The academic definition of minimalist lifestyle-
Lifestyle whereby your belongings and activities are reduced to the necessary elements.
That is a very broad definition and it looks very different for a lot of people. Don’t give up on this concept until you learn a little more about it. You might find it intriguing!
Joshua Becker, father of 2, got tired of spending all his “free time” taking care of his stuff instead of spending time with those most important to him. Becker, a pastor of student ministries, chronicles the family’s minimalist lifestyle on his blog, Becoming Minimalist.
Here are some excerpts from an interview Smarter Planet did with Joshua Becker
What does it mean to live a minimalist life?
Most people live their life trying to acquire more and more things. Living a minimalist lifestyle is completely the opposite. It’s about trying to live with less and less things. It’s about trying to get back to the bare minimum of possessions. In doing that, it frees up your life to pursue the things you most value.
What about personal health effects? Has becoming minimalist affected your health?
Yes, in direct and indirect ways. One of the best benefits of embracing a minimalist lifestyle is there’s less stress. You don’t have debt hanging over your head. There’s less hurry to make more money to buy the next thing coming out. Less stress leads to a more healthy lifestyle.
Talk about how minimalism can affect our impact on the environment.
When we consume less, we’re able to preserve the world in a better natural state. Also, embracing a minimalist lifestyle leads you to desire less. In that motivation, you find greater good for the environment. So often, the environmental movement is motivated by guilt. [But] if we can truly inspire people to find contentment in the life they have, that becomes a much more powerful motivating tool to taking care of the planet.
Here are some other Minimalists, all who look different.
Leo Babauta at Zen Habits has 6 children, lives a simpler life, and just moved his family halfway around the world!
We have the Guy Named Dave, who has sparked a movement with his 100 things challenge.
We have the single minimalist, Francine Jay at miss minimalist.
There is Faith Jones at Minimalist Moms, who, like Joshua, is tired of so much “stuff” being in her way of living life.
Faith at Minimalist mom has a good definition of what minimalism is and looks like for her.
“I want….less! I want less mess, less cleaning, less organizing, less fussing at the kids to pick up their toys, less time given away to chores, and less stress dealing with it all. Because what I really want is….more! More time with my family, more family camping trips, more joy, more relaxation, and more happy memories being made.”
What does a minimalist life look like?
It can be white walls and bare floors, or it can be lovingly placed special pictures and a comfortable rug for your baby to play on.
It can be a Kindle with all your books on it, or it can be a treasured, pared-down collection of books, and ones from the library in and out on a regular basis.
It can be an apartment in the city and no car, or it can be a small farm in the country with its garden and yard for playing in.
Minimalism can be what YOU want it to be.
The most important word in the defining of minimalist living is intentional. That you don’t just let life keep happening to you based upon decisions you made without thinking them out. You decide what is important in your life and you choose to make those things a priority.
Living intentionally. That’s what minimalist living is.
How about you? Do you want less, so you can get more out of life?
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