The Millennial Minimalist: 7 Steps to Clarity

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I recently watched a Netflix film titled Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things and immediately sent several texts encouraging friends and family to check it out too. By nature, I am an extremely passionate person. So I wouldn’t be surprised if those texts were met with a “Here Chris goes again with her new grand idea *chuckles* ”. I wouldn’t blame them either; I find inspiration in anything dealing with self-awareness. But, that doesn’t negate the fact that Minimalism is a game-changing and well-crafted doc that’s not only worth watching, but also worth living. For those of you unfamiliar with the concept, minimalism, simply put, is deciding to intentionally live with the items you truly need only. It is removing all clutter and excess and breaking free of materialism.

Here are my 7 takeaways from Minimalism — realized benefits that inspired me to adopt the minimalist lifestyle…

  1. The Art of Detachment: In Buddhist practice, the ability to not become attached to people, places, things or experiences is a highly regarded spiritual teaching. This allows for an individual to become more mindful and self aware.Only attaining items that are needed and releasing things that no longer serve a purpose creates space for greater appreciation for what is.

  2. Find Inner Peace: Our external world is merely a representation of our internal environment. If we are cluttered and disorganized in our homes, that is indicative of housed emotional or mental stress. Work backwards to help inspire an awakened sense of calm and clarity within. Donate the extra furniture, clothing, and magazines and allow for a flow of peace.

  3. Promote Air + Energy Flow: One of my pet peeves is that stuffy feeling of an overly crowded room or noticing dust on outdated and unused items in a home. Do your lungs a favor and create space for air and energy to flow.If you’re really interested in the energy flow of a room, check out resources that promote feng shui. Here’s my favorite

  4. Forgiveness: When donating or discarding our possessions, we often suffer a sense of guilt.We feel we are tied to the things we own. Maybe they were gifts or maybe you’re saving things for that “what if” moment. Either way, releasing what is no longer relevant or necessary is a form of healing. Forgive yourself for accumulating so much crap and be compassionate with you for letting go.

  5. Empowerment Effect: Disconnecting from social conditioning is truly empowering. A major reason why we accumulate so much is because we have an overwhelming amount of messages telling us that more is better. Unfortunately, Capitalism is king in the US. Instead of sheepily buying into a mindless purchase pattern, be empowered enough to know what a need is versus a want or an impulse buy.

  6. Flexibility: Living light leaves the flexibility to get up and go as you see fit. If you decide to relocate, you can feel free to pack easier and faster. This habit of living minimalistically will flow into other areas of your life. When traveling for holiday, your luggage will ultimately become less of a burden too.

  7. Creativity Flows: Living with less allows you to get creative. Repurpose a mirror as a tabletop or exchange hangers and implement KonMari folding. Instead of purchasing a new dress for an event, borrow a gown from a friend.Reconnect with your sense of resourcefulness!