Ever thought that there could be a way of living life in such a way that it would minimize all the hardships we face, which are created by ourselves. Minimalism is one such way. Minimalism is a way of living your life efficiently by not having unnecessary spaces and materialistic things around yourself. This way if life is like living with the only supplies that suffice your requirements and not consume too much energy around you. Imagine having to live with not much interference in your life via any medium, vision, sound or material. That simple ascetic lifestyle is where the torch of minimalism leads us to.
Luxury today is the “sin” we choose that ruins the simple views for us, yet whenever we come across nature and its simplicity we feel blissful. This happens to us because we humans are simple, and we have created a complicated nest for us, not to ease anything but to exhibit our flamboyance. Isn’t it true? The famous riches in the world address everyone to observe a life that is minimal and not all show-business. Why? Let’s get to know more.
What is minimalism?
Minimalism is driven by 3 things, Clarity, Purpose, and Intentionality. Intentionality at its core, it is a life that teaches us to live with things we most value and removing everything that distracts us from it. Minimalism is an approach to life where the elimination of extra choices takes place to clear your head of the unwanted images, sounds, things, thoughts etc. Minimalism widely now applies to only possessing material things, but it has a concept broader than that. As I said, it is a way of life and limiting your choices to only a few enables your head to think straight.
Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelming. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.
Source: The minimalists
The concept of Minimalism originated In visual arts, music, and other mediums, post–World War II Western art, most strongly with American visual arts in the 1960s and early 1970s. The idea was to create lossless visual objects when it originated in various art forms. Minimalist music comprises of often repetitions and gradual change like works of La Monte Young, Terry Riley. But really if seen, it is all about investing once in something and not cluttering.
We often find ourselves stocking up on things we like and most of them happen to deliver no productive work whatsoever. Like collecting on a lot of coffee mugs, is a waste of money because we need only a few. This clustering is what is left behind when you lead a minimalistic lifestyle.
The need for some decluttering in one’s life is essential today. We come across so many choices in today’s world that we end up buying more than one item, mostly because it is aesthetically pleasing. This often happens with women, as we are vivid shoppers. Browsing through stuff for hours is what gets us to hoard on things more than men. Men anyway lead a minimalistic life, because they have limited choices. But not all men, men are found to hoard more accessories than women do, again because they have limited choices. You can see men with 20 pairs of shoes and women with more than 50 brushes and make-up palettes. Most of these items irrespective of the gender ends up not being used or used rarely.
The entire credit for this situation goes to marketing strategies today. Companies know what people like and they bend their products marketing towards that, the result? We become hoarders.
This is where the need for such an ascetic lifestyle comes in. To avoid such cluttering in our lives, we must make choices to limit our needs for buying one product once only. This is an investment. Imagine having 20 cars, yes fancy!, But now imagine fueling them, maintaining them. Too much energy and resources spent right? And if you had just one car, you would be constantly using it, so maintaining it once in a while will be something that will be on your tabs. You can never forget about it because you have just ONE personal transport.
The amount of energy that goes into organising multiple things, is priceless. So why hoard? Isn’t your energy the only thing you should be saving?
This path means less financial burden, fewer debts and more freedom. But is giving up on things that easy?
Is it easy?
No, It’s not. Possessing something for a long time makes it hard to throw it out of lives, but minimalism isn’t about throwing all your stuff away. No there are no restrictions and you can slowly develop the habit of this lifestyle. Just discard the excess. Throw a few things that might not be working/ expired stuff. Once you start the process, it gets easier ahead. You will find yourself thinking harder for the next purchase, based on if you need it or it is just pleasing to your eyes.
Start with your least favourite things, de-cluttering is a meditation. You will feel so much lighter and lifted. Remember the freer space, the more positive energy you get from your system and environment. White space in your home will make you feel lighter and happy. Isn’t that a good enough reason to start already?
Benefits of minimalism
There are multiple benefits of this lifestyle, but here we will talk primarily about materialistic freedom and independence.
