Minimalism does not cover just possessions. It is a lifestyle. It covers food, errands, commitments, procedures, and exercise.
Here are some minimalist philosophies to make life more effortless. Resistance shouldn’t be a goal of ours, even if we’re religious. It may come, but our goal should be to live as brothers and sisters. In that vein, we have to have principles that guide us, or else our thoughts and emotions will guide us and we will got tossed to and fro.
The goal of the minimalist is to become one, one personality, one face, even in hard times, online times. We want to be the same face whether at work or home so that we can live honestly and be the same person in front of our spouse, family, boss, and friends. The only way to have one face is to live with integrity; there will be nothing to hide.
Honesty is essential to minimalism. Honesty with ourselves, who we really are, and honesty with others.
Move slowly. Put aside just one day where you do everything you normally rush through as slowly as possible. This includes showering and cooking.
Give equal weight to all activities. The moment you have now is all you have. So treat every moment with equal attention and joy – whether dishes, talking with a stranger, or working. Mindfulness is an easy concept, but a hard habit. We are forgetful. If something is valuable to you, you will find a way.
Get into the habit of giving something to everyone you meet – it may not be a gift or money, but a smile, a listening ear, a shoulder, a flower, or a compliment. These things cost you almost nothing at all.
Keep one hobby. Put all your focus into that hobby. Then the space that takes up in your home will be justified, and you will truly see if you were meant for that hobby by giving it your all.
Embrace one. One physical book, one magazine. Wherever practical, one is enough.
Simplify your food. Less condiments, less spices, less baked goods. More freshness, less waste, more time. In times of old, simple was enough. Simple is still enough.
There are no good or bad moments. Everything is how we choose to see it. Embrace every moment as if that is exactly what you chose. This is the only way to be compassionate.
Limit social media and media in general. At least one day a week, turn off your phone and computer. Social media can make you cynical and judgmental, opinionated instead of actively helping. It often causes arrogance, envying, and division. Action and kindness is more important than activism or dissent; you can’t be active if you only browse. There is a lot of provoking and envying and a lot of bragging and complaining – it often causes negativity and impatience in those consuming. We tend to become what we consume. Consume pure things often.
Patience is an essential virtue that is difficult to cultivate in the age of social media and online shopping, but it is just as important as honesty. Without patience, life becomes painful: When you wait, you will be in pain, and when you rush, you will hurt yourself. Accept what is.
Figure out patterns. When you are irritated at life or in a relationship, delve into the thoughts encouraging you to immerse yourself deeper into the negativity of the situation. Deal with the thoughts that cause you to constantly live in the future or past. Observe these thoughts like they aren’t you and they will fade away.
Observe your spending patterns. Identify every bill you have as a want or a need.
Track your time for three straight days. Every small activity. Is there anything that surprises you?
We are not our thoughts, preferences, or our personality; these feed our ego. These make us perceive things as bad as good, as people as less or better. These divide; they do not heal. We are our intentions; this is our soul.
Notice when you judge someone in your mind at the supermarket or online. Observe that thought and eliminate it. Most of what we think serves us not at all. We are not in control because we can’t stop the steady stream of thoughts that add nothing to our lives whatsoever; the more we recognize this, the more we are true to ourselves.
You can’t be open to new ideas if your mind is full. Creativity comes when you empty yourself. So meditation is beneficial to all, since our minds often take us over through the normal course of living.
Praying is not simply about asking or declaring. The point of prayer is gratitude. We cannot be grateful if we are not mindful of all that is happening throughout the day. When you stop struggling, you will notice everything is a blessing because everything has a purpose. So look for the silver line in all things sent your way, even the things that agitate or disturb you. There is something in everyone to be grateful for.
Praying, meditation, and mindfulness are keys to a minimalist mindset. These all eliminate ego and lead to contentment, which is the most valuable thing, because contentment stays.
Stop and just be. What is real becomes crystal clear in quiet and in solitude. Your true desires and purpose emerges when you remove all the external noise. Remove all that is non-essential regularly. When it is a habit, life is light.
Our purpose in life is to create. I believe we were made in God’s image. God is a creator. We are not meant to merely exist or survive. We were meant to be compassionate and to create. In this way, we can be a little mirror of a great light in a dreary world.