5 Ways Minimalism has Affected my Thinking

37 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 3 bags

I have always been really sceptical of people making powerful claims that minimising your things will make you a better, happier person. However, I do feel that there has definitely been an adjustment in my state of mind since I started my minimalist journey. Here are some of the biggest changes I’ve noticed over the last year.

  1. I’ve become a more mindful shopper. Getting rid of so many things has made me much more careful about what I purchase for my home and wardrobe. I’ve spoken before about shopping becoming a hobby. Shopping can be an enjoyable activity in itself, and in the past I would often purchase things just to get a small lift in my day. I now have a number of shopping rules that help me stay focused on getting only what I feel I need, and ignoring all the delicious distractions along the way. I’m hoping that my current shopping behaviour will help me sustain a minimal lifestyle over time.
  2. I’ve realised that things take up time. The process of minimising has made me realise that all our belongings take up time and effort in some way. When we purchase, we spend time buying, cleaning and maintaining things. If we move, we spend time organising, packing, moving, unpacking and organising again. If we chose to declutter, we spend time sorting, travelling to charity or consignment stores or preparing listings for Ebay. Of course we all need some things, and even with more mindful shopping habits, energy is still spent acquiring things. However, I believe that having less stuff, and committing to buying only useful items of good quality will save time in the long run.
  3. I’ve shown more care with money. Removing things from my life has reminded me of the value of money. I’ve mentioned before that I started monitoring how much I spent on clothing over the last few years. The figures only started to disturb me when I ended up getting rid of most of those items. I recovered some of the costs on Ebay and at local consignment stores, but it’s a fraction of what I spent. Now I think not twice, but three times or more, about any purchase I make.
  4. I’ve felt an adjustment in my values. Unexpectedly, the minimising process has brought me in tune with my authentic values. There were many years in my youth where I didn’t buy a lot because I didn’t feel I needed to. I was environmentally aware and cared a lot about sustainability, which made me an even more mindful shopper. A combination of work commitments, financial security and general life happenings eroded that way of thinking over the most recent quarter of my life. It feels good to find myself aligning with those thought patterns again.
  5. I have begun to apply minimalism