Minimalism is about simplifying your life. It’s more than decluttering and owning fewer items. It’s about making intentional choices to have what you only need so that you can enjoy life more and do more with less.
Here are 3 tips to help you start your journey to becoming a master minimalist.
1. Let go of items you don’t need.
In practicing minimalism, it is important to step back from a busy or cluttered materialistic lifestyle. And the way to do this is by learning what to prioritize. What matters to you the most?
One of the most challenging things to do is recognizing what material items we don’t need and then letting go of them. Decluttering is an important aspect in achieving a minimalist lifestyle, and it also can be very difficult to do. So, how can you start?
The first place that you can look at is your closet. It can feel daunting at first to look at your items with the thought that you need to throw a lot of stuff away. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. Minimalism teaches us that we can simplify our life by living with only what we need.
Now, identify. The best way to start is to answer these questions. Which items do you frequently use? Which items do you not use at all, and why?
When an item, such as a piece of clothing, is unused then it’s only eating up space. On the other hand, there might be other items in your home that you have kept for a long time but are only cluttering your space and causing you stress.
Take decluttering as an opportunity to put order into your home. Be intentional when assessing which items are worth keeping. In the words of Marie Kondo, “Does this spark joy?” If not, then it’s time to let go.
When you practice the art of decluttering, you will enjoy improvements in your mood, space, energy, and your overall well being.
2. Let go of thoughts you don’t need.
Being always busy at work presents a perfect opportunity for you to practice minimalism. But it’s not “work” itself that you should let go of. The invitation for you is to cut through the mental clutter by saying no to multitasking.
After all, it can lead to stress and burnout. It’s also not the best way to manage your time. Instead, what you can do is focus on one task at a time. This is more productive, and it will give your mind more breathing space.
Simplifying how you do work and prioritizing tasks can make you become more productive and perform better. It will also make you less tired and forgetful, which can greatly help you achieve more.
As an example, avoid scrolling on social media while you are in a meeting. Don’t watch a movie while writing an email. Or simply, don’t talk on your mobile phone while driving.
Apart from freeing up your headspace from multitasking, letting go of thoughts that you don’t need is also a form of self-care. Let go of thoughts that don’t empower you. Learn to let go of negative thoughts through mindfulness, and focus on those that support your wellbeing.
This doesn’t happen overnight, so do not pressure yourself. Minimalism is a process, not a race. It involves awareness and being intentional.
Decluttering is not limited to your physical space. It also removes junk from your headspace so you can focus on what matters.
3. Reduce consumption.
Minimalism and zero-waste lifestyles share something in common. And that is, practicing mindful consumption which reduces waste and saves resources. Here are easy zero-waste tips that you can do to become a master minimalist.
Unplug appliances that are not in use.
Appliances that are plugged and not in use still consume electricity, leading to energy waste that harms the environment. So, instead of leaving your television on standby or your laptop plugged on a full battery, simply unplug them. With reduced power consumption, you will also get to lower your electric bills, saving you some money.
Use eco-friendly alternatives for single-use everyday items.
Single-use items generate a lot of waste that pollutes our environment. To effectively reduce waste and consumption, take a look at what items you use that produce the most waste, and look for zero-waste or eco-friendly alternatives.
For instance, swap single-use water bottles for reusable water bottles from Tranco. Look for ones that are made of responsibly sourced bamboo or food-grade stainless steel. This will effectively help you avoid producing plastic bottle waste.
Another example is using NakedSwab’s q-tips, LastRound facial pads, or Honest Beauty’s silicone sheet masks in your skincare routine. While cotton is great, producing it uses up thousands of gallons of water and certain toxic materials. These zero-waste versions are made of natural materials that won’t harm you and the environment and can replace 1,750 single-use cotton rounds and 1000 single-use cotton swabs, respectively.
Incorporating zero-waste practices in being a minimalist helps you to become more mindful of what you consume and to reduce waste in your space.