A beautiful quote by the Dalai Lama says it all: “People were created to be loved. Things were created to be used. The reason why the world is in chaos is because things are being loved and people are being used.”
Just before I left for my two-month trip in Asia, I had a mission to pack all the stuff in my room. It wasn’t mandatory, but I thought it’s going to be much easier and quicker, in case I will change my mind and decide to move out.
Those hours that I spent packing my stuff were mindblowing. I didn’t realise how much stuff I collected in these few years living in the UK until I was actually forced to face every piece of it. I have to be honest and confess, that a few massive black bin bags went out to the charity, some things were thrown away, and I had one large suitcase, one carry-on, and two big storage bags of stuff waiting for me to return.
I actually thought that living out of a backpack for a few months will bring more gratitude and happiness seeing all of the stuff that I own. But living out of a backpack brought one major thing – understanding, that to live my life to the fullest I don’t need so much material stuff.
This thought was following me for at least a few months. I started feeling so stressed about seeing all the things that I didn’t really need and I didn’t use. It felt that they were taking the space not only in my room, but also in my head. Do you know what I mean? If no – check your junk drawer (I know you have it). It is a drawer filled with all kinds of bits and pieces, like rubber bands, lighters, cables, and all other stuff that you don’t actually use, but it’s there for no reason and you don’t know what to do with all of it, but you keep it anyway.
And one day, like a true blessing, scrolling the world of the internet, my eyes caught one interesting word, yes you know where I’m going, MINIMALISM. I heard about it before, but I never took it too seriously, because I loved having stuff (I believe that this toxic love is based on a combo of my deficiency of money and things while living back in Lithuania, and social media, where I am unconsciously told what I ‘need’ to have).
So what is this MINIMALISM?
I think the word itself says a lot. I think a lot of people (including me) think that it’s just a way of living with less stuff in your room, but when you dig a bit deeper that there is a lot more than that. Minimalism is not only about living in a space only with the things you use, it is also about living with more space in your mind. That means – mindfully choosing the things that enter your life, and consciously focusing on what is important to you.
What are the benefits of Minimalism?
As my journey just started, ok ok maybe a few months ago, I am not a reliable person to notice all the benefits yet, but I definitely noticed a slight change in my life. But I will share a few benefits that I found on my research from people who already mastered this lifestyle:
- No more wasting money for crap you don’t need.
- Less cleaning around the house.
- Less distractions, more focusing on what’s important.
- Freedom from the materialistic world.
- Good for the environment.
- Reduced stress levels – increased happiness!
The list of benefits is a bit longer, but I think these points say a lot about the minimalist lifestyle, and that everyone can be doing it.
How to start Minimalist journey?
Unfortunately there is no book of rules to minimalism. It’s based on simplifying your life by all means. It’s focused on owning and doing things that would add VALUE to your life, which means that what is important to me, might look like an obstacle to you. So Minimalism is very personal.
But the beginning of the journey starts the same for everyone – decluttering. To organise your life, you need to get rid of lots of crap and see what works for you.
My first goal was to declutter my clothes and get rid of the old and unused stuff that filled up the drawers for the last few years (I will post a blog about it soon). It’s been a month since I’ve done that and I already see what else I can let go of my life! Very exciting!
Anyway, I do believe that it’s going to be a lifelong journey, as it is hard to get rid of some habits and detach from the love for clutter. But as The Minimalists say: Minimalism is a tool to rid yourself of life’s excess in favour of focusing on what’s important—so you can find happiness, fulfilment, and freedom.
And what is more important in this life than this?
If you like what you read – follow me on my journey to happiness. Maybe you will find something valuable for your personal journey too!