“I got rid of all of my stuff.” How many times have you heard something along those lines, laughed it off, and chalked it up to the first words of another newly converted minimalist? The minimalist movement has officially arrived, and by the looks of it, it’s here to stay for awhile.
Whether you’re ready to hop on the bandwagon or you’re merely curious about the movement, you may want to have a better understanding of this practice. Minimalism renders several benefits, but we’re going to touch on the one goal that really drives the minimalist movement.
Minimalism, according to Merriam-Webster, is: a style or technique (as in music, literature, or design) that is characterized by extreme spareness and simplicity. Sounds...boring?
Don’t worry, we’ve heard that before. A lot of people associate minimalism with over-simplicity and blandness, but the keyword is simplicity. Simplifying your life doesn’t mean making your life boring.
How Is Minimalism Practiced
By definition, minimalism pertains to music, literature, and design—which sounds like it’s practiced strictly within the art and humanities realm. In reality, minimalism can impact so much more. It’s up to you how you want to incorporate this practice into your life. Here are a few of the many ways minimalism plays a role in the world:
Music: Unlike modern-day EDM and pop music, this kind of music includes simple melodies and minimal harmonies. No fancy instruments or crazy patterns, but instead, repetition and simple rhythms.
Design: Homes with subtle colors and few decorations are decorated with minimalism in mind. This type of design boasts a “less is more” philosophy and rarely overwhelms the aesthetic eye. Minimalist design spans from home decor to wardrobe, with branding, marketing designs, and makeup in between.
Diet: Minimalism can be incorporated into your eating habits, too! Food minimalists are all about clearing their diets of anything excessive or extreme. These are not your average foodies —they’re the opposite! They don’t view food as entertainment but simply as a means of survival.
Organization: Minimalism is part of becoming and remaining organized. A minimalist approach to an organized lifestyle means decluttering and keeping your house and workspace clean, tidy, and simple.
Defining the Goal of Minimalism
Now that we’ve been through the meaning of minimalism and a few different practices, you should have an understanding of the ultimate goal of minimalism. After all, it’s not an aimless practice; in fact, it’s a tried-and-true method that has been around for years. So, what’s the goal? Why are people crazy about minimalism?
The goal, like the practice, is simple. It’s about removing all of the extra stuff (be it physical, mental, or emotional) from your life in order to focus on what’s really important to you. In some ways, it’s a “less is more” mindset—except it’s not about getting more. It’s about getting to the core of your essence and your happiness.
A lot of people look at minimalism as a way to re-center their lives, to regain a sense of purpose, and live with intentions. Many of us don’t realize it, but we clutter our lives with so much stuff that we forget to live for the moment.
Minimalism, in a way, boosts mindfulness and appreciation. Think about it this way. If you come home to a messy house filled with stuff every day, your energy levels might go down. It’s draining to see such a lack of organization, because it reminds you that you’re not taking great care of your home. It’s your home base, so the practice of self-care extends into your living space.