The Beginner’s Guide to a Minimalist Mindset
When most people think about minimalism they only think about empty closets and white furniture. But a minimalist mindset is about so much more.
The minimalist mindset is not just about getting rid of material possessions, it’s also about removing unfulfilling commitments, relationships, desires and anything else preventing you from living your best life.
It’s about cutting through junk to find treasures. It’s about finding the time and money to focus on what matters. It’s about creating space and filling that space with opportunity.
Adopting a minimalist mindset is a life changing experience that will allow you to increase your health, wealth and well-being. It can be applied to all areas of life. Here are some examples to get you started.
Material minimalism is what most people think of when they think of minimalism. There is a ton of information on relieving yourself of the burden of material possessions out there.
I would suggest checking out The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo. Kondo doesn’t actually mention “minimalism” in the book, but she is an expert on purging possessions and detaching sentimentality from objects.
Material minimalism reduces stress and increases time and energy by removing the paradox of choice.
James Altucher has written extensively on the power of saying no in order to free up time, money, energy and more. The main lesson here: Say no to things you don’t want to do. It’s that simple. Everyone is “so busy” but no one actually does anything. Saying no frees up time to say “yes” to things that are actually important.
“When you start just saying “No” to the bad things, the “Yes” compounds every day. It compounds automatically, the way interest does in a non-US bank..” — James Altucher
To sum it up: You only have so much time, don’t fill it up with things you don’t want to do.
“You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.”― Jim Rohn
This quote is tossed around a lot — because it’s true. The minimalist seeks to eliminate negative relationships in favor of positive relationships. This means cutting out people who bring you down and replacing them with people who raise you up. It’s tough, but it will change you in every way.
Greed and jealousy are inherently negative emotions based on superficial desires. Negative emotions are unproductive (unless they fuel positive change). A minimalists looks to limit superficial desires to allow the mind to focus on positive change.
Many people are lugging around emotional baggage, preventing them from running free. The minimalist mindset would say, “just throw it out.” Same goes for complaining. If it’s not doing you any good, it’s doing you bad.
These are some brief examples of how a minimalist mindset can affect your outlook on life. Think of other areas where applying this mindset would be beneficial. Your finances? Your media consumption? Your eating habits? Social media? Drinking? All of these would benefit from the minimalist mindset.