Minimalism? Now what the hell does that mean? As I sat during my shift at work I did my usual scan of every interesting website I could get my eyes on. I came across an interesting topic I had not really heard much about. For a good 5 hours I read as many blogs about minimalism as I could and I found that it can be something everyone can apply to their lives. Now before I go ahead, I know some of you may be thinking that this whole concept seems crazy and too difficult to apply. You have probably read that you must only own 100 items, walk everywhere, become a vegan hippie and never do anything that involves money. I will be the first to say that yes that may be an extreme way of looking at minimalism but just like anything in life there are NO RULES on how to do something! Now that we have that out of the way we can start to adjust to the feeling of living with less.
Okay time for the official definition from my favourite minimalist blog the minimalists.com. They sum it up into one simple sentence “Minimalism is a tool used to rid yourself of life’s excess in favor of focusing on what’s important so you can find happiness, fulfillment, and freedom.” The more I thought about the idea that becoming minimalist seems brilliant, I remembered a story I learned in high school about a very rich king who had every material possesion and he loved each one like they were his own children. He wasn’t a very nice man and all he cared about was being rich and owning all these marvelous possessions. As he lay on his death bed there was no one there to say goodbye to him and once he died there was a very valueble lesson to be learned. That lesson was that it doesn’t matter how many possessions you have, once you die they don’t come to the grave with you. When your laying in the cemetery there is no competition for who has the most possessions.
With this all being said does that not excite you that you can finally put that wallet away, relax and be happy! You are no longer bound by the stress spending brings and you no longer have to be in competition with the people you know about who has more stuff. You can walk outside and smell the roses again and smile at that neighbour you were always in competition with and think to yourself “well I finally have it all! I’m happy.” You can walk down the streets while watching people carry their excess shopping bags and feel absolutely free. So if you are ready to free yourself from the obsession that material items bring then follow my easy tips to simplifying your life.
1) Say NO to constant shopping – Okay, I will admit it this will be definitely hard for me especially since having new clothes and looking good is something I value but I am going to make a goal that unless it is something I desperately need then there is no reason to buy it.
2) Declutter your home and work space – This one is huge, most people probably don’t realise how much added stress is put upon them as well as the amount of time wasted when things aren’t clean. Start by going through each room of your house and start throwing away things that you no longer use or no longer need. As well go through that large clothing closet of yours and throw out all those silly items that you don’t even wear. Trust me you don’t need 500 t-shirts, you only wear 4 anyways.
3) Choose 1 day a week to wipe your schedule clean – I think having a schedule for your life is important to some extent because you need to get things done on day to day basis but that being said minimalism is all about finding more time for important things in life and the things that matter. Start small by wiping your schedule once a week and try and do nothing at all. You will have more time to enjoy yourself and spend time with the people that really matter. By doing this you will get to know yourself better and who better to get to know than the one person you spend your whole life with.
Carly Jensen xo
Photo credit: stylizimoblog.com, romanceonadime.com, blog.freepeople.com