Minimalism has been around for thousands of years, but still up to now is practiced by many people. Actually as the years pass it attracts even more people and now it’s one of the most famous ways of living around the world. Why is that? And what actually the life of a minimalist looks like?

The concept of minimalism started like many other things in the Asian culture. Its philosophy says that you need to let go of attachments with the physical objects that you possess and instead focus on living your life. The Buddhist monks that started it were serious about that and possessed less than 10 items including their clothes. They didn’t care about acquiring new items; instead they strove to become more aware of themselves and their surroundings while being more kind and compassionate with other life forms whether they were humans or the nature. Less attachment to physical objects leads to less suffering according to them. For example think of something that you care about a lot. What if it breaks? All the negative emotions will consume you. Hate, depression, dissatisfaction etc. Instead of that use your energy on loving and caring about others, which brings happiness, joy and satisfaction. That’s one of the many lessons we can learn from Buddhism for having a happier life.

The Life Upgrades - Buddhist Monks

There have been some other great examples of minimalist people who were not Buddhist monks. The most well-known was Mahatma Gandhi. He was born into a rich family and studied Law in London. However at some point onward he started living a life of simplicity, he gave his wealth to others and spend his life trying to unite people. When Gandhi died, the only possessions he had were his eyeglasses, a piece of clothing, sandals, an eating bowl, a watch and needles to sew his clothes. He didn’t even have a house. However he learned to love life and tried to help others, in order to see his vision of people accepting each other and coming together. He was the ultimate minimalist.

The Life Upgrades - Ghandi Quote

Some of you may think “Why should I even consider living this kind of life?” Especially in our days that technology it’s at its peak and we can’t live without materials. I’m not telling you to live like Gandhi or a Buddhist monk because that’s really hard. I, myself don’t do it to those extremes but I try to remove a few attachments from my life every day, and believe me that feels great. You start to see the world around you as it is, and not as we, the humans want to make it look like. Technology helps us improve our lives but we got so obsessed by it that we can’t do anything without using some kind of device. That makes us less sociable people and we lose our connection with other human beings and the environment. We became alienated with the natural things, which are the important ones. That’s why every day more and more people are dying of depression, anxiety, stress, fear, not living a healthy life and so on. We experience more situations like that and even new causes of death every day and most of us don’t do anything about it. We kill ourselves and we don’t care.

The Life Upgrades - Depression

Probably there still many people who can’t think of themselves being a minimalist because they can’t live without their favourite items. Or they don’t believe that minimalism can make them happier. Let’s talk about a few simple examples and why they are so helpful on helping us live a better life.

  • Stop purchasing things that you don’t need. For someone else might be important but not everything is necessary for everyone. That’s what marketers want you to believe, so you can spend your money to make them richer and Stop purchasing things that you don’t need. For someone else might be important but not everything is necessary for everyone. That’s what marketers want you to believe, so you can spend your money to make them richer and become poorer. Think logically if you really need that item, not because the ad makes it look desirable.
  • If you need something ask for a friend to borrow his/hers, instead of buying it and using it only once. Or you can learn to create it by yourself. Internet is full of tutorials in our days and easy to follow.
  • Old things or things that you haven’t used them for a long period of time sell them to a thrift shop or to someone else that needs them or give them away. More space in your house and you get money too. Also by removing in any way you prefer physical items from your life, you remove attachments too and care more about yourself and the living things.
  • After removing unnecessary objects from the house, cleaning it up will help you know exactly where the rest of the things are when you need them. Also by having the essential furniture and decorations saves you money, the house is not messed up and speeds up the cleaning process.
  • You don’t need luxurious food to be happy. Eat simple, healthy products and you will be healthier. Especially if you grow them in the back of your yard and you save money from buying food too.
  • By not creating attachments to food products you don’t get obsessed by them. So when the stores run out of them, you don’t start feeling all these negative emotions. Also when you find something delicious every now and then you appreciate it more.
  • When you buy clothes, buy different colours and only the ones that you really need. For example don’t buy 15 jeans; 2-3 will do the job. However find clothes that match with each other, therefore having more combinations in the end.
  • Same goes with the kitchen or any other room in your house. You don’t need 20 different types of knifes to cook. You might need 2-4 but no more than that. Stop wasting money.
  • Working out can be done without paying gym memberships. Go outside, breathe fresh air, feel the sun on your skin and do a few body weight exercises (calisthenics) or running. You will feel more energy; you will be healthier, more productive and save money.
  • When you travel find the most important items to pack. Also don’t fill your bags with more clothes than you really need. You can wear a t-shirt for 2-3 times if it’s still clean. Less packaging saves you money at the airport, reduced the stress on your body from carrying the bags and you have fewer items to worry about.
  • Watch less television or use less electronic devices, instead go out to the forests or mountains and connect with the nature. Or go out and socialize with other people. The most important things are free and easy to find. You just need to let go of the ones you got used to have because they are not real.
The Life Upgrades - Closet

These are just a few ways that you can start implementing in your life and live as a minimalist. There are plenty more ways, some may work for you and others may not. Find what works best, learn to be happy with what you already have, remove unnecessary attachments by loving other life forms, not mechanical items, simplify your life and be mindful of your inner peace.

Share this article to inform more people and tell us your thoughts in the comments below: Are you a minimalist? If not- Are you considering of becoming one? What steps will you start doing? Do you have any other suggestions?