This was written by Dixie Somers.
The ideas behind minimalism are certainly those nearly anyone can get behind: eliminating clutter to focus on and enjoy the more meaningful things in your life. Actually achieving those goals, however, can be quite difficult. In many cases, it’s difficult to simply know where to start, much less to achieve pure minimalism in all areas of life. Fortunately, starting on the path toward minimalism doesn’t have to be difficult. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.
Write it Out
Though the process of achieving your goal of living a truly minimalist lifestyle is satisfying for some, typically, the most satisfying component of minimalism is the end result. To help motivate yourself, it’s a good idea to write out some “best-case scenarios” of how your life will look when you achieve your desired level of minimalism. For example, it may be that you’ll have extra income and free time to finally take that island vacation you’ve always dreamed of or you’ll finally have enough extra room in your home to pursue that creative passion you’ve previously had to suppress. Whatever your “best-case scenario” looks like, write it out in immense detail, and then allow it to serve as your motivation as you move forward.
In many areas of life, it’s assumed that it’s best to “go big or go home.” When it comes to minimalism, however, your best bet for sustainability is to start small. Depending on your current lifestyle, the level of minimalism you’re hoping to attain could require some drastic changes. To prevent burn out during your journey, it’s important to make changes a few at a time. For example, when going through and decluttering your rooms and possessions, only take on one room at a time until you get it exactly how you want it, then move on. As you see progress in each area, you will be more motivated to work harder in other areas.
Test the Waters
Perhaps you’ve heard of minimalism and have thought of giving it a try but you’re not really sure it’s for you. In that case, you may want to test the waters prior to making any permanent changes. A unique and effective way to do this is to rent a self storage unit to store any belongings you’re thinking of eliminating. This way, you can experience the freedom that fewer belongings can bring you, while ensuring you still have access to the eliminated belongings should you discover you’ve gotten rid of something you still need or want. If you discover you enjoy the newfound freedom, you can then begin the process of looking for new homes for your items.
It’s About You
The most important thing to remember if you’re thinking of starting a minimalist lifestyle is that your lifestyle is totally unique to you. While you can look to others for inspiration, if you try to constantly compare your situation to theirs, it will likely only lead to frustration and even abandonment of the process. Each person’s version is entirely different from every other person’s, and that’s part of what makes the process so beautiful and freeing. Find what’s right for you, start strong, stay motivated, and before you know it, you’ll be well on your way to the minimalist lifestyle you’ve been dreaming of.