What comes to your mind when you hear the word minimalism? Do you envision people living bare-bones, owning zero possessions, receiving little satisfaction from the trinkets and gadgets they neglect to acquire? Or perhaps, do you imagine those that adopt a minimalist lifestyle abolish those that decide to indulge in life's material pleasures, claiming that they are filled with greed and selfishness?
Obviously, the above examples are polar opposites, but chances are your view falls somewhere in between. At first when I stumbled across this concept, my opinion was there's no way I could just get rid of everything I own. Fortunately, you don't have to abandon your nearest and dearest possessions and memorabilia in pursuit of a simpler and richer life.
Minimalism is about simplification. Ridding yourself of the surplus you don't need, and in some cases don't even want. When we pursue the acquisition of material objects, we are rewarded with a heightened sense of enjoyment. Immediately engaged, we begin to grow accustomed to the satisfaction, albeit short-lived, provided by the so-called 'novelty factor' of said materials. In other words, when we buy a new toy, or sneakers, or other gizmos and gadgets, these will be fun and exciting until the newest version makes an appearance.
Coupled with that, we are consistently bombarded with advertisements, commercials, and the like; everything we are exposed to influences us in one way or another. When you turn on the television, what do you see? Maybe you just see a cool car or neat workout equipment. However, the images depicted are completely absurd, subconsciously implanting insecurities like a seed in your mind. Via consistent exposure, and measuring your worth and value against unrealistic expectations, this small seed blossoms into one ugly, disgusting thing. Always trying to keep up with the latest trend or fad is a recipe for failure.
Ridding yourself of other duties and obligations to spend time on what matters most is the takeaway here. Our time on this planet is limited, and we refuse to subscribe to the belief that life's grandeurs encompass acquiring useless objects that will deteriorate over time; rather, using our resources to provide experience, which is invaluable.