What’s so great about minimalism? My naked table is a perfect example of the benefits.
Bare is beautiful.
You might think a naked table is boring, impersonal, or lifeless. “Those minimalists live in a sterile white box. Ugh!” But that nakedness is temporary. The table gets covered with stuff every day.
But it always starts out naked.
The naked table leaves room for the life that happens in my home every day. It’s always up for anything.
When we’re ready to use it, we don’t have to move flowers, candles, or a centerpiece, or find somewhere to put them out of the way. The table is bare of keys, sunglasses, and neglected piles of mail. It’s empty and ready to be filled with the things and activities we care about.
And when we finish with a project, we put the pieces away, wipe the table, and leave it naked and ready for whatever happens next.
We fill the table with life and activity:
• Writing projects
• and more…
The naked table is like the rest of my minimalist home – clutter-free and ready for real life. I don’t waste much time taking care of things that don’t matter – I spend my time doing and enjoying things that do matter.
Benefits of minimalism include:
1. More ease.
Too much stuff made me feel like I had an endless to-do list. There was always something to take care of, which could make me feel defeated even before I began. But when I simplified, there were fewer things competing for my time and attention. It became easier to do what’s necessary to keep life flowing smoothly.
2. More money.
When I stopped spending money on things I didn’t need, or that I didn’t wind up using, I had more money to spend on my priorities. I don’t mean to imply that all my purchases are perfect. But I’m more intentional about shopping, and I have less waste and more satisfaction than I did before.
3. More clarity.
Less clutter means fewer distractions. Less to keep track of. More opportunity to figure out the important stuff – your goals, values, and what your life is for. (Hint: It’s not for gaining the most stuff.)
4. More resilience.
When we’re overwhelmed and over-committed, there’s no margin for flexibility. It’s harder to adapt to the unexpected, which is a real problem because unexpected things happen all the time. With more space in our homes and on our calendars, we have room to maneuver and make do.
5. More connection.
With fewer chores, I have more time to be with the people I care about. Instead of spending all day cleaning, organizing, or running errands (or just giving in to the chaos), I can tend to what needs to be done in a shorter time, leaving more time and energy for relationships. This helps me place people over things and keep them there.
6. More gratitude.
When we let go of what we don’t need or use, we’re more grateful for what’s left, because those items are valuable and important. I can’t say I cherish my three pairs of jeans, but I certainly take good care of them, because they’re all I have.
With fewer things clamoring for our attention, we can notice and feel grateful for details we might otherwise overlook. This is a great source of happiness.
You know what? Your table can be naked too.
Get rid of things that don’t matter so you have time, room, and energy for things that do. Choose a table in your house and make it naked today.
About the Author: Karen Trefzger is a writer, singer, teacher, wife, mother, and grandmother who has been choosing a simpler life for over 20 years. She is the author of several books about minimalism, and blogs at Maximum Gratitude Minimal Stuff.