I’m going to paint you a picture of what life could be like if you decided to go just a little more minimal.
Minimalism is something that can sound a little boring or a little unfulfilling for some people – but that normally just means they don’t understand it.
Instead, imagine that you’ve decided to prioritise quality over quantity and that you want to start doing less with more. Instead of yearning after every item you see in magazines or on TV, you have decided exactly what matters to you and you know how much money you need to get it.
For many people, this will mean moving into a smaller home or perhaps even a more affordable area. Perhaps near friends and family in order to cut the costs of travel.
Right away, you can reduce your living costs by $400 to $1K dollars a month between you and a partner. This makes a massive difference to how wealthy you ‘feel’ and it means you can afford to do a job that doesn’t include huge amounts of stress and one that doesn’t involve working incredibly long hours.
It means you won’t struggle with debt, or with missed mortgage repayments. And it means that you can go travelling more!
A lot of people will find the thought of doing less at work hard. This is where they get their sense of fulfilment and progress after all!
Except do you? Why is it that you feel the need to work for someone else to feel like you’re doing well?
Sure, being a manager is exciting and all (is it?) but if the company is just supplying packaging for a cereal company… is this really something that you take such pride in that you’re willing to sacrifice time with your family?
Imagine an alternative scenario where your sense of reward and progress comes from painting, or raising your child, or exploring the world!
Suddenly, you begin to feel much more fulfilled because you have the time and the energy to enjoy life. And this is when you need to learn the most important part of the entire process: learning to appreciate what you have.
Too many of us feel constantly antsy because we need to move on to the next thing to be happy. But what if you could be just as happy with the things you already have? Once you accomplish that, life becomes truly amazing.
Mistakes to Avoid When Trying to Become a Minimalist
You’d think that throwing a few things away and adopting a simpler lifestyle would be easy. How hard can it really be to do less and buy less?
The reality is that this is actually much harder than it looks. We have become so used to being stressed, so used to being jealous and so used to wanting more that it is very hard to let go when we decide to try. Here are five mistakes that people often make and how you can avoid making the very same errors…
Using Technology too Much
Technology is in many ways the antithesis of a minimalist lifestyle. While no one is asking you to turn off your phone permanently, what you should avoid is the kind of ‘mindless browsing’ that leads many of us to end up making purchases of things we don’t need. Take some time off your tech!
Not Finding Fulfilment Elsewhere
If you just remove things from your life, then you’ll find that it can quickly seem quite empty. Instead, you need to find new things to fill your life just as you take things away.
The best way to do this is to think about what makes you happy and how you can get more from what you already own. Keep yourself busy with things that don’t require ‘more’.
Not Keeping it Up
A big mistake is to go all-out creating a minimalist lifestyle and then to give up only a few weeks later. The key here is consistency and introducing a few simple rules can help a great deal. For example, make a rule that you have to get rid of something in your home each time you buy something new!
Being too Strict
A lot of people act as though being minimal is a binary choice. You’re either minimal or you aren’t. And thus the only way to go minimal is to throw everything out and live entirely off the land.
Not so! You can become a ‘little more minimal’ and reap many of the benefits without making it too hard on yourself.
Missing the Point
Many of the issues people have with minimalism come from missing the point. The point isn’t to be mightier-than-thou and it’s not to shun society. The point is just to scale back a little so that life becomes more manageable again! And it is to reap a few of the rewards that just so happen to come as a by-product of that.