No More, no Less
Instead of viewing minimalism as the minimal amount that’s tolerable, view it as having the perfect amount of something and making more room for what really matters. No more, no less.
“Think of what you have rather than of what you lack. Of the things you have, select the best and then reflect how eagerly you would have sought them if you did not have them.” – Marcus Aurelius (121-180)
There is an ideal amount for everything in your life, and the number that you need can vary dramatically from someone else.
What is the perfect amount of everything in your life?
What is the main focus in your life?
When you know the purpose of your life, it’s a lot easier to determine what you need and don’t need.
An artist might work better out in the country in a simple home but the owner of a huge company might need a large home in an urban setting for entertaining.
What do you actually need and what do you want?
There are way fewer things you actually need than things you want. Minimalism is about having all the things you need but putting the brakes on accumulating a lot of things you simply want.
How does it cost you to have more?
Having more than you need is expensive in that items and obligations either help you to live your life more fully, or they detract from your ability to live your life at the highest level.
Consider your time valuable. Carrying excess baggage slows you down. Clutter limits your ability to concentrate and is weighing on your mind.
You can accomplish more.
Most of the things you desire get in the way of accomplishing your goals. For example, if your purpose is to create a software company, owning a race horse doesn’t help you to accomplish that. It gets in your way by taking your time, attention, and financial resources.
Minimalism speeds up your success.
When you’re less distracted and have fewer things cluttering your life, you can accomplish more each day. Success comes faster and easier.
What is the perfect amount?
The idea of minimalism doesn’t appeal to a lot of people, because they think they have to limit themselves to one bowl, one spoon, sit on the floor, and stare out the window for entertainment. This is unnecessary.
A more reasonable view of minimalism is pursuing the perfect amount of something. It’s not about making do with the minimum you can tolerate but avoiding having more than you need. The end result is more time, peace, money, and success.
It means that we are content and grateful, as we should be, with ourselves and what we have. To be anxious for more or to envy someone else’s life or possessions is self-defeating. We are then in a constant state of frustration, always hoping and waiting for more happiness.
There is much to appreciate in the here and now. There is life itself with friends, family, and everything that is naturally before us. We just have to look around and appreciate it. Perhaps it is time to make a list of all the good things we have to be grateful for.
Although you’ll never need to give up all your worldly belongings, keep renewing your space; expect something new and wonderful to show up to replace the old, even if it’s just more space instead of clutter.
So, what is important? To have enough, not more.