Minimalism can be considered as the conscious search for what brings joy to our life and the voluntary elimination of everything else. Let’s discover more about it.
While we are going to delve into the concept and definition of minimalism in a future article, that will be part of the STOR-EY “Glossary”, we have collected some tips and ideas on how to let go of things that do not add value to our lives and create more space for us.
The key principles of minimalism can be summarized to the following three points:
- Focus on what is essential;
- Removal of the superfluous;
- Search for maximum enjoyment.
Do the points above remind you of something familiar? Maybe what we discussed in the Marie Kondo and slow fashion articles? With this regard, you can find below 10 useful tips and principles to bring more minimalism and conscious consumerism into your everyday life.
1. Focus on the why
Intentionally living is essentially reconnecting to our why. Wondering “why” we do something, “why” we buy something and “why” we live in some way, is the only way to discern between what is aligned with our life and what is not. Whenever you are called to make a decision, whenever you are going to buy something, try asking yourself why?
2. One thing at a time
More than a rule to be minimalist, this principle of productivity is great for any occasion and essential for those who want to live a minimalist life. When we are totally focused on one thing, one only thing, we find it less difficult to eliminate distractions and the superfluous.
3. Take it easy
In minimalism, the focus is on quality rather than on quantity. It is not important to do everything in life but to do well what we do. Otherwise, we would find ourselves doing a lot of things done in a bad way, with the unique result of not having done anything for real. If everything matters, nothing is really important. In addition, the thing that really matters is progress – progress towards achieving your goals. Celebrating the little improvements is the only way to recognize that we are moving towards success.
4. Take a look at yourself
There will always be someone with a better car, the latest tech model, the most expensive dress. So? This doesn’t mean that he/she is happy. As researcher Shawn Achor has discovered by studying the relationship between happiness and success, there are happy people even in conditions that we would consider rather dramatic. If we look at what remains after we have removed what does not give us joy and a reason to be there, we remain alone with what gives us pleasure and that is part of ourselves.
5. Quality not quantity
Being minimalist does not mean eliminating everything we have, but keeping only what really gives us pleasure and joy. The best rule to follow for a proper minimalist life is to focus on quality. It is true that high-quality things are more expensive, but it’s not true that we cannot afford them. A pair of 80 euro trousers, net of the brand, should be better than a trouser for 20 euro (remember to check the label). To afford it we have to give up three extra pairs of trousers: but isn’t it better to give up those three? Two of which we would most probably wear just once, and take the best one directly? The best trouser, moreover, will probably last longer in time and will allow us to save in the long run anyway.
6. It costs more to keep things than to give them away
Do the maths: every object in your life costs you time and energy, two of the most important limited resources that we have. As well as money to take care of them. Eliminating what is not adding value to our lives is the only way to “find” time and energy that we can dedicate to what really matters to us.
7. Declutter all areas
Look at every space, physical, mental, and digital, as an opportunity to remove something superfluous to create a new order. This is the best attitude to bring minimalism into one’s life and fully enjoy its benefits. Have you already read our perspective on Marie Kondo’s method to declutter?
8. Simplify your wardrobe
We have discussed this point with our dear friend Bianca from Stilfrage and you may read more about that sustainability starts in your closet.
Another interesting approach is the Project 333 based on the idea of Courtney Carver, author of the blog “Be more with less”. It is basically a challenge that consists of dressing for 3 months with no more than 33 items of clothing.
But let’s see the rules of the challenge specifically:
- The 33 items of clothing include clothes, accessories (belts, etc.), jewellery, jackets, and shoes;
- The wedding rings and other jewels with which we have an emotional bond, underwear and gym clothes should not be counted on the list of 33 items;
- Once the 33 garments to be worn in the following 3 months have been chosen, all the other clothing items must be “sealed” in a box;
- If one of the chosen garments is ruined or no longer fits well, it can be replaced.
All clear? Let us know in the comments if you will undertake project 333.
9. Be thankful for what you have
Gratitude is not only a consequence of minimalism but also a way of getting there. Keeping a diary of gratitude helps us to dedicate time every day to the pleasant moments we have lived, and to find something worth living for. In the long run, this helps us to cultivate the experiences that make our life more pleasant and to buy only those things worth spending our money. Learning to disinterest in what we don’t have and to be happy for what is in our power.
10. And now, make this list better!
As in every situation, one must learn and practice to become an expert on a topic. Write to us via DM or in the comments below which is the 10th rule that you would add to this list.
Until next week!