I’ve written in earlier post about my move towards a minimalist lifestyle, in many ways inspired by my backpacking. So far my conversion from consumer to minimalist is working out just fine. There have been a lot of changes that I have had to make, but to be honest the feeling I get everyday is that of less stress, less worry and, well, less. I am not constantly obsessing about the stuff I own or what I need to buy to be complete. I have found the latter part to still be a fight though, I do find things I would like to buy and would make my life easier. Though admittedly it’s now about what one thing can replace several and help me with my productivity.
One example of this is have an iMac 27” an iPad Air and two iPhones. Considering I am rather un-productive on an iPad (I just surf the internet and read magazine). My iMac I don’t like sitting at because of it being downstairs and at a desk with a really bad chair. I decided to get rid of the iMac and iPad and replace them with a MacBook Pro instead. (I haven’t really figured out which I would like as my needs include video, photography and writing) I did purchase a MacBook Pro 15” but it is a bit heavy to have with me everywhere.
With that said, having one device instead of two really does make things easier. Some of the benefits include getting rid of a massive desk and work area including office chair. I just sit in my favourite chair upstairs with my MacBook. I’m not just surfing the internet anymore as I would with an iPad, instead I get bored rather quickly of reading the same sites, so I just open up Lightroom and start editing photos, or pull out Ulysses and start writing. Or, best of all I put the computer down and do things with my family instead.
These are the kinds of decisions that I am making all the time to simplify my life and to minimalize my being. When I wake up everyday I have exactly one of my 6 black t-shirts to choose from, one of two sweaters, one of my two pairs of blue jeans to choose from, my black shoes and one backpack. To say that my stress has been removed from my morning routine is an understatement.
Making my way into minimalism has been a challenge at times, but the benefits far outweigh anything else. Now that most of my stuff is gone and I am starting to have lot more time over (since I’m not having to take care of the stuff that I own anymore) I will start working on my psychological minimalism and focus. Such as limiting TV and internet. Tuesdays for example is a completely technology free day for the whole family, and it seems to be the one day of the week we all long for. No internet, no lights, no tv or computers. Just eachother and our imaginations.
Just wanted to say how much I’ve been enjoying your writing, especially the recent, more philosophical stuff. You’re the first person I’ve read of who has taken the lessons of ultra-lighting and applied them to ‘normal’ life. It’s inspiring, especially for this magpie!
I’m off on a Zen Buddhist retreat next week for 5 days. The theme is “the Hungry Ghost”, ie that part of you that is always looking to consume in order to feel satisfied (and which never works). It seems that you’ve been working on your own Hungry Ghost self with some success. I wish you all the best and love the fact that you have more time with your family.
I’m working on all this stuff, so it’s helpful to know others are, too!
Good luck with your hungry ghost. I am writing an article now on how I try to cope with consumerism. And thanks for the compliments, I work hard on my writing and it’s nice to get feedback on it! I am currently working on a new book within minimalism and philosophy – hopefully someday it will be finished 🙂
I love that pillow/ottoman/round object in the corner. Where did you find that piece?
Sorry, I actually stole the picture 🙂 It’s more of my ambition than reality right now.
It’s a good goal to set!
Great post! Just looking at the picture you used makes me feel calm and focused. 🙂
That’s great to hear! It’s these comments that keep me going 😉
I find myself reading this post, sitting at my ‘office’ desk on a crap ‘office’ chair, using a laptop I hate and despise, surround by ‘stuff’ – sound familiar? We live in the glorious English Lake District, and we are comfortable in our modern, minimalist suburban hermetically-sealed town house, knowing that 5 minutes in the car or even 15 minutes walking and we are in breathtaking open country. Recently, we had, what seems to be, our annual clear out of ‘stuff’. Local charity shops benefit every time, friends and family too as we give ‘stuff’ away. The problem, as you have quite rightly identified, is each year we seem generate more of it. This year – we made a commitment – it stops! We keep what we need to a minimum, no duplicates, It’s supprisingly hard to stare at three of your favourite items that do the same thing and only keep one!
Your writing is inspirational, thought provocking, and gives most of us that ‘kick in the arse’ that is needed to bring reality into focus. Life is actually quite simple – loose the stuff, get out and live it!
Thank you for the nice comment. I agree, we tend to make life more difficult than it needs being. Good luck on your journey! Hopefully next year you won’t have anything to give away
Agreed. (my spelling might improve too!)
That level of minimalism is what I’m aiming for!