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This is why minimalism rocks!

April 6, 2010

If I talk about minimalism to others one of the first questions I get is why? What makes minimalism so special that you are willing to “follow” its rules? To be frank I could give you dozens of reasons why minimalism is so awesome but I’m not going to do that. I’m just going to name three reasons:

1. An empty room is a clean room
Student dorms aren’t renown for their cleanliness. But from a health perspective a maximum level for the amount of dust/dirt/pizza boxes/beer bottles/stuff is necessary. But even with that maximum allowed amount of stuff cleaning a single dorm room is very time consuming act. This makes cleaning one of the most annoying tasks there is and the easiest to postpone. My dorm room wasn’t an exception. That changed gradually when I started to throw stuff away. I’m not saying all my stuff, just the things that I didn’t use any more. By emptying my room the time I needed to clean shortened. This comes from a single fact: it is easier to clean an empty surface. Less stuff means more empty surfaces means less time I need to clean. This makes cleaning a less annoying task. This kind of reasoning can naturally be applied to any room.

2. Less commitments means more freedom
Make sure that if you are willing to make any kind of commitment that you are willing to keep yourself to it. If you can’t do that you shouldn’t make the commitment. I’m talking here about commitment in a broad sense. Every commitment, whether it’s promising yourself that you will do a certain task tomorrow or that you will exercise every week on Monday, should be thought through. This may sound a bit harsh but in the end it will liberate you. Why? Just look what happens to your agenda when you make too many commitments. It becomes full with things that probably aren’t even important to you. By making your commitments count you achieve two things. The first is that you and the people around you can rely on the commitments you make. Being reliable goes a long way. That second and best part is that you have much more free time to do stuff that really counts like meeting your friends and enjoying life itself.

3. Stop buying things keeps my wallet full
There is a danger in emptying your closets and that is that you will buy new stuff just to fill the empty spaces. By minimizing your impulse purchases in general you can save a lot of money. A nice example is when I quit smoking about six months ago. Quitting smoking should translate in 120 euros (I smoked a lot) less expenses but at the end of the month I was as poor as I was the month before. From the moment I stopped smoking I instinctively started to buy more food, games, anything. Some minimalists use a 30 day rule. If you still want to buy something after 30 days you should buy it. I’m not completely sure if that will be my solution but I’ll inform you when I find a system that works for me. Until I find that system I try to make every purchase a conscious act. The result is that I am a richer man than I was last month. Now I can do or buy things that really matter like going to the zoo with my girlfriend.

These reasons combined give me the following sentence. Minimalism gives me a nice and clean living and work environment, enough time for me to do the things that are important to me and the means to execute them. And that is why I choose minimalism as a lifestyle.

[tweetmeme source=”living_minimal” only_single=false style=compact]

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Frank permalink
    April 10, 2010 16:19

    But why cufflinks?

    • April 10, 2010 20:44

      Nice picture. :) but the symbolism is in the question marks.

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