What is Minimalism?

Minimalism is a focus on living with less or living with that which adds value.

At Inbreathe, we take our definition of minimalism one step further. That is, applying minimalism to our internal world, not just our physical environment, by consciously focusing only on those feelings and thoughts that add value to our lives and minimising the less positive thoughts, feelings and actions. It’s a state of mind, not a set of rules.

In a pure form its to make way for having time to do things that brings more value and a more authentic existence, based on creating experiences and not collecting things.

 

Here are some more definitions:

According to Becoming Minimalist

I am intentionally trying to live with only the things I really need.

MINIMALISM IS INTENTIONALITY.

It is marked by clarity, purpose, and intentionality. At its core, minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it. It is a life that forces intentionality. And as a result, it forces improvements in almost all aspects of your life.

MINIMALISM IS FREEDOM FROM THE PASSION TO POSSESS.

Modern culture has bought into the lie that the good life is found in accumulating things—in possessing as much as possible.

Minimalism brings freedom from the all-consuming passion to possess. It steps off the treadmill of consumerism and dares to seek happiness elsewhere. It values relationships, experiences, and soul-care. And in doing so, it finds life.

MINIMALISM IS FREEDOM FROM MODERN MANIA.

Our world lives at a feverish pace. We are too hurried, too rushed, and too stressed. We work long, passionate hours to pay the bills, but fall deeper into debt. We rush from one activity to another—even multitasking along the way—but never seem to get everything done. We remain in constant connection with others through our cell phones, but true life-changing relationships continue to elude us.

Minimalism slows down life and frees us from this modern hysteria to live faster. It finds freedom to disengage. It seeks to keep only the essentials. It seeks to remove the frivolous and keep the significant. And in doing so, it values the intentional endeavours that add value to life.

MINIMALISM IS FREEDOM FROM DUPLICITY.

Although nobody intentionally chooses it, most people live in duplicity. They live one life around their family, one life around their co-workers, and another life around their neighbours. The lifestyle they have chosen requires them to portray a certain external image dependent upon their circumstances.

On the other hand, a simple life is united and consistent. It has learned a lifestyle that is completely transferable no matter the situation. It is the same life on Friday evening as it is on Sunday morning… as it is on Monday morning. It is reliable, dependable and unfluctuating. It works in all circumstances.

MINIMALISM IS NOT EXTERNAL, BUT INTERNAL.

Minimalism is always a matter of the heart. After the external clutter has been removed, minimalism has the space to

address the deepest heart issues that impact our relationships and life.

In summary:

It is marked by clarity, purpose, and intentionality. At its core, minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it. It is a life that forces intentionality. And as a result, it forces improvements in almost all aspects of your life.

Being a minimalist means you value yourself more than material things. It means making decisions based on what you need instead of getting everything you want. It does not mean the things you buy are cheap.

 

Or according to The Minimalists, minimalism can assist you in finding freedom…

Minimalism is a tool to rid yourself of life’s excess in favor of focusing on what’s important—so you can find happiness, fulfillment, and freedom.

Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.

That doesn’t mean there’s anything inherently wrong with owning material possessions. Today’s problem seems to be the meaning we assign to our stuff: we tend to give too much meaning to our things, often forsaking our health, our relationships, our passions, our personal growth, and our desire to contribute beyond ourselves. Want to own a car or a house? Great, have at it! Want to raise a family and have a career? If these things are important to you, then that’s wonderful. Minimalism simply allows you to make these decisions more consciously, more deliberately.

 

Note: Minimalism doesn’t have a set of rules that everyone must follow. It also isn’t for everyone. It is just another tool that may help in assisting with optimizing your life and bringing awareness to the value or less value your everyday actions and behaviours (buying habits) create for a better socially conscious lifestyle.

Like with most things- it’s the ‘why’ you are doing it. In a pure form its to make way for having time to do things that brings more value and a more authentic existence, based on creating experiences and not collecting things.