How to start a minimalist life
In 2014, I come across a blog called zenhabits and it completely change my perspective on owning stuff. From that blog, I get to know what minimalism is all about. And soon after that, I start to experiment some minimalism technique in my life. But as a novice, start a minimalist life is not an easy thing. It takes commitment, high level consciousness (or perhaps you can say, mindfulness), and discipline. And now after 2 years journey on becoming a minimalist, I probably can share you 5 things to start if you want to be a minimalist:
- Start from your eating habit
In my opinion, this is the basic thing people should start if they want to be a minimalist. Stop putting more things on your plate more than what you can actually finish. Because this exactly the basic point of minimalism. Take only what we actually need. And don't bother about the rest.
- Then your toiletries
Simple thing that most of us often hardly notice. We pile up stuffs that we think we will need in the future. Take a look at your toilet. How many teeth brush you have there? Shampoo that you no longer use but you feel too bad to discard? Face care products you buy on discount but never use it again after the first try? I guess it must be plenty.
Minimalism is about keeping the essentials and putting off the others that has less value in your life. In my toiletries basket, I only store stuffs that I use in daily basis. I discipline myself to not put any other bottle if I haven't finish my current bottle (or any other form of container). That way, I can keep my bathroom cleanliness without so much effort.
Oh and for girls, this part is including make up stuffs. Stop buy new stuff if you haven't finish what you have. I always hard on myself in this part. I don't allow myself to buy new lipstick if I haven't finish what I have. But you don't need to be that extreme. Maybe you could set your own limit, and if you need to buy a new one, give away one of your stock pile for other people so you can keep your limit safe.
- And then your wardrobe
This is the tricky part. I myself, still am experimenting on what's the best way to simplify my wardrobe. Many people limit their wardrobe quantity. Some of them also limit the color. But it's really will depend on your own style. Erin boyle, author of Simple matters, said that her goal is to find a way so that she could dress up in less than 5 minutes.
The simplest way? I can say that it must be to limit your wardrobe with only the basic color. However, you can always experiment with another trick because the goal of minimalism is not to make you even more stress to limit your wardrobe. But to create more free space in your house, and in your mind.
- Your room, then your entire house.
I guest you must be have some stuffs from the past that you keep for the sake of the memory. But then again, is it really worth?
If you really intend to apply minimalism in your life, you will need to dedicate a whole day only for this process (well, actually it depends on your current stuffs). You'll need to onload the cupboard you barely open in your typical day. And you will probably discover your old stuff that might sparking nostalgic memory. Then you might be feel sorry when you about to throw away those stuffs. But don't!
My trick? If the stuff no longer serve any value for you but you keep it only for memory, take a picture of it and throw it away or give it for somebody else who might need it more than you. Create a cloud folder and name it "Memories worth keeping" and store your picture of these stuff there. That way, you can get more space yet still keep the memory. (;
- Your decision and activities
In my opinion, this is the highest level of a minimalist. Rather than spend daily time to take care about their hair, they choose to go bald. Rather than spending more time & budget on a big house, they choose to live in a tiny apartment that doesn't require much more effort to take care of.
They also very picky about the activity they will spend their time on. They are those who is totally aware of how precious their time is.
Again, the goal is not to make a perfect life. The goal is to create simplicity that will bring more joy and happiness in your life. So after doing some experiments, always ask yourself. "Are you happy with the way you live now?" If the answer is no, then find other way to simplify that will bring more joy into your life. Be strict but always put happiness on top of your priority. (;