Minimalism comes in many shapes and sizes. While there is no one, right way to live a minimalistic lifestyle, you do typically choose to live with less. In my minimalist approach, less spending, less stuff and less obligation, are all part of being a minimalist. I think more and more people are becoming interested in living real lives that don’t revolve around stuff, but are afraid to aspire to minimalism, because of a few misconceptions that I hope to clear up.
10 Misconceptions about Minimalism
Minimalism is an event – Minimalism starts in your heart and mind, not in your closet. Cleaning your closet does not make you a minimalist, but could be the start of it.
Minimalism is a religion – The only thing you have believe in to adopt a minimalist lifestyle, is that your life will be better with less.
Minimalists never spend money – Spending on the essentials and what matters to you, is different than a shopping spree at Target or spending a day at the mall. Minimalists often spend purposefully and vote with their dollars.
Minimalists are selfish – They may not spend on extravagant gifts, but because they have cleared the clutter in their own lives, they have the time and space to be more thoughtful about yours, and in turn become more giving.
Minimalists all live with less than 100 things – Dave Bruno and many other minimalists live with less than 100 things, but that doesn’t mean you have to do that to start applying minimalism to your life.
Minimalists live alone and don’t have kids – I have a daughter and husband, Joshua Becker has a wife and two young children, Leo Babauta is married with 6 children.
Minimalism is extreme – It could be as extreme, but you can jump into minimalism anytime, in any situation.
You have to be born into minimalism – I did not grow up or live most of my adult life with less, in fact, it was with excess. Just like I stopped eating meat and became a vegetarian, I have stopped living with too much, and am becoming a minimalist. It’s your life, and you can change it, whenever you want to.
Minimalists don’t drive cars – Tammy Strobel from Rowdy Kittens doesn’t drive a car, but I do. Depending on your current life situation, you may need a car. I do, but choose to drive less.
If your partner is not a minimalist, you can’t be one either – While my husband is excited about simplifying our life, I am definitely leading the movement in our house. He may never want to get rid of as much as I do, and some days, I think he is afraid that he will come home and find out that I gave away the front door, and kitchen sink. That being said, I think he is noticing that the less time I spend on stuff, the more I spend on him and us.
If minimalism is appealing to you, keep in mind that you can dip your toe or dive right in!