The More Of Minimalism

“Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are.  When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”  ~Lao Tzu

Since becoming an accidental minimalist, I’ve regularly been asked what it’s like to live with less.  My answer… I don’t.  I have more than ever.

There is a common misconception that minimalists live a life of deprivation.  In my experience, nothing could be further from the truth.  A minimalist simply strives to eliminate the unnecessary in life to make room for those things that are truly fulfilling.  For most minimalists, that means less stuff and more happiness.

Since embracing a minimalist lifestyle, I have:

1. More time. I live in a minimalist home that can be cleaned in a fraction of the time it used to take me to clean my big suburban home.  And, I no longer spend hours shopping for stuff to fill that excessive space.

2. More money. By overcoming my desire to accumulate more and more stuff, I saved significant amounts of money and was able to pay off all my debt.

3. More good health. Because it costs less to own my small home than it did my big suburban home, I’m now able to live downtown.  That means less time spent commuting and more time for walking and exercising.  I’ve also adopted a minimalist approach to my diet and practice the art of mindful eating.

4. More peace of mind. Better health, less commuting and less debt has resulted in less stress and more peace of mind.

5. More pride. By living a car-lite lifestyle, accumulating less stuff and embracing collaborative consumption, I have significantly reduced my impact on the environment.  I feel green and that feels good.

6. More room. I live in a small space, but it’s uncluttered and is easy to clean, which makes it feel quite spacious.  And because I live downtown, the beautiful and exciting city in which I live is right outside my door.  I feel as if I have more room to live than ever before.

7. More friends. Instead of watching television, shopping, cleaning and commuting, I spend time connecting with friends and creating fulfilling relationships.

8. More freedom. Living debt free with fewer possessions allows me to be more mobile.  I have no immediate plans to move to an exotic land, but it’s great to know that if I wanted to, I wouldn’t have a houseful of stuff or a pile of bills holding me back.

9. More time with my wife and son. My minimalist lifestyle has allowed me to take time off work and stay home with my newborn son for close to a year, despite a significant reduction in income.  This time I have to spend with my son and my wife is the benefit I am most grateful for.

How has a minimalist lifestyle given you more?

Photo credit:  joiseyshowaa

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3 Comments

  1. More Productive. I can not explain it but I feel comfort too. More productive with less stress. Or stress free. I never feel this before. I thought more productive have more stress consequency. Now I know it’s wrong.

    • It’s an interesting paradox, isn’t it. As counter intuitive as it may seem, it works.

      Congratulations on finding some new space in your life.

  2. That is a really good post. The extra time spent with your wife and child is priceless. Thanks for sharing.

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