Have no fear, aspiring minimalist. Switching to a minimal lifestyle doesn’t have to be as drastic as ridding yourself of all of your worldly possessions.
Minimalism can mean cutting out excess–being conscious of what we consume, what we waste, what we spend our time on–and focusing on the basic necessities. With any lifestyle change, taking the first step is the most important part. Here are 3 small steps any aspiring minimalist can take to help you on your way to reduce the physical baggage and gain some mental clarity:
1. Take inventory
It’s easy to lose track of how much stuff we collect or consume over the years. Taking the time to really make note of all the things you own might show you have much more than you need. Chances are most of the things that you’ve grown attached to are just that–things.
Once you’ve taken inventory, it’s time to come clean. De-cluttering is an important part of a minimal lifestyle because this where you get to see the transformation unfold. This may also be the most challenging part for some people since it involves letting things go. So, start small–get rid of one item you know serves absolutely no purpose then work your way up to two. It’s important to remember that a minimal lifestyle takes time, so be patient with the process.
3. Be active
This is where the steps turn into habits and the life choices start to become a lifestyle. Start recycling or recycle more and consider a yard waste bin instead of throwing food scraps in the trash. Make donating clothes you haven’t worn in years a yearly routine. Have a collection of shoes that look similar, but you’re convinced are different? Try narrowing your collection down to only keeping one or two pairs. The actions you take every day with these basic steps in mind will help build a sustainable minimal lifestyle.
Everyone may have their own subjective view on what a minimal life should look like, but the concept should remain the same: less is best.