The word minimalism has a negative connotation to many. They believe being a minimalist means you are sacrificing things. It means you are not taking advantage of all that is available in the modern world today.
While that may be the perception some have, if they took the time to learn about what minimalism really is, they may find out it can improve their life.
Being a minimalist is a state of mind, and not a set of rules. It can actually mean you have more of what you need, are able to enjoy everything you have and are not worried about what you don’t have. All of that can help make living life a lot less stressful and can make it more fulfilling.
What is Minimalism?
The image some people have of a minimalist lifestyle is giving up all of the modern conveniences of the world. They imagine living in a cabin in the woods without electricity, a wood burning stove and a bathroom you have to go outside to use.
There may be some people who are living like this, but not everyone who is embracing minimalism has to take it this far. There are other ways minimalism can be utilized that do not require any real sacrifices.
Being a minimalist means you value yourself more than material things. It means making decisions based on what you need instead of getting everything you want. It does not mean the things you buy are cheap. It means they are something you need, regardless of how much they cost.
A person can decide how much of a minimalist lifestyle they want to lead. They can do it in stages as well. Most people begin by going through their home and getting rid of things they no longer need. Over time, they are able to pare their life down to a much more minimalist style.
The Benefits of a Minimalist Life
If you told a person they had to give up everything and only get by with the bare necessities of life they would probably ask why. They would wonder why not take advantage of the inventions and the luxuries that are available.
They will say they have earned the right to live their life the way they want to. They are right about this. What they do not know is living a minimalist life will benefit them in many ways they may not be aware of.
1. Decluttering helps people breathe.
When you start to get rid of things from the drawers, closets and attics, you are going to be opening up more space in your home. There will be more room to move around. More importantly, you will be letting go of things you were holding onto. This will give freedom and will make it easier for you to breathe without the burdens of the past weighing you down.
2. Minimalism allows for refocusing.
When you have a lot of material things, your focus can be all over the place. You worry about working enough to pay for all of the stuff and you spend your time trying to look for or put away all of the stuff in your home. When the stuff is gone and the bills of the home are lessened, it becomes possible to focus time and energy on the important things such as the people around you and the things you are doing.
3. Less stuff equals more money.
As you get rid of stuff and luxuries in the home, other things are opened up. The money spent buying stuff, maintaining stuff and making sure you have the best stuff will end up in the pocket instead of in the store. When you have fewer things you can use your money to pay off debt and that will eventually free up even more money. The dependency on money in a minimalist lifestyle is much lower.
4. You have more time.
When you need less money, you do not have to work as much. That frees up time. You are also not going to spend as much time dealing with all of the extra things in your life. You can focus your time on the things you need and use the extra time that is created on the things you enjoy.
5. You have more energy.
Without all of the clutter, all of the energy that is spent dealing with it will be available for other activities. People without the burden of a materialistic lifestyle are healthier and stronger as a result.
The great thing about minimalism is that it is a choice. People can choose whether they want to live this lifestyle or not. They can choose how far they want to go. There are no right or wrong ways to downsize a life.
Everyone is different. What most people will find is once they begin a journey towards minimalism, the experience will grow and the benefits will get larger and they will want more — and that is one thing a minimalist can want more of.