Do you come home every night to a room full of clutter?
Do you find yourself unable to move through your stuff?
Does It take you forever to rummage through your belongings looking for missing items?
Then, it might be time to simplify your life.
What is minimalism?
It is a style or technique (as in music, literature, or design) that is characterized by extreme sparseness and simplicity. [Source]
This simple way of living is usually seen in Japanese culture which promotes a lifestyle that is focused on making use of the basic necessities in life.
The idea is to celebrate space in a home and to consider it an integral part in living.
“This is called amor vacuii … a love of emptiness, because that’s what fuels the cultural concept known as Ma.
Ma (pronounced "maah") is a celebration of not things, but the space between them. It is about negative space, voids, emptiness. And it is relished in everything from interiors, architecture and garden design to music, flower arrangement and poetry. And actually beyond; it can be found in most aspects of Japanese life.” [Source]
It’s such a different concept compared to a Filipino’s perspective which celebrates space as an opportunity for adornment or to display collections, achievements, and memorabilia.
Is it Beneficial For You?
Certainly, it’s not for everyone.
There are those who feel extreme emptiness when there a lack of clutter and well, furniture and items for that matter.
However, it does have an advantageous psychological effect.
- It gives you a sense of freedom.
Your environment has an effect on your inner disposition. Have you noticed why hotels emit such a calming and relaxing feeling? You’ve probably observed how well laid out their rooms are, with minimal furnishings that are strategically placed in a clean and symmetrical fashion. Or how about the colors that they use, have you wondered why their interiors are mostly painted in neutral colors?
These all contribute to the feeling that they wish to evoke. Different colors elicit certain emotional triggers that you may not be conscious of. Meanwhile, cleanliness and symmetry signal your mind to relax because everything is in order.
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- It helps you prioritize.
Have you ever tried to look for an item, couldn’t find it so you bought a new one but only to find out days after that it was hidden in one of your drawers?
Reducing clutter allows you to keep things that you constantly use and therefore help you save money and find things easily.
This also tells your brain that you only keep items that are important and useful therefore discouraging impulse buying.
- It gives you peace of mind.
When you are not attached to material possessions then you can move freely without having to worry about items being stolen, losing value or going out of style.
You worry less about trivial things (pun intended) and you focus more on intangible factors like happiness, love, and experiences.
How Can You Apply Minimalism At Home?
- Throw or Donate unused items
“One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.”
- Choose your furniture wisely
Go for custom-made furniture that maximizes space by having built-in storage.
- Choose sturdy sheets
It’s okay to pay for a premium on bed sheet sets that will last you a long time and more importantly, will be good for your family.
- Be Responsible
Control impulse purchases and buy only what you need. Before buying anything, ask yourself “Do I really need this?”
Try these tips and see great changes in your life, in your mood, in your finances, and in your general well-being.
“ Where there is clutter, even valuable things lose their value. Where there is too much, nothing stands out.
A total lack of clutter is like a holder within which things can exist, stand out and have meaning.
It is the emptiness full of possibilities, like a promise yet to be fulfilled.” [source]