami floor mat was more convenient to use than the yoga mat.

Many yoga mats don't have enough cushioning. Mine, for example, hurt my knee. However, tatami mats are softer than many types of yoga mats, so it can be more comfortable to do stretches on. 

Of course, yoga mats have the advantage of being less slippery, but I thought tatami mats were efficient for my lifestyle. So I gave that up. 

Getting rid of phone apps

3. Phone apps

There are many temptations on our smartphones, such as Instagram, Facebook, TikTok, and YouTube. You can find yourself scrolling through an app, which turns into multiple hours before you know it.

One day, I was wondering how much time I was on my phone and looked it up. I was shocked to find out that I was on my phone for an average of 3 hours a day. Now I'm practicing digital minimalism; I only kept the apps I needed and deleted most of the rest. 

Folding mattress bed

4. Bed

I don't have a regular bed. The reason is that not only does a bed take up a lot of space in a room, but it's also a hassle to move around. So I use a folding mattress instead.

This type of mattress doesn't take up much space; plus, it's easy to put away, so you'll be able to take advantage of the space. Even when you move, you can easily carry the mattress. 

Tenugui bath towel

5. Bath towel

Bath towels take up space and are bulky. I usually use tenuguis or my favorite brand, Moku, as a towel. A tenugui is a traditional Japanese towel, and a Moku towel is a combined fabric of a towel and tenugui.

They are compact, so this is enough space for them here. Also, you can wipe down and dry your body without any problem. Moreover, it's very convenient when you're traveling. 

Saving money on shampoo

6. Shampoo

It's been three years since I stopped using shampoo. The first reason I gave up shampoo was that I thought shampoo was a heavy item to carry.

When I traveled on the bamboo bike, I didn't use it. Then I thought it was no problem to go without it and I saved a lot of money by not buying it.

When my hair was long, it felt a little oily after washing it with only water. Other than that, it was perfectly fine. 

Drinking spring water

7. Water

I'm not saying that I stopped drinking water. I stopped buying bottles of water. I used to drink bottles of water every day, but I realized it's so expensive.

It said that people drink about two liters of water a day. A two-liter plastic bottle costs about 0.76 cents. It will cost you about $300 a year. 

Nowadays, I have started drinking spring water. Once every two weeks, I get water from the spring with my friends. We fill glass bottles that we're reusing. It's fresh and delicious. This is one of the great benefits of living in the countryside in Japan. I appreciate it. 

Getting rid of a TV

8. TV

I got rid of the TV when I was in university. The first reason was that I didn't want to watch Japanese news. The news in Japan is negative. For example, how many people died in a car accident, a celebrity apologizing for cheating, or corruption of politicians. 

Having no TV gave me a lot more meaningful time and space in the room. During that time, I was watching things on my computer. Nowadays, most TV programs can be watched through the Internet, so for the few things I want to watch, a computer is enough for me. 

Magnesium bags instead of laundry detergent

9. Laundry detergent

I don't use laundry detergent because I found a better way to wash laundry.

The detergent you use depends on the person, but I calculated that I spent about $80 a year on laundry detergent. It's not that expensive, but I wanted to save some money. I found a way of using magnesium in my laundry routine. 

When you put magnesium into the water, it makes the water alkaline and removes dirt. It helps you save money, reduces the laundry process of adding detergent, and is eco-friendly. Even though it's not as strong as some other detergents, I think it's enough for me. 

I've been washing my clothes this way for about three years with no problems.

Things to get rid of 

I talked about nine things I let go of that helped me become happier. What do you plan on letting go of? Share in the comments below!

Join the conversation
2 of 7 comments
  • Hawkeye12 Hawkeye12 on Jan 20, 2023

    How and what type of Magnesium for laundry?

  • Karen Coyne Karen Coyne on Dec 30, 2023

    What I appreciate about your article is that you are saying what makes you happy, and not telling everyone else that they should get rid of these things too, as do most of the minimalist articles. Some of these things might work for most people, and some are more unique to your lifestyle. Thank you for an interesting article.