Minimalism is brushed off as a fad by many. Others think it’s too restrictive and rigid a lifestyle to live. And some still have no idea what the hype is all about. Well, we are here today to break it all down to you.
What is Minimalism?
In the simplest words, minimalism is all about living with only those things that are essential to use and eliminating everything else. Removing the unnecessary allows you to focus on what truly matters and gives you freedom from anxiety, over-possession, and even consumer guilt.
It doesn’t mean that there is anything wrong with owning material possessions. The main foundation of minimalism is intentionality. This lifestyle is about having clarity of what exactly you want in your home and your life, and making a conscious effort to just include that. It ensures that you only allow those things that align your values to take up your time and space.
Less is truly more when it comes to minimalism.
What Minimalism Isn’t?
There is no single answer to what minimalism is since it is open to every individual’s unique interpretation. It may be a little easier to understand the concept by probably getting a glimpse of what minimalism isn’t.
While many misconceptions surround this concept, let’s squash a few common ones:
Misconception 1: It’s about getting rid of almost everything
Minimalism isn’t about getting rid of everything you have and keeping just the bare essentials. If you feel you need all the books on your shelves because they add value to your life, keep them. If you feel two pairs of shoes don’t have a place in your life, give them away. It’s just about keeping things are of value and discarding the ones that aren’t.
Misconception 2: Minimalism is the same as being frugal
Minimalism isn’t the same as being frugal. While aspects of both may overlap, they are very different concepts. Minimalism doesn’t promote ‘spend less’ but rather ‘spend on less but important items’.
It’s about spending intentionally and only on those that add value to your life. If those things are expensive but tick all the boxes on a minimalist’s checklist, they go for it.
Misconception 3: There are set rules and standards to follow
If you go online and search how people are living a minimalistic lifestyle, you may come across people following minimalism living with under 100 things at home, under 40 clothes, under 5 pairs of shoes, etc. It may all seem overwhelming but it’s important to remember that there are no set rules to follow minimalism.
Everyone is trying different approaches and figuring out what works for them. For some people, it may be practical and possible to live with under 100 things at home but it may not hold true for everyone. Maybe it aligns with their personal values. But you don’t have to follow it because there are no rules. Do what works best for you!
Misconception 4: Minimalism isn’t possible with families
True, it may be easier to be a minimalist when you are single but there’s no reason why you cannot be a minimalist when you have a family. We’ll repeat again here – minimalism isn’t about having fewer things. So, the reason ‘I can’t follow minimalism because our family is large and we have kids’ doesn’t work.
You can have a house full of meaningful, valuable family things and still be a minimalist. Mind blown yet?
Misconception 5: Minimalism is only applicable to ‘things’
Minimalism is a lifestyle, and therefore, extends beyond materialistic things. The concept can be applied to how you want to spend your time, your eating choices, managing finances, etc.
You can apply it to many areas of your life – all you have to do while implementing is answer one question – how best to use this resource on what’s important to me?
Minimalism – Yay or Nay?
When it comes to adopting this lifestyle, it is important to remember that everyone’s version of minimalism looks different. Choose what suits your life the most. It’s important to remember that it’s just a tool and not the end goal.
You can be a minimalist in just a few areas of your life and that’s just fine. And who knows, you probably are a minimalist in some aspect without even realizing it. Give it a shot but on your own terms!