- Financial relief
- De-cluttering adds value to self
- Collect memories not souvenirs
- Go Eco friendly
You know you don’t need half of the stuff you have, but you keep it anyway because either you are lazy to clean up, or it adds some kind of nostalgic feel. But then again, things break, lose or get stolen but memories remain. And the ones you can’t remember, well, weren’t memorable enough.
What to throw?
Throw the dupes. Throw anything that is not of good quality, doesn’t make you feel right or in general, is worthless. Keep the originals, expensive and things that you think is an investment.
But where to throw from?
Your closet has several things that you probably never wear. It’s time to clean your closet and keep apparels that are wearable, comfortable and makes you feel confident. You don’t need 5 different kinds of belts. You don’t need to have a matching scarf for every skirt. And you certainly don’t need those bright purple/ sheer stilettos. And men you don’t need different types of belts and shoes either. Keep it simple. One for work. One for casual. There, sorted.
Yes, you don’t need 15 different mugs for coffee. You don’t need to have 3 types of China dishes and you certainly don’t need those fancy silver spoons too. If you want to keep some good and durable items keep one spare of each kind, and to be honest silverwares or steel cutlery and appliances are the best. They don’t shatter and break your heart. And don’t burn a hole in your pocket.
Yes, girls I know looking good is important but you don’t wear purple and green shades every day to work do you? Make-up palettes cost a lot, and most of those palettes are for runway models. Not someone who has to work every day. People who make a living out of makeup like makeup artists and fashion designers need those to portray their art enhancing it more. But you, my friend, don’t have to wear green eyeshadow and a bright red lip to work. (Unless you want to look like a Christmas tree). Skincare and other self-care products should be limited in one’s cupboard to avoid too much stage of time and money. Well, both are same though. So if your skin gleams in minimal effort why to throw all that effort and currency down the drain?
What does minimalistic life hold for us?
Solace. Yes, minimalism holds solace for you. All the white space in your life that ain’t visible because of all the chaos might be finally accessible you when you urge yourself to a minimalistic approach to life. All it will do is give you a sense of freedom, peace and the calmness for which you have been travelling from one place to other in your minds, habits etc. It is truly like relishing your Zen and utilizing it for something that has a greater purpose in your life. Like your goal, long term or short term.
Now living with less doesn’t mean that you have to limit yourself. I say when you decide to go minimal start investing in everything you are buying henceforth, from a nail-chipper to a car or even house. Living efficiently is all about mindfulness. When we start living and considering things at the core principles of minimalism, we view everything as “What value will it add to my current self?“. Its is the intentionality of these things that will differentiate things from distractions.
It is a life that forces intentionality on us, and while this looks different from person to person, the core of this aspect remains the same. It requires us to give a deeper thought, to become more introspective about values and passion. It is a freedom from the modern mania that drives all of us to stores and makes us hoard on things to keep up with the trends. But guess what? Minimalism is never out of trend.
Modern life has bought us into the lie that, accumulating things leads a good life, like collecting souvenirs.
When you buy into the idea of categorizing things into value, purpose and intention, you are not far away from this life. Imagine the feeling of solace bestowed upon us from within? Crazy right? By now I think you must have been convinced about this approach, now let’s start to achieve it.
Is it achievable?
Yes, it is achievable, and you don’t have to turn your life upside down to do that. Some people think that minimal life is boring, but it is opposite of boring. once you have removed all the mundane activities from your life, it becomes easier to focus on what will make a difference in your life. living a minimalistic life frees us to live a bigger life, whether it is to give time to your family, career or yourself in the pursuit of a happier and fulfilled life.you don’t need any extra things to get started. you just need the will power to do so, because freedom from the passion of possession is the greatest battle in this way. it steps you off from the treadmill of consumerism and dares you to focus on seeking happiness from within.
That’s all the great trendsetting lifestyle has to offer you. Peace. Ain’t it the only thing we should all be chasing? But why chase it when you can generate it from within. Give minimal Lifestyle a try and you will feel lifted and clear about your purpose in life. Until next time folks, Remember
Seek value, purpose and Intentioanlity