MINIMALISM IS OWNING FEWER POSSESSIONS.
Minimalism is intentionally living with only the things one really need—those items that support his/her purpose. One can remove the distraction of excess possessions so he/she can focus more on those things that matter most.
That is a short, elevator-pitch answer.
But oftentimes to answer more in-depth. But to explain simple living further, we can add:
IT IS INTENTIONALITY.
It is marked by clarity, purpose, and intentionality. At its core, being a minimalist means intentionally promoting the things we most value and removing everything that distracts us from it.
It is a life that forces intentionality upon us. As a result, it forces improvements in almost all aspects of your life.
Intentionality looks different for everybody, as no two individuals are the same, but it requires each of us to dive deeper and become more introspective about our values and passions.
IT IS FREEDOM FROM THE PASSION TO POSSESS.
Modern culture has bought into the lie that the good life is found in accumulating things—in possessing as much as possible. They believe that more is better and have inadvertently subscribed to the idea that happiness can be purchased at a department store.
But they are wrong. Embracing minimalism brings freedom from the all-consuming passion to possess. It steps off the treadmill of consumerism and dares to seek happiness elsewhere. It values relationships, experiences, and soul-care. It lets us see all that we already have and reminds us to be grateful.
In doing so, we find a more abundant life.
IT IS FREEDOM FROM MODERN MANIA.
Our world runs at a feverish pace. We are too hurried, too rushed, and too stressed. We work long, passionate hours to pay the bills, but fall deeper into debt every day. We rush from one activity to another—even multitasking along the way—but never seem to get anything done. We remain in constant connection with others through our cell phones, but true life-changing relationships continue to elude us.
Becoming a minimalist slows down life and frees us from this modern hysteria to live faster. It offers freedom to disengage. It seeks to keep only the essentials. It aims to remove the frivolous and keep the significant. It values the intentional endeavors that add value to life.
IT IS FREEDOM FROM DUPLICITY.
Although nobody intentionally chooses it, most people live in duplicity. They live one life around their family, one life around their co-workers, and another life around their neighbors. The lifestyle they have chosen requires them to portray a certain external image dependent upon their circumstances. They are tossed and turned by the most recent advertising campaign or the demands of their employer.
On the other hand, a simple life is united and consistent. It has learned a lifestyle that is completely transferable no matter the situation. It is the same life on Friday evening as it is on Sunday morning… as it is on Monday morning. It is reliable, dependable and unfluctuating. It works in all circumstances. It is honest and transparent.
IT IS COUNTER-CULTURAL.
We live in a world that idolizes celebrities. They are photographed for magazines, interviewed on the radio, and recorded for television. Their lives are held up as the golden standard and are envied by many. People who live simple lives are not championed by the media in the same way. They don‘t fit into the consumerist culture that is promoted by corporations and politicians. Yet, they live a life that is attractive and inviting.
While most people are chasing after success, glamour, and fame, minimalism calls out to us with a smaller, quieter, calmer voice. It invites us to slow down, consume less, but enjoy more. And when we meet someone living a simplified life, we often recognize that we have been chasing after the wrong things all along.
IT IS NOT EXTERNAL, BUT INTERNAL.
The principles have helped hundreds of thousands find freedom by removing much of the physical clutter in their homes and concentrates almost exclusively on the externals of life. And while it helps people find freedom from external clutter, it does not take the next step of helping people find freedom and unity in their heart and soul.
We have learned embracing this lifestyle is always a matter of the heart. After the external clutter has been removed, we create the space to address the deepest heart issues that impact our relationships and life.
IT IS COMPLETELY ACHIEVABLE.
Becoming a minimalist is completely achievable. My family stands as living proof. We were just your typical family of four living in the suburbs accumulating as much stuff as our income and credit cards would allow. Then, we found minimalism. We have embraced minimalist living and will never go back to the way life was before. We stand as living proof that simple living is completely achievable (and unique) to anyone who seeks it.