If you’ve already packed your house to move to a new place, you’ve probably achieved something you don’t always like to admit: you’ve way too much stuff. In fact, one in four people in the United States has a problem with space! With so many items weighing on us in our daily lives, it is not surprising that one of the biggest trends in interior design today is not just a design style, but a lifestyle change. complete – a growing movement called minimalism or minimalist life.
Although the lifestyle has gained popularity in recent years thanks to Marie Kondo’s KonMari method and the rise of small houses, “minimalism” is nothing new – it actually has its roots in Buddhism and was first invented in the mid-1960s by a British art theorist, according to Kyle Chayka, author of The desire for less: living with minimalism. From there, minimalism has become a way of life that emphasizes living with less – and therefore enjoying more. If you’re wondering how to integrate it into your own home, here’s all you need to know about minimalist living.
- 1 What is minimalist life?
- 2 Benefits of a minimalist life:
- 3 Tips for a minimalist life:
What is minimalist life?
Although minimalism can be defined in many different ways, there is generally a unifying theme common to the movement: a philosophy of living simply or living with less. “Minimalism is the intentionally promoting the things we value most in life by removing anything that distracts us“says Joshua Becker, the author of the Becoming Minimalist blog and author of The Minimalist Home: A Room-by-Room Guide to a Decluttered, Refocused Life.
Minimalism can be applied to many areas of our lives – our schedules, our relationships, etc. – but a central part of minimalist life is often home. When thinking about the appearance of a minimalist house, you might first think of white, open spaces and bare walls – but the truth is that everyone can practice minimalism differently, says Becker. “A minimalist house is very intentional,” he explains. “Each possession is there for a reason.” As such, minimalist living usually involves cluttering, organizing and “minimizing” your home – all in order to lead a simpler and more focused lifestyle.
Benefits of a minimalist life:
If you’re wondering why you should start adopting minimalism in your own home, here are some of the best benefits of a minimal life:
- More money. According to Becker, fewer items in your home mean more money because you will buy less and you will take less. Plus, you will realize that your money can be used for better things than just buying goods – including more experiences and quality family time!
- More time. If you living with fewer items in your home, you will spend less time cleaning and organizing (and shopping), allowing you to have more time available in your day to focus on what matters most to you .
- Improved well-being. A minimalist house is much less stressful. “Having fewer things means we have less stress in life,” says Becker. “Every increased possession adds increased anxiety to our lives, because everything we own must be taken care of – must be managed.”
- Good for the environment. By buying less and using less, you will also reduce your consumption of the planet’s natural resources – so do your part to help the environment!
- More gratitude and attention. Living with less will allow you to find more gratitude in what you have. “In a physical space, minimalism allows you to appreciate certain things in a deeper way than to have many cluttered things,” says Chayka. “It has a lot in common with mindfulness in that it encourages you to consider what you include or do not include in your life.”
Tips for a minimalist life:
If you’re ready to reap all of the great benefits of this simple, purposeful lifestyle, here’s how to create a minimalist home and start living more minimally:
1. Focus on one room at a time.
Often the hardest part of minimizing your home is knowing where to start. One thing that is clear, however, is that it is overwhelming to try to tackle an entire house at once – that’s why you have to focus on one room at a time. First, direct your time and energy into the easiest room – then use it as inspiration for others while roaming the rest of your house. (And if you’re having trouble finding the best plan for your home, Becker recommends its Clutter Free app, which can help you by creating a personalized, step-by-step roadmap for decluttering.)
2. Start with the visible areas first.
Once you’ve chosen a room to focus on, a good approach is to start with the visible areas first – so that things like shelves, furniture, and things on the floor – before moving on to the hidden areas of the room, like organizing your drawers, cupboards and closet. That way, you can actually see your progress as you go, says Becker, which can help you a lot when you feel overwhelmed by the amount of items you have to browse.
3. Declutter by keeping only the essentials.
When it’s time to start decluttering, a good rule of thumb is to keep only the things that are really essential – and meaningful – to you. Advises Becker: “Go through your house, from the easiest to the most difficult, by touching each element and deciding:” Is it something that adds value to my life? Is it something that helps me create the house I want? Or is it really distracting from that? ‘”
If you’re still having trouble deciding to keep or throw something, Becker recommends four specific questions to ask yourself about the particular item:
- Do I need it?
- Do i use it?
- What should I use if I didn’t have it?
- Why do I have it?
4. Limit your decorations to significant objects.
When it comes to interior design, it’s easy to want to decorate your home with various beautiful items that you have offered for sale or spotted in your local home goods store – but if you want to engage in a minimalist home, there it’s best to limit your decorations to those that have special value or meaning, says Becker. “The problem is that over the years, people tend to collect decorations that have no special meaning for them,” he says.
As a result, Becker encourages people to have fewer decorations by keeping only the ones that are most meaningful to them – like family photos and special family items – that can tell your story better to your family and others. all visitors to your home. “When we have fewer decorations, we pay more attention and value to the ones that matter most to us,” he says.
5. Store regularly.
It is one thing to effectively transform your home into a minimalist home – but it’s another to keep it for good! Your house is a space that is permanently inhabited, so it is inevitable that things will start to get messy after a while; that’s why it’s important to have good cleaning habits in the future, says Becker. “It’s about tidying up the spaces you have and knowing that some spaces require daily attention, some spaces require weekly attention, and some spaces require seasonal attention,” he says.
6. Resist the temptation to buy more.
It can be particularly difficult to buy fewer things in the age of constant and ubiquitous advertising – that’s why Becker advises to opt out of ads as much as possible, it means unsubscribing from emails, watching less TV or discard the spam. It can also mean rejecting materialism to focus more on the things that are truly meaningful to you. “Think about what you really like, compared to what materialism or publicity made you like,” advises Chayka. “Determine what your taste is and what makes you happy in your space.”
7. Find your goal.
This is one of the most important parts of minimalist life: if you plan to start living more minimally in your home, take the time to think about Why you do it – whether it is because you want to save more money, because you want to spend more time with your family, or even because you want to take early retirement and enjoy your retirement years. This is particularly important because, ultimately, minimalist life is about leading a more intentional goal life. “The goal of minimalism is not just to own fewer things, but to live a more meaningful life than the one I live,” says Becker.
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