Minimalism is consistently changing my life. It is providing me and others different benefits, outlooks, and experiences than we originally planned and for the better. Becoming a minimalist is not something I could have imagined a few years ago, and now I cannot imagine life any other way.
Before we jump into today’s post, make sure you check out last week’s post. I answered the question: Why would you want to become a minimalist?
A big misconception about minimalism is that you have to get rid of everything except 100 of the most important things in your life. This is certainly not the case for many minimalists, myself included. While I do admire those who need so little to live a fulfilled life, I need a bit more than 100 items.
For me, the definition of minimalism can be summed up with the words from The Minimalists:
Minimalism is a tool to rid yourself of life’s excess in favor of focusing on what’s important—so you can find happiness, fulfillment, and freedom.
If having a craft hobby makes you happy, please do not rid your life of it just to reduce your items. Decluttering your crafts maybe a bit helpful, but eliminating it completely is not the answer.
Personally, I have two hobbies that require specific things. I can vegetables, so I need jars, a pressure cooker, canning supplies, and a few other things. My other hobby that I voluntarily have a collection of is books. While I do not have as many as I used to, I do consider my hobby a small collection. All of my books fit on one book case, and it all brings me happiness.
I am not willing to part with either of these things, because they do bring value into my life. They may not be necessary to you, but you may have something that I would not find necessary for my life. That is the beauty of life, interests, and individualism.
Just like last week, I am going to answer another question. Today’s question is:
What are the benefits to becoming a minimalist?
1. Less Stuff! More Space! //
This one is the most obvious answer I can give, but it is the first benefit you will notice when transitioning to a minimalist lifestyle. When you can comb through everything to see what you want or discard, you are able to see how much excess you have in your home. As you declutter, you are physically moving things out of your home, creating more space, and allowing your home to breathe.
If you are anything like me, when I started decluttering, freeing up space is more so providing space for things to fit comfortably versus being stuffed. [Please tell me I am not alone!]
It may take a few rounds of decluttering to get your home to where you want it. Yes, the hard work is worth the effort! It took me several months to sort through all of my things, and I finally feel that I have a grasp on what I have.
Related Posts: How to Determine What Stays or Leaves?
2. Less time cleaning and organizing! //
How many times have you organized and reorganized your things only to feel like you wasted your time? It is not a matter of being organized or not; it is a matter of removing the things you do not need to allow the things you do need to have a space that is specifically for it. Being tidy is much easier than reorganizing all of the time. Trust me! I have been there, bought the t-shirt, then donated it because I did not need it! haha!
So getting to my point… By removing the excess, we create space for the things we do value. If everything in your home has a space, then things are tidier. Having a tidy home, allows you to get organized quicker, and cleaning takes up less time.
You may be asking why or how that is possible. Think of it like this, if you use something and put it up when you are finished using it [because it has a home now], your home stays tidy. If you make it a point to take a few minutes a day to tidy your home, things stay in order. Having less also allows you to not have so many things to tidy, so it is a breeze!
Another thing I suggest, is to clear as much off of your counter tops as possible. By having less on the counter tops, wiping them down each day is easier, because you do not have to constantly move things out of your way to clean. It helps your space look bigger, too!
3. Small, but fabulous wardrobe! //
If you have not tried a capsule wardrobe, I highly suggest to do so today! Having a cohesive wardrobe makes life much simpler. The pieces within your wardrobe should work together many different ways, this way you always have something to wear.
Often times, people think if a new top does not go with anything else in the wardrobe, you should purchase something else to go with it. Then you grow your wardrobe trying to make it work. In reality, having a large wardrobe gives your mind too many options to process, which results in feeling like you have nothing to wear.
Have you heard the statement:
You wear 20% of the pieces in your wardrobe, 80% of the time
This is because your wardrobe is full of pieces that are not versatile enough to flow with your wardrobe, do not fit properly, or pieces you do not like. By creating a wardrobe that works together and is full of the pieces you look fabulous wearing, you create endless possibilities.
One personal example of the wardrobe I used to have, is the brown versus black debate. I personally do not look good in brown colors. My skin tone will look washed out each time I try. When I did try, I definitely did not feel my best. However, I refused to see this, so my wardrobe had several pieces I did not wear often. Once I picked my primary neutral, things flowed together much easier. Now my wardrobe is based on a black neutral, and it all works together beautifully!
[Here is a post I wrote explaining how to rebuild your wardrobe, if you would like to read it.]
4. Reduced Stress! //
You have no idea how stressed you are until you work to reduce it. How minimalism can help is by finding your trigger points. By focusing on what makes you happy and removing the rest, you will be able to find them. Yes, you have to look inwards, but it is not as bad as it sounds.
Once I focused on removing the excess, I noticed that my surroundings triggered my stress. I cannot stand a messy or crowded room. It seriously stresses me! I used to have panic attacks when it became too much. When I noticed how a tidy and clean room changed that, I was sold! I have talked about this several times throughout my blog, so I will leave you with a few links of my personal experience for you to read.
5. More Time! //
Once you finish with decluttering and refine your routine, you will actually find more time to do the things you love and enjoy! I know this sounds crazy, but I am living proof that it is true! If you are in the mist of decluttering or spend all of your time cleaning and organizing, you may have a hard time seeing how it is possible.
BUT one day you will be done with all of that. Then what? What will you do with the free time you have? Will you start gardening, read more books, learn a new skill, discover your passions, spend more time with your children?
You see, when you remove all of the distractions of clutter and excess, you have a new focus. This focus can be towards living the life of your dreams! What do you dream of doing? Do you dream of going back to school, starting your own company, paying off your debt [by the way, selling things you declutter can help this goal tremendously! Check out my tips for a successful garage sale!]? Could you see yourself working towards your dreams with more time?
6. Clarity! //
This is a bit of a wild card bonus. Before I became a minimalist and focused on what I was passionate about, I tried many different things. From owning my own business to refinishing furniture to then trying to write book reviews, my life was a mess! Each thing I tried made me more confused. I could not grasp what I wanted to do. My passions were not being cultivated, because I did not know what they were.
Again, when I removed distractions and excess from my life, I found out why I could not discover my passions. It was because I had not lived a fulfilling life to be able to discover them due to all the mess! Once it was all removed, I found my passion for living a minimalist lifestyle, and chose to write about it. From there, I have cultivated an amazing community of like minded people and helped others who were feeling the exact same way!
I gained clarity for my life! A couple of other passions include gardening and investments. I am currently back in school seeking my second degree in Finance. Thanks to minimalism, I have that clarity to pursue all of these things.
What are some things you would pursue if you had the clarity?
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