Fuelled in part by worldwide financial turmoil, high levels of personal debt, increased global social awareness, or an increased awareness that there is more to life than possessions, minimalism is a significant personal commitment whose benefits are becoming increasingly desirable than ever before.
But before we get into how to dive into this lifestyle and its benefits, let us understand what it is first.
Minimalism or simplistic living is a concept involving decluttering or getting rid of things one may feel are not worth having. It involves determining what gives one the most value and removing the excess.
Essentially, the concept can be simply stated as ‘less is more. A minimalist makes time and room for things in their life that they love and gets rid of everything else that would distract them from them.
It could also involve getting rid of items one feels do not make one happy.
Those who practice this lifestyle say it enables one to live happily with what they have and also be more aware of what they already own.
Modern-day minimalism has been popularised by Japanese cleaning guru, Marie Kondo, whose books and style advocated abandoning anything that did not “spark joy”.
She, however, says that many people wrongly equate her tidying method with minimalism which is quite different. While minimalism advocates living with less, Kondo argues that her KonMari Method™ encourages living among items you truly cherish.
Kondo, the author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, has sold more than ten million copies and her book and her stance is rooted in Shinto tradition.
Author Greg McKeown in his book, Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, notes that minimalism is a habit of highly effective people. If this is so, then we could safely claim that the likes of billionaires Warren Buffet, Mark Zuckerberg, and Microsoft’s Bill Gates prove McKeown’s theory.
And since we are looking at creating wealth, could we get to do this by adopting minimalism?
Since minimalism is intentionally living with only what one absolutely needs, this reality ensures that a person is able to do more with their time and life. A classic example is having a few dishes which means less time washing and drying them while also not struggling to find room for them in your kitchen.
Again, being a minimalist allows one the freedom to spend less in terms of energy, time, and money on things that are not at the core of your life goals, which increases the opportunity to focus on other things, including creating wealth.
When you have fewer financial demands, it becomes easier to save which gets you on your wealth creation path.
What is noteworthy, though, is that adopting minimalism will not make you a millionaire overnight since to increase your income, then you have to work on that.
To borrow from the general understanding of minimalism, financial minimalism then becomes cutting out avoidable expenses and redirecting the resources elsewhere. This could be re-investing in items or services that will benefit you in the long term.
When followed through, financial minimalism could help you save money as a step towards your ultimate goal of achieving financial freedom. A valuable saying by Buffet is that you don’t save what’s left after spending but rather spending what’s left after saving. And now towards starting spending after saving…
The truth is that we are as rich as we feel.
As such, minimalism is also individual and not corporate. It is impossible to live as a minimalist borrowing on someone else’s ideals. It has to be driven by your individual needs.
Thus, find your financial balance by knowing where you are at and what is right and would work for you. Be OK with your choices and venture out.
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