Reduce the noise.

Things worth spending on.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

I happened to watch the documentary on Minimalism a few weeks ago. People are usually polarized on this topic. Some are fascinated by this concept of minimalistic living while others can’t seem to fathom not having a house filled with things they hardly ever use or a wardrobe that’s literally overflowing. My sister, for example, wouldn’t be able to decide which one of her 300 tops that she has lying around she could give up, even though she wears only a handful of them on a regular basis. And I understand, cos I can be a hoarder too in some aspects. There’s a sort of comfort in knowing you have something if in case you need it, rather than not having it in the first place. It’s the survivalist mindset in us except applied to the most trivial and ridiculous things in life like fashion. What the documentary made me realize is that I was a proponent of minimalism even before I knew that such a thing ever existed.

Joshua and Ryan who have written several books on Minimalism define minimalism as:

Minimalism is a lifestyle that helps people question what things add value to their lives.
By clearing the clutter from life’s path, we can all make room for the most important aspects of life: health, relationships, passion, growth, and contribution.

I love it. I live it. And I wish I could convince my materialistic, buy more, spend more, bigger the car the better, have a big house, have hundreds of expensive watches and clothes, work to buy things, brand-driven friends and family to convert to this lifestyle.

What minimalism means to me:

Minimalism essentially comes down to one main fundamental core idea, and that is to reduce the noise around you. Just look around you, from the billboards, to the commercials, to Facebook and Instagram ads. All designed to guilt you into buying things you don’t need. Make you feel less than in some ways. To convince you that the solution to fixing your miserable life is to buy that new watch. And we suckers fall for it cos we are driven by external stimulus and validation.

The best I’ve heard on this topic:

I have talked about this particular podcast from Joe Rogan a bunch of times now (Read here). But who better to tell a story than one of the greatest story teller of our generation, Guy Ritchie.

Here’s the key take away:

There needs to be some time in your day where you remember that there’s a world out there trying to tell you who you are, and a world in here trying to tell you who you are, now where do you want to put your eggs?
The world outside is very noisy and very tempting. It has all the razzmatazz and it’s got all the tits and all the glitter, it’s got all the toys, but that’s because you don’t think you are enough in the first place……..
You need to take away all your crutches, and that’s all we suffer from in this world, like give me some more money so people think im clever, let me buy this so people think i’m clever. You need to take away all these crutches and stand as the man that you are and you are liberated from everything.

How does this tie in with Minimalism:

Take away your crutches. Stop trying to impress people on metrics that matter to them and not you. The only things you should be concerned about are the metrics that matter to you. You don’t need to build a big house to impress your friends and family if all you truly care about is visiting new places and having new experiences. Find your passions, your hobbies, your interests. Things that matter to you and makes you happy and on those things be a maximalist. For everything else be a ruthless minimalist.