How to start a minimalistic lifestyle.

Creative Goods
Iga von Geyso
Published in
4 min readMay 18, 2022

Let’s start with a WHY. Why I am drawn to a minimalistic lifestyle and why the heck I am writing about it. The answer is pretty simple: it makes me happy and I believe we all deserve to feel this way. Sometimes we‘re just missing the recipe for a happy life and maybe minimalism can help you find it.

I‘m aware that happiness can come in different forms and it varies from person to person. However, when I listen to my friends or read articles about 21st-century difficulties, I see that many people have one common struggle. It’s a constant chase after having better, bigger, and more expensive or being prettier, skinnier, and more successful. We scroll through social media and we see the lives of a few that undermine ours. THEY look better, THEY have bigger houses, THEY have more expensive cars. Funny thing is that in most cases we don’t even know who THEY really are. We just see a scrap from their lives and we assume that it’s better than ours. But is it? Are THEY really that happy? I hope so, but we don’t know that so we shouldn’t copy what THEY do in order to find our happiness. Focus on “YOU” instead of “THEM”.

If I made you a little more interested in pursuing minimalistic AND HAPPIER life, keep reading to find out 5 tips that help you start.

1. Appreciate what you’ve accomplished.

Look at your life from a perspective and you might notice you’re taking your accomplishments for granted. Acknowledge what you went through to get to this point and be proud of it. As you’ll read again below, life is unpredictable and sometimes it’s a CRAZY rollercoaster. The fact that you are where you are is a success!

Studies show that people who are grateful are more satisfied with their relationships with friends and family. They’re happier, less depressed, and less stressed.

2. Find out what you want from life.

Be honest: do you really know what you want? Do you see your perfect life? Can you describe it? If the answer is NO then you have some thinking to do. You don’t need to figure out your whole life yet but set some specific goals. Once you have narrowed down what’s most important for you, focus your energy on that.

However, remember that nothing is set in stone. You evolve and your priorities change. As a designer, I’m a big fan of the book “Designing Your Life” by Bill Burtnett & Dave Evans. They say:

A well-designed life is a life that is generative — it is constantly creative, productive, changing, evolving, and there is always the possibility of surprise.

3. Buy less but better

Before you buy anything new ask yourself those three questions: Will I use it? Do I love it? Do I need it?

As Nicholas Burroughs — visual designer — explains:

Minimalism is not a lack of something. It’s simply the perfect amount of something.

We have a natural tendency to accumulate, upgrade and build upon but it’s also in our control to draw a line and say “it’s enough for me”. Buy things that make you happy, not because someone else has them. Become more intentional with your purchases and invest in products that will last you a long time. A higher price might not be ideal at first, but it’ll save you money in the long run. I used to only shop on sales and when I decluttered my closet recently I realised that most of that stuff is just garbage I paid for.

4. Let go of what you can’t control.

I keep going back to one paragraph in Morgan Housell’s book “Psychology of Money”. He says:

If a risk is what happens when you make good decisions but end up with a bad outcome, luck is what happens when you make bad or mediocre decisions but end up with a great outcome. They both happen because the world is too complex to allow 100% of your actions to dictate 100% of your outcomes.

Good and bad things are happening whenever you want them or not. Not every decision will bring you success, cause you can’t control the future or others. All you can do is do your best now and accept that life is unpredictable (for all of us!).

5. Put your phone down.

James Clear, the author of “Atomic Habits” book, once wrote:

Time and energy that is wasted consuming is time and energy that can’t be spent creating. […] If something isn’t benefitting you, then eliminate it.

How do you feel after checking socials? Does it help with your self-esteem? If not, try to reduce the time you look at your phone and maybe let your mind wander instead. There are many scientific proofs that most creative people are those that let themselves simply gaze into the distance.

Final Note

One of the great things about minimalism is that it looks different for everyone. You can use the above points as a start or look for something that’ll suit you more. The ultimate goal is to be happy and that’s what I want for all of you. Feel free to leave your tips for a happier life in the comments!