Minimalism is about more than just de-cluttering. It is about creating a lifestyle and environment that makes you happy. Minimalism removes the physical excess and trappings that distracts you from what’s important in your life. In that process, it is entirely up to you to determine what is necessary and what is superfluous.
There is no one, right way to live a minimalistic lifestyle. It is individualized to the person and evolves to accommodate and is controlled entirely by you. Extreme minimalists, may own only a very few items and be perfectly content. Others have a broader definition and idea of the essentials that bring joy. In short, a minimalist is mindful and purposeful about what to own, buy, and how to spend to time. The minimalist values experiences and relationships more than possessions – which may mean more money for savings and great experiences, and less time and money spent on maintenance – and being “owned by your possessions.”
Getting there is a process. It requires strength to let go: De-cluttering your life does not happen overnight. While cleaning out your closet does not make you a minimalist, it may be a great place to start. Letting go of possessions is a process that requires commitment and identifying what makes you happy or brings value to your life. Throw out the obvious things and start a pile for a yard sale, list sale items to Internet sites, or donate to local charities. Use any money you make to pay bills or put into an account for a vacation or retirement.
Be smart about what you buy. Think about what you already have and what you NEED. Understand the impact of good marketing – and resist. Save space and maintenance by intentionally seeking out and purchasing versatile, multipurpose items and clothing. Keep in mind that minimalism does not necessarily mean buying only cheap practical stuff or lacking all sense of style! Seek items that are essential and/or those that bring joy and value to your life. In other words – make your possessions “pay” for the right to occupy your space and the time and attention they will require from you!
Minimalists claim the benefits include …
- Uncomplicating life
- Relief from obligations to pursue your passion
- Freedom from being owned by your possessions
- Consuming less results in less impact on the environment
- Discovering more purpose in life
- Actually living and feeling life without a lot of baggage
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