I do not often admit to being a minimalist – even when I proudly advocate non-materialism. It’s because the frequent look of horror on people’s faces at the thought that someone living in the First World in 2018 should willingly live with less that puts me off.
Most people are very skeptical of the ‘less is more’ concept however many times they hear about its benefits. Nonetheless, it is when you peel your life of the inessential that you discover the happiness of living the life you truly want. After all, it is a misconception that minimalism is about stark walls and sleeping on the floor, refusing any material items and contenting yourself with what some would call a mediocre life.
What minimalism really means is living with that which you really want and/or need, as opposed to stuffing your life with everything under the sun ‘just because’ and then waddling through the chaos that is bulging cupboards and exhausting schedules.
Here is a list of ten beginner-friendly reasons to live a simpler and more meaningful life:
1. Buying less items means you can afford to buy better quality ones and still spend less overall.
2. This results in less wastage and less garbage, which in turn is good for the environment.
3. Clearing your wardrobe of the excess means you won’t waste time daily looking through piles of clothing and exclaiming, “I have nothing to wear!” because everything in your wardrobe is well-loved, precious, and gets worn.
4. Buying less ‘stuff’ leaves more money for what you truly love, including experiences that might otherwise be too expensive to afford.
5. That said, you need more time for those experiences, and having less to clean leaves that extra chunk of time you are looking for.
6. Even when it comes to physical items, the less you own, the better care you can take of whatever items you do have, keeping them clean and cared for, serviced and fixed when necessary.
7. Borrowing books versus buying, selling the ones you do buy after reading, and generally cramming less into your ‘to read’ list makes you more likely to re-read favourites and give them prime space on your bookshelves.
8. Having less helps you focus more on the people you love and the hobbies and experiences you do care about.
9. Fewer desires means lesser need for money, so you are suddenly able to choose the job that gives you most satisfaction rather than one that pays most.
10. Minimalism is not just about material things. Freeing time from extra commitments you don’t really want leaves time to concentrate better and longer on the ones you want to keep, therefore living the life you want.