Minimalism

Minimalism
by

Have you ever wondered how life became so complicated?

We have more internet, more clothes, more cars, more dinners, more television, more news, heaps more social media, more travel and more drugs and alcohol being used.  Have you also noticed the amount of goods that seem to stuff our retail outlets?

It seems there is more, more, more of everything and society seems more and more unhappy.

So, what can we do about this “more” epidemic that seems to be engulfing our society.  More products are being made every day for us to purchase, there’s more pressure at work to perform (or the result can be the loss of your job), much more negative, gory stories on the news (including all the terrorist activity around the world) and there seems to be more social pressure than ever before with the surge in social media popularity.  Most people seem to be so “busy” all the time, and yet their lives seem to be void of peace and happiness.  Overall we seem to expect more from our lives and yet the clock still only gives us 24 hours in a day.  As we see the increase of “more”, we also see levels of stress and depression at an all-time high.24 hours

I have, for some time, been a silent observer of my life and our friend’s lives.  Watching the busyness and “more epidemic” that has been engulfing us, and I’m over it!  It’s time for a change.

As I realized the need for change in my life and that of my husband (Andy) I began to notice on the internet this term “minimalism” and that attracted my attention.

And so the internet has been instrumental in my transition to becoming a minimalist.  I’ve been inspired by this online community, that I didn’t even know existed until last year.  I have found so many people sharing their stories and insights about getting back to basics and living simple, fulfilling lives.  And that has appealed to me!

Minimalism is not some extremist behaviour about owning nothing but a dress and sitting in a room with nothing but walls! It’s about determining what is important in your life and eliminating the rest.  Not complicated at all!

A minimalist lifestyle can pretty much be applied to any area of your life.  Last year Andy and I have started a determined journey to get our lives back and have ruthlessly analyzed what we do, what we own and who we spend our time with.

What we have done:

  • We have done a clothing audit on our wardrobes and they have almost halved.
  • Our household possessions have been ruthlessly scrutinized and we have given away, and sold anything that we deemed excess to our daily functioning. Our clutter free home feels so good!
  • We have reviewed our budget and analyzed where we can curb excess expenditure.
  • We have also looked at any extra activities that we didn’t see as essential and put the broom through that area as well.

We have made all the above decisions based on what is important to us, and your list or process may be different. Let’s open our eyes to see if we need to change.eyelash face

The process of minimizing can be tough and challenging, however it is also very rewarding.  Saying no can be tough at times too, however it allows you to live life on your terms and not be blown around by people and circumstances.

So, where to start in becoming a minimalist? The answer is to start small.  You don’t have to start with a big step. As it is said, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”, so simplifying life doesn’t happen overnight.  For some it can take years, others only a short time.  What matters, is that if we want change we make a start.

 

 

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  1. Taking A Leap Of Faith : May 30, 2016 at 2:23 am

    How did life get so complicated? More often than not it started by you getting a job and then an apartment and then you needing to fill that apartment. And then you started wanting to have more things, more gadgets, more clothes, just more. Most people are busy all the time, they have all this stuff, most of which they never use, and they really aren’t happy. So what is minimalism exactly? it’s not about getting rid of all your things, it’s just about living a more simple, back to the basics life. You don’t have to go to extremes. First off look in your closet and drawers. What do you have that is out of date, or that you haven’t worn for the past year or even two or more? Whatever it is, you don’t need it anymore. If you haven’t worn it in a year or more, you don’t need it, so start bagging it up and give it to goodwill. That way someone who needs it will get use of it. Now what about your other things? Do you have a junk drawer or closet? chances are you do, probably both. What do you have that you haven’t used in the last year? If you haven’t used it, why not? And if you haven’t used it, why do you still need it? Be honest with yourself. All that exercise equipment that you never used, those books that you bought and never read, and what about that camping gear that you got and you never went camping? You just don’t need all that stuff. So if you need to, get rid of it a little bit at a time, but get rid of it. Sometimes it’s hard getting rid of things, because what if we will need it someday? If you don’t need it now and haven’t needed it in the last year get rid of it. If you need it later on you can always buy it again, but chances are, you won’t. Certainly don’t go around buying more stuff now that you’ve gotten rid of things. Be proud that you’ve gotten rid of the clutter in your home. You really didn’t need all that stuff, and you don’t need stuff to replace it. You don’t have to do this all at once, just make a commitment to do it and slowly get the job done.

    • Amen! Thanks for your comments. You’ve addressed so many areas that we can minimize. And as you stated, it doesn’t have to be done all at once. Just a little at a time can achieve so much.

  2. Hi Kym, Great post! My husband and I are constantly going through this process, trying to cull unnecessary items from our lives. We have 3 small children and the one thing we have the most trouble with culling is toys! Our garage is currently full of stuff we are meaning to take to the dump, and your post is making me feel more motivated to pack the trailer and do a load.
    I know that feeling of de-clutter and it feels so good!
    Cheers, Kris

    • Good on you Kris! It is a great feeling to have less around us. Good luck with culling toys, as that can be a challenge. It is so amazing how much less we can live with and be very happy. All the best with de-cluttering. 🙂

  3. Hi Kym,

    Oh my goodness, you hit the nail on the head! You are absolutely right!! What a society we live in that tells us the more we have, the more important we are!

    I love your line of thinking and I am going to seriously look at making some of the changes in my life that you have made in yours. I can see how a person would feel more at peace by doing those things.

    Thanks for a very inspiring article!

    Best wishes,

    Anna

    • Thanks for your comments Anna. We really enjoy the move to minimalism and getting back a more peaceful, happy life. All the best with your move in this direction. It can be done!

  4. I’ve wanted to be a minimalist for a very long time and I’m very excited to read what you have to say about it. I do not own much more than I need, unfortunately, the people that I have lived with, such as family members and roommates, have no interest in minimalism. So, while I like to keep my space clutter-free, I still have to deal with their clutter. Do you have any advice on living as a minimalist, while living with non-minimalists?

    • So glad you are working towards being a minimalist. It could be very challenging living with people who aren’t of the same mindset. If I was living with non-minimalists, I’d try to have my room minimal, so that I could always have somewhere to retreat away from a cluttered area. I know a girl who lives in a home where there are non-minimalists, yet if you enter her bedroom, it’s so refreshingly minimal. I guess that’s her getaway from clutter. Hope that helps!

  5. I’m also a fan of living life as a minimalist. Although I’m not quite there yet, but I think I’m a very minimalist compare to most people.
    Firstable I hate having a lot of clutters or having or buying things that I absolutely don’t need. Most of time I don’t even like people giving me gifts and things that I don’t even need. I don’t own a TV and I don’t own much furnitures either. I wish I can ditch the computer and internet but these are “necessities” at the moment. But I know for sure being free of these can be so much easier on my mind as well.
    Since being a dad to a 6 year old boy I love so much, I can’t be a total minimalist which I fantasize about at times (living out in the woods like Mowgli). But it’s still in the back of my mind, once he’s all grown and out and about, I’m still considering going towards the woods.

    • Hey Joon, thanks for your comments. Good to hear you enjoy minimalism and I agree with you, at present, computers and internet are necessities! All the best with your minimalism journey.

  6. In my case, this type of philosophical approach is particularly useful.

    Being too materialistic in my approach put a lot of stress on me when it comes to my income levels.
    I simply couldn’t afford all of the stuff that I thought I needed.

    Quite frankly, minimalism helped me sort my life out in that sense.

    Cheers, Vlad!

    • Hi Vlad. You are so right about income levels and wanting more. Minimizing our “stuff” is a great way to combat trying to afford everything. I’ve also found that wanting less is a real secret to minimizing also.

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