Here’s where we try to answer any questions you may have about minimalism. We’ll also use the page as a blog roll of sorts to highlight other minimalists and their approach to this less is more lifestyle.
Our hope is that by giving you a better understanding of what it’s all about you’ll feel inspired to try it out for yourself.
It’s a work in progress though, so be sure to check back from time to time to see what juicy new nuggets of insight we’ve added.
What About My Books?
The thing about books is that the savouring is in the reading. The story will remain with you long after you’ve turned the last page. So knowing that, what’s the point of hanging onto a book you enjoyed but in all likelihood won’t ever read again? Why not spread the love? Donate your books to your local library or old age home.
If appropriate of course, the biddies might not appreciate 50 Shades of Gray. 😉
We have a three-pronged approach to reading. For those lazy Sunday afternoons on the couch we take books out at library. We buy self-improvement books on our Kindle, because those we invariably revisit. Finally, if we find there’s a new novel we desperately want to read we’ll buy the book and then give it away (we hardly ever do this though, but it’s nice knowing we have the option).
What About the Sentimental Stuff?
Memories reside inside of us, not in the things we own. One of my favourite ways to remember my Mom is to stop whenever I see a bakery. She had a sweet tooth and a fondness for cream cakes and doughnuts. Staring at the display and guessing which ones she’d have chosen always makes me smile.
Do I Have to Sell Everything?
No, absolutely not! Just ditch the stuff that doesn’t add value to your life.
Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful. —William Morris
I’ve Got Kids, Can I Still Be a Minimalist?
There are lots of families out there living this lifestyle. And no, their offspring aren’t dreadlocked and barefoot (not all of them, anyway). Most of these folks live regular lives with jobs and houses and cars , they just don’t buy for buying’s sake. They’re mindful people raising mindful kids.
The Art of Simple by Tsh Oxenreider
Tsh recently returned home after travelling around the world with her husband and three kids (all under age 10) for a year. Her post: 3 questions I ask myself before buying something is an excellent read for recovering shopaholics.
Here we talk about the why behind living simply, because it’s all well and good to want to get rid of your stuff, but if you don’t have your reasons for doing it, there’s a good chance you’ll get discouraged, unmotivated, judge-y, or slightly nuts. We define “simple living” this way: living holistically with your life’s purpose.
Becoming Minimalist by Joshua Becker
Joshua and his family embarked on their minimalist journey after a conversation he had with his neighbour. He and his wife are doing a superb job of raising mindful kids.
Minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it. It requires a conscious decision because it is a countercultural lifestyle that stands against the culture of overconsumption that surrounds us. The world we live in is not friendly to the pursuit of minimalism. Its tendencies and relentless advertising campaigns call us to acquire more, better, faster, and newer. The journey of finding simplicity requires consistent inspiration.
Zen Habits by Leo Babauta
Leo is married with six kids, which is kind of the antithesis of a minimalist lifestyle, but clearly it works for him. His journey along this path kicked off when he quit smoking in 2005. He’s achieved a phenomenal amount since then, making him the poster boy for the “If he can do it, anyone can!” mindset.
These days we have an abundance of luxuries, but I’ve found that excess actually decreases my enjoyment of life. I’ve been finding that simplifying things means I can savor life more fully.
A Good Place to Start
A list of posts that speak to the how of living a simpler life. I’ve included a range of topics here, because it’s not just about owning less stuff.
25 Lessons When You’re Ready for a Simpler Life by Marc Chernoff | Marc & Angel Hack Life
Simplicity is ultimately a product of focusing on what matters. Identify what’s most important to you. Eliminate as much as you possibly can of everything else.
Parenting Spoiled Kids by Julie Suratt
We’re lavishing our kids with unwarranted praise, trying to be their BFFs instead of their parents, and giving them anything they ask for. Where have we gone wrong?
Do Fewer Things, More Often by Allison Stadd
Do less. And do the things that you ARE doing better and with higher quality. Have a shorter to-do list with more things that are in the “done” category.
20 Questions for a Minimalist by Joshua Fields Millburn
The answer to question three is especially helpful for those of you just embarking on this journey. I found the idea of a packing party particularly ingenious.