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Sep 01, 2019

The Wave of Minimalism

Many people are starting to subscribe to the idea of minimalism. The idea of living with intention and only buying things that you absolutely need. It is very popular especially with millennials because, let’s be real, many of us are too poor to afford to purchase a lot of stuff anyway. Why are people choosing to reject material things, and how can you incorporate it into your own life?

The Core Idea of Minimalism
People who want to practice minimalism are not monks that are only limited to owning a toothbrush and a bed. Minimalism is that idea that you are pursuing freedom through letting go. Whether it’s material possessions, relationships, or careers, it’s the idea that you only use things that you need or pursue paths that bring you joy. Now this is where the idea of minimalism is different for everyone; what brings people joy is subjective. But the common idea is that if you walk into a minimalist’s home, there is little clutter and everything has its place. People pursue minimalism for different reasons: maybe you want to save money, maybe you want to try something new in your life, maybe the reasons are entirely personal.

How to Practice Minimalism
There are many books, youtube videos, and articles you can read that give you step-by-step guides on how to create a minimalistic living space, so I am just going to sum up some of the common thoughts and ideas that they all share:

Declutter
While this is a broad statement, the most obvious place is to start in the home. We have written blogs before about how to organize and clean your home, but there are people whose entire profession is just to organize. Most rooms in a house can be cleaned out, rearranged, dusted and taken care of, especially if you have been living there for a long time. It’s interesting to see how quickly things seem to pile up over time.

Mindfulness
After getting rid of the obvious excess, it can be harder to get rid of things that you feel like have more meaning, or you may feel like you have extra room to buy more things. Practicing minimalism means that whatever ever you purchase has to be thought over carefully to decide if you really need it or not. It’s also to practice mindfulness in all aspects of your life.

Intention
Very similar to mindfulness, your intention with your actions, interactions, purchases, and life decisions should be shifted from doing things that other people tell you to do to doing things that you feel are best for your life. Many minimalists will say that their lifestyle is a rejection of mindless consumerism that seems to have crept into our capitalist society, but is also the acceptance that is in more control of their own life.

Frugal
While the main intention of minimalism is beyond just saving money, it is a common side effect of what happens when you buy fewer things overall. Minimalism isn’t a rejection of all material things, and it encourages people to save money and spend it wisely.

Freedom
It seems that the most common feeling that everyone who practices minimalism experiences is a sense of freedom. Freedom from the stress of always trying to be somewhere or be something they are not. Freedom from relationships that were dragging them down, from jobs they didn’t like, from paying bills for services they didn’t really need.

From the blog of The Minimalist Vegan, she defines minimalism as “Minimalism has traditionally been linked to pure, intentional art and design concepts. But we believe it’s much more than that. We define minimalism as the process of identifying what is essential in your life and eliminating the rest. Less is more”

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