Minimalism or death: in defense of minimalism


There was a time when I lived in the deep provincial town on the shore of lake Baikal. If you have not lived on the shore of lake Baikal, do not rush to speak, how cool is that: first try and then Express their opinion. Try to live where reigns six months frost and snow, and the train tickets and the aircraft are incredibly expensive. I assure you: someday you’d want at least a month to get out of this godforsaken place and look for another life. How to do it? I have found one universal way — hitchhiking.

As I collected the backpack is the song of songs. I had a change of pants, shorts, warm jacket, t-shirt, shorts, raincoat, pants and socks, sleeping bag, Mat, tent, bowl-a mug-spoon, Atlas of highways, soap and other pleasures for washing, sunscreen, water bottle, food, a charger for mobile phone, camera, charger for camera, notebook with contacts — and it is certainly not everything, just don’t want to be too picky. In the end, stuff was typed on a large 75 litre travel backpack that towered over my head. Try as I might, could not refuse anything, not even sunscreen, because without it, my face was red from the first hour spent on the track.

One day my friends split and went to a music festival. Split up because two dudes drove in my car never go to jail. When I accidentally met on the road one of my friends, I felt like a complete idiot. While I waited behind her enormous backpack, that little bastard has cost ordinary city backpack and looked much prettier. Giant backpack gave me a view of the running of the Forester and dirty chipana that rides on Utrish, while Paul urban backpack looked decent fellow. And then I realized that in life it’s time to change something.

If he could do fewer things, so can I. I can take less clothes and abandon ware, can carry less food and finally buy a normal sleeping bag, but this is not the Soviet monster. In short, I had a revelation: we really need much less stuff than it seems at first glance.

When I next went on the road with a small backpack, I realized that fewer things means greater comfort and greater safety. I became more agile, it was easier for me, and I slowly got tired. I realized all of the benefits of minimalism: simplicity, efficiency and freedom.

Life for products

Tyler Durden, the character is my favorite «Fight club», said: «In the end, things start to own you.»

Look at our lives. I have already said that all the stuff I needed fit in an urban backpack. The way it is, and not just me. And how do we live? Our apartments are full of armor and stuff, and finally my friend brought home another haul from the bookstore and wonder, where do we put all these books is to buy another rack? As we are two 23-year-old man, managed to buy so many things? And here’s the paradox: many of them, but at the same time, if you need more.

I’m reminded of my grandfather. Things are never held in his life so much room as in mine. I remember when I visited him at home, always marveled at the austerity of the situation: sofa, wardrobe, bookshelves — that’s all that is in his Studio apartment. What he carries with him? Oh no, he’s not carrying a backpack as his prodigal grandson, who need to constantly drag behind a book, a pen, notebook, water, lunch box, wet and dry wipes. And don’t say napkins for the women: I am very squeamish and can’t stand the feeling of dirty hands. Now that carries my grandfather? Keys, a handkerchief and a pocket knife. My grandfather, of course, there are things, but not what he needed. He understands what is necessary for survival, he has every thing serves its purpose and is intended.

When I thought about people that I admire, it dawned on me what they have in common: contempt for the excess of wealth. Their experience and confidence manifested in the fact that they do not need much to live well. They can be in the woods a week, carrying only a knife. Their property can not control the course of their lives. They quietly put the phone on the table and forget about it, they don’t sit all day on the Internet. Such people are in control of your stuff, not Vice versa. True courage means freedom from slavery, and from slavery of ownership.

This idea inspired me, and then his head descended to the inevitable: «now what?» Yes, I wanted to be free from the bondage of things, but how to make it happen? How to opt out of all these applications, the easy stuff, cable television, microwave ovens, coffee makers? I searched for answers and tried to separate in the bigger places, when I stumbled on your backpack and remember past adventures. And then I visited the idea:

And then I weed out from your backpack is all superfluous, the same can be done now. Simplicity, efficiency and freedom combined with a minimum of things is a not only travel but also everyday life.

Learning to live minimalistic

I have found a way to travel with a minimum of things — and now we have to learn to live with minimum things. I googled the problem and found a lot of blogs that described the benefits of a minimalist life. It dawned on me that a lot of things have become jaded, I’m not alone.

After reading this topic, I realized that to live a minimalist means to get rid of unnecessary and thus free up space for what gives you joy. This means to get rid of clutter in all its manifestations, ustavivshis alone with freedom and ease.

  • Minimalist doesn’t want to have more, to consume and buy more, he did not think that more is better. The minimalist sees beauty in the small, aesthetics — wise use it satisfy what you need and what makes us truly happy.
  • The minimalist understands that the acquisition of things does not make us happy. What to earn more and have more — pointless. That score a life of constant activity does not make sense, this should be avoided.
  • A minimalist values quality, not quantity — in all forms.

The last point is very important. My grandfather never wanted to have more, but his stuff was always high quality. Items should be something connected with time, place, person, mean to you. Vintage pocket watch, good cigar humidor, quality shoes — you understand what I mean. Everything we have, need to keep easily. Things like a handful of sand: the harder you squeeze, the less you can hold.

If I die that after I left my friend? Piles of boxes of meaningless crap. I started to search in his apartment something that could sell or donate. It couldn’t change my life, but the process has begun. Every wardrobe I was surprised that I ordered from eBay and waited with impatience, cursing at the Mail of Russia, now lying somewhere in the dusty corners and more does not interest me. The possession of these things has not made me happier. And every day I looked in the cupboards again. Every little step towards a life with fewer things, for me, was an adventure.

If you start from time to time to throw away old books and t-shirts, you become a minimalist? Unlikely. To save the life of garbage is a great step, but minimalism is an approach to life, is the lack of desire to accumulate. Advertising convinces us that we need what we never knew, and operates our soul, promising us pleasure for a couple hundred rubles. Shopping centre becomes a temple, and a Bank card — an indulgence. To be a minimalist means to cease to buy everything. A couple of tips for you guys.

The principles of minimalism

1. No unnecessary things

This does not mean that you don’t need things. Only unnecessary things.

2. Learn to highlight important

What for you the most important? What makes you happy? What more of a difference to your life and career?

3. All considered

What would you have left in your life, this should be worth it. Every detail is considered.

4. Fill the joy of life

Do not just empty — on a vacant place it is necessary to place something pleasant.

5. Change and change again

Minimalism is not a value in itself. It’s a constant progress, and constant revision, constant editing.

6. Don’t hold onto things too much

Even the most valuable. Life is precious not things, but relationships.

It is structurally simple, but not easy. However, the joy and the benefits of minimalism will stay with you, even if you go to him in small steps.

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