Lots of people don’t understand how having less could make them happier.
They can’t comprehend how denying themselves that awesome new thing they want could actually increase their happiness over the long term. We’ve talked quite a bit about the “what” of minimalism–it occurred to me I haven’t mentioned much about the “why.” Let’s talk about how minimalism has impacted my life so far and why it is beneficial.
Whether it’s the occasional dusting or more detailed upkeep like washing, polishing or conditioning, each item we own requires some level of cleaning and maintenance. Less stuff means less stuff to clean and less time spent cleaning. More time to focus on what’s important!
Room for more
When the closet is so crammed with stuff, it’s easy to forget about that amazing dress that somehow got shoved to the back where it’s not visible and so never gets worn. When the excess gets cleared out, what remains are the things that bring joy and add value. You are surrounded by all of your favorite things.
In addition to the extra time from less cleaning, spending less time organizing and looking for things is also a pleasant side effect of minimalism. Less clothes means less time choosing an outfit, especially if you choose clothes that mostly go together. Perhaps less stuff can fit in a smaller space with a lower rent that might permit working less hours to get the bills paid or allow that extra money to be used for something pleasurable like a vacation.
Being very selective about what money should be spent on can result in lots of extra money. Not necessarily JUST from buying less, either. That expensive briefcase might last 20+ years, whereas the cheap one might only last a few years before it starts falling apart (and I’m not just saying that because I recently invested in a fairly expensive briefcase).
Not to say that expensive=high quality. I saw a nice looking briefcase selling for $700, but when I read the reviews, more than one reported that, the first time they used it, the hardware fell off. It’s important to do the research. The place I bought my briefcase from is known for quality. They stand behind their products, offering a lifetime warranty and I paid nowhere near $700. Investing in quality when possible can pay dividends.
More of what you want
One of the greatest things about my year of buying nothing experiment so far is that, because of my weekly updates, I am way more aware of where my money is being spent. Because I haven’t been spending my money on tangible, non-consumable things, more money is available for all the experiences I’ve had this month like the whiskey tasting we attended, transportation to the weddings we went to last month, the tea room I went to with my friend, etc. More money is also available for things that add value to my life, like upgrading my Google Drive storage so I can keep all my files in one place and replacing the battery in my watch when it died.