Making the Case for a Minimalist Lifestyle: Benefits of Living with Less
The minimalist lifestyle is all about living only with the things you need — the clothing, food, and possessions that are necessary for each day. Minimalism helps remove unhelpful distractions from your daily life, allowing you to concentrate on the things that truly matter.
Sometimes, living the minimalist lifestyle means selling an extra car or donating clothes you no longer need. In other cases, you might eat intentional meals or take the time to remove clutter from your living space.
Others looking to practice the minimalist lifestyle will often change their living arrangements. These housing changes can include:
- Converting to a barndominium;
- Downsizing your home;
- Living out of an RV while traveling;
- Renting out a room in your home you no longer need;
- Transitioning to a tiny house.
With the right approach, you can make any-sized space into a new home. Design your tiny house with all of the rooms and amenities you need to live a healthy, happy life, or experience the differences between barndominium and traditional home living.
Reference any number of the unique strategies below, all designed to help you benefit from the joys of minimalist living.
Easier to Clean
You’ll be surprised at how much easier your home is to clean once you adopt the minimalist lifestyle. With fewer possessions and less overall space, you’ll finish your regular cleaning routine in a fraction of the normal time.
Minimalism can help keep your home cleaner over time. After decluttering your home, you’re likely to find corners, small spaces, shelving, and cupboards collecting dust. It’s always a good idea to follow the decluttering process with a thorough home cleaning, to remove any dust, mildew, mold, cobwebs, or other unsightly signs of an untidy home.
The fewer items you have in your home, the easier it will be to clean. And with fewer items to clean regularly, you’ll leave less room for dirt and more time for other, more enjoyable activities.
Improve Your Mental Health
The minimalist lifestyle can also lead to improvements in your mental health. Your home environment can affect your relationships, fatigue, stress levels, overall anxiety, and other core mental health processes that have a large impact on daily life.
In short, there’s a correlation between your surroundings and your mental state. Minimizing your surroundings can have a positive impact on mental health, as an organized household is an important contributing factor for mental well-being.
If you’ve adopted the minimalist lifestyle, you know that it’s is all about experiencing happiness through detachment from items you don’t need. Fewer possessions means less time for objects and more time for the people and places that mean the most to you. Once you stop concerning yourself with life’s smaller details, minimalism can help guide you towards fulfillment.
Spending less money sounds easy in theory. However, impulse purchases and unnecessary spending can quickly pile up, adding to debt and compromising your monthly savings goals.
Spending less means saving more. Fortunately, there are many ways that you can save more money daily. Consider cooking more meals at home, eliminating unused streaming services, and purchasing used clothes.
Once you successfully reduce the amount of money you spend each month, you’ll experience several benefits. Credit card balances will be easier to pay off, and you’ll be able to save more for retirement, your mortgage, and any other recurring payments you might make.
Spending less money doesn’t mean you need to live a boring life. On the contrary, by saving money you’ll open yourself up to a variety of exciting opportunities. By saving for even a few months at a time, you’ll be able to finance a new vehicle, pursue a new hobby, or take a fun vacation with the family.
Better for the Environment
The average human generates nearly five pounds of waste per day. In 2018, this totaled nearly 294.4 million tons of municipal garbage, much of it harming the environment we live in. The minimalist lifestyle seeks to reduce our environmental impact, through prioritization of used items and eco-friendly habits.
When you practice minimalism, you’ll make a habit of only consuming the products you need. This decreases your demand for new items, cutting down on your environmental impact. Using fewer new products also reduces the overall amount of waste you generate.
The minimalist lifestyle also calls for more of an eco-friendly mindset. Minimalism calls for the use of fewer new items, and the appropriate recycling of items you no longer need. You’ll be able to cut down on your overall carbon footprint, whether you’re reusing your clothing or downsizing your entire home in the name of eco-friendly living.
You might also see an increase in your productivity as a result of adopting the minimalist lifestyle. With fewer items cluttering up your home, you’ll have a much easier time finding anything you’re looking for. In addition, household chores will be completed faster, as you’ll have fewer dishes to rinse, counters to clean, and floors to mop.
With fewer items in your home, you’ll also have fewer distractions when it comes time to get things done. Especially if you live at home, the potential for distraction by your bed, television, or the items in your refrigerator can quickly compromise productivity. After you begin living the minimalist lifestyle, you’ll have fewer distractions to get between you and a job well done.
Quality Over Quantity
The minimalist lifestyle will allow you to remain disciplined in saving money. When it comes time to spend that money on something you need, you’ll have enough money saved to purchase a quality item that will last.
Rather than spend your money on a replaceable, temporary solution that won’t last, those living the minimalist lifestyle can spend money on items with a long lifespan. Whether this means buying a well-built car or a quality pair of shoes, you’ll have the time and the financial means to prioritize quality over quantity.
Minimalism is more than a beneficial lifestyle move — it’s also a trend. The minimalist lifestyle is catching on among individuals of all ages who are looking to reduce their environmental impact, declutter their homes, and find fulfillment in life’s simple joys.
In addition, many find that the minimalist lifestyle is visually appealing. When you adopt the minimalist approach to life, you’ll be able to purchase quality, attractive items after saving your money appropriately. This lifestyle choice also leaves you more time for things that matter in your life, with less time spent caring for unwanted, unnecessary items.
More Room for the Important Things
The minimalist lifestyle helps you strike the appropriate balance between your possessions and your quality of life. You don’t necessarily need to donate or get rid of everything you own; rather, you’re only retaining the items in your life that are necessary and positively contribute to your well-being.
If you want to retain some of your possessions but have no room for them in your home, consider relocating them to a storage unit. If you’re downsizing your home, you can migrate your items to a carport or other steel structure on your property for safekeeping.
Cons to Minimalist Living
There are a few drawbacks to living a minimalist lifestyle. Living with fewer items means you’ll need to pick and choose the possessions you need in your home. You’ll have fewer options in your wardrobe, and you’ll typically consume simpler meals.
In addition, saving more money means you’ll have less to spend on luxury items and discretionary purchases. Minimalist living might also require that you reuse items — including clothing, dishware, and other common household objects — more than you purchase new ones. You’ll need to maintain more of a disciplined mindset, to experience the joys of detachment and freedom that come with living the minimalist lifestyle.