Minimalism is intentionally living with only the things we absolutely need. Although this concept can be subjective based on the person, it still revolves around the idea that less is more. Minimalism extends beyond the external (such as having less things) and correlates with the internal as well (such as finding meaning and fulfillment).
Embracing minimalism isn’t something that happens overnight, it's an evolving process that develops as you grow. Think about why you want to explore minimalism, this will differ for each individual but some examples are finding time for things you enjoy, controlling your spending habits, or just maintaining a clean and organized home.
Minimalism can be applied into various aspects of your life including your living space, finances, and mindset.
The easiest way to transition into a minimalism is starting with your living space. Start by decluttering your home—remove any items around your house that you don’t use on a regular basis. Some examples are unused furniture, outdated tech, old clothes, and decorations that have lost their appeal. If certain items aren’t used on a daily basis but still have occasional use, place them in storage out of sight.
Simplify your home even further by sticking to plain colors and simple patterns for your home aesthetic, having too many intricate details are distracting and unnecessary. This is why you see many minimalists choose to have a neutral home—the design is still simple yet appealing.
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you’ll realize the amount of unnecessary items you have in your home. This realization becomes the amount of money wasted on purchasing all these items. With this, you can curb your consumption patterns to make more strategic purchases and long term investments rather than smaller, short lived purchases that have limited uses.
The best way to manage your finances is keeping track of your spending. Your bank provides a breakdown of your expenses in your monthly statement, you can group these line items into broader categories (such as: home, groceries / food, personal, entertainment, and miscellaneous). These categories can be broken down even further for more detailed insights. With a glimpse of your monthly expenditures, you can filter out unnecessary spending (such as monthly subscriptions to services you don’t use often) and prioritize which categories you want to spend more or less on.
As you embrace more minimalist values, you will continue to develop your mindset. This will extend into various aspects of your life, such as your relationships, career, and personal development. There’s no right or wrong way to embrace minimalism, it differs from person to person based on their goals and aspirations.
Maintaining a large circle of friends may become less important and having a group of close-knit friends would be more desirable. Having a clear work schedule to focus on key projects would be optimal instead of managing a busy schedule with multiple projects. Rather than seeking material wealth, seeking new experiences and perspectives would help expand our horizons.
Less is More
By intentionally living with only the things we absolutely need, we remove our attachment to materialistic items and unnecessary things in our life. This gives us more time, money, and freedom to focus on more important matters and meaningful pursuits. Start small with decluttering your home and tracking your expenses, this will help you build your minimalist foundations. As mentioned, embracing minimalism is an evolving process that develops as you grow, so enjoy the journey.