When the topic of “minimalist living” comes up, many people first think of bare walls, empty rooms, and abstaining from indulgence. But, unfortunately, the images that minimalism first conjures up in our minds often seem somewhat joyless.
But in truth, minimalists are about the exact opposite: at the heart of a minimalist life is the idea of giving more space – in the form of time, energy, and attention – to the people and things that are important to us.
Those who live minimalist lives have found that their true interests, goals, and dreams are often buried under quite a bit of clutter – tangible and intangible. But, unfortunately, it’s not just too much clutter that prevents a carefree life and holds us back, but also our myriad expectations, obligations, and worries.
The solution from the minimalist’s point of view? We recognize what is essential for us when we free ourselves from the abundance around us. Beneath the baggage of the past, minimalists find a simpler and better life. After letting go of everything unimportant, our hands are free to reach for what is great in life.
Minimalist living: 5 Tips for Beginners
Do you also feel that everything is too much for you, you are trapped in a hamster wheel, and you have no time for the things that are good for you? Then I recommend you give minimalism a try. You can start right away.
For all those who are looking for a little help to get started, the following 5 rules are intended:
1. Sort out your closet
The easiest way to take the first step toward a more minimalist life is to start with your physical belongings. Sorting out your closet is especially good because it can quickly transform from a problem area to an energy field.
•If you sort out the clothes that don’t fit you (anymore).
•Do not fit you (anymore).
•Have holes and are worn out.
•You have not worn it for more than a year.
•Still carry the price tag.
you will end up with only clothes in your closet that fit you well, that you enjoy wearing and that you feel comfortable in.
Bet you’ve never decided on an outfit so quickly in the morning?
2. Letting go of things and using them up
Minimalism is not a competition to throw away as much as possible or own as little as possible. Rather, the focus is on the things that benefit and delight us. It’s amazing how many things don’t fall into these two categories.
To begin your minimalism journey, you might part with the items that are broken and beyond repair. My tip is that you can often find things in the basement or attic.
The bathroom is another place where things we don’t use (anymore) magically accumulate. Expired medicines and cosmetics should be disposed of for health reasons.
You can use up your collection of creams, shower gels, shampoos, and cosmetic samples before you buy new drugstore products. This frees up space in your bathroom cabinet and also clears your mind. Just try it out.
3. Shopping more consciously
Whether due to advertising promises, boredom, the need to belong, or with the goal of reward – we don’t just buy because we need something. Through consumption, we also try to fill a void within ourselves.
But the truth is: buying happiness doesn’t work. After only a short time, we have become accustomed to a new car, a larger apartment, or the luxury handbag – and are as happy as before.
Minimalists, therefore, consciously pay attention to what they spend their money on. Next time you go shopping, for example, ask yourself:
Do I really need this?
Is it a trendy product, or am I likely to get something out of it for a long time?
Can I borrow the product or buy it used?
By asking these and similar questions, you not only save yourself the guilty conscience that follows on the heels of many impulse purchases. You also save your wallet, the space in your apartment, and the environment.
4. Not saying “yes” right away
The fact that we all have far too much on our plate is also because we don’t like to say “no.” So, for fear of being seen as selfish, new tasks, appointments, and commitments end up in our diary *suddenly* – even though it’s already full to the brim.
A more minimalist alternative: the next time you’re spontaneously asked for a favor, don’t say yes right away. Instead, ask for some time to think it over. For example, answer, “I want to check my calendar first / talk to my partner/sleep on it for a night.” Even if you agree afterward (if you want to), this delaying method will have taught you not to be caught off guard and to take a stand for your needs.
5. Take time for yourself
When was the last time you did something you really enjoyed? Unfortunately, some people have completely forgotten their passion or never find the time to cultivate their own interests. That’s why living minimalist is so valuable: you gain more time for the people and things that mean something to you.
I recommend the following short exercise to get you started: Write down 10 activities on a piece of paper that you enjoy that put a smile on your face and make your heart beat faster. Just writing them down makes us aware of our favorite activities again.
In the future, make sure you set aside some time each week for at least one of the activities you’ve written down.
Where do you find the time, you ask? Well, you could get up a few minutes earlier in the morning, spend a little less time in front of the TV or on your smartphone, or schedule a fixed time in your calendar to pursue your hobby as a matter of course.
Minimalism is a path that gradually leads you to a simpler and better life.
Start small. Pick one of the 5 tips described and put it into practice at your own pace. It doesn’t matter how long it takes. In the beginning, it is about finding out what is good for you.
You will notice step by step you will feel relieved by a minimalist lifestyle in all areas of your life. With each decision, you will know better what you need and what you don’t, what is important to you and what is not. And over time, minimalism will help you live the way you want to live.