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Infographic by CustomMade
“My greatest skill in life has been to want but little.”
– Henry David Thoreau, Walden
In today’s world, the average individual is likely to have more stuff than at any previous time in history. It can be difficult, in a society focused on conspicuous consumption, to follow the siren song of simplicity. But a growing movement known as minimalism shows us that living well with less isn’t just possible—it can be highly rewarding.
Why Go Minimalist?
- Your life will become more simple and streamlined. For many minimalists, that’s the whole point: to stop being driven by stress, overcommitment, the urge to continuously “upgrade” your life and possessions, et cetera.
- Saving money is another positive consequence of minimalism, particularly in the wake of the economic downturn. When you cut down on unnecessary shopping, commit to your savings account and start paying fewer bills, your financial situation is bound to improve.
- Another common reason to go minimalist is that it’s easier to be environmentally and socially responsible. When you consume less, you also create less waste and significantly reduce your impact on the environment. That may mean spending more for a durable, quality item that was produced sustainably and locally; but if you don’t need to buy that item again for years or even decades, it’s probably worth the investment.
- Finally, minimalists often take full advantage of the collaborative economy and new work models, made possible through the Internet-driven culture shift. Owning fewer possessions (that often includes a car) means sharing, renting, and co-owning everything from tools to transport and clothes.
Minimalism is, by definition, life altering. Don’t expect to make the shift overnight. You’re more likely to make gradual progress in a variety of ways—starting right now. There’s no ideal or perfect way to do it; minimalism is more an attitude adjustment than a code of behavior.
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