“Minimalism”, “minimalist” or “simplicity” are very common words these days. Some of use embrace them for trend, some for need. As you can see from the look of my blog I am kinda hooked on minimalism. There are two reasons I got into it: George Carlin on “Stuff” and Leo Barbuta’s ZenHabits.net. Even though I discovered both quite late in my life, they sure made an impression on me.
My principles derived from minimalism and from my two sources of inspiration:
1. If you don’t need it, don’t buy it. We all know that the things we buy are divided into two ~categories: needs and wants. But we also know very well that if we want something, we are pretty good at making it a need. “I really need to buy this fancy equipment to get in shape.” No, all you need to do is start running. It’s free. For sure you should buy also things that you want, but just be honest about it.
2. Don’t buy anything on an impulse. You see a cool pair of shoes and you know you got to have it. Unless you really… REALLY needed it, don’t buy just yet. Keep it in mind and leave it “bake” for few days/weeks. If next time you pass by that store feel the same urge to get it, you probably should go for it.
3. Buy to replace. Does it happen to you to buy a shirt every now and then, but not even realize that now you have way too many shirts? Some of them you haven’t worn for a loooong time. After a period of time, for every new shirt you buy, you have to give one away. If you can’t do that because you like all of them, maybe you don’t need another shirt.
4. Let go of stuff. As years go by we tend to collect a lot of things that we don’t really need. Things that fill closets, attics, boxes or drawers. Things that we hold on “just in case we need it”, but never do. I say throw it away or give it charity. Try to make a list of things you would take with you in case a disaster happens. Most probably your nose hair trimmer is not on the list.
5. Forget about specialized utensils. I wouldn’t have put this on a list if it wasn’t for a recent situation. When I moved to Bratislava I had to choose carefully the things I would take with me or the things I would buy here. So I started to go for things with multiple utilities. I can’t go and buy a fondue set if I would use it once or twice a year. In this case it might be better to have fondue at a restaurant. Or, why go for a garlic crusher or can opener since I get the same result using knife?
The list could go on but I just wanted to focus on the most important things. Just to give you an example on how much I’m into this stuff. Few days ago I attended a concert of Andreya Triana. After the concert we were lucky enough to have her sign autographes. I could have gotten a signed CD from her, but I didn’t. I considered it for a while, but I didn’t go for it. Why? Becase: a) I don’t listen to CDs anyway, b) all the autographes I got from artists in the past are… gone, c) there are alternatives. My alternative was to talk to her for a moment and get a picture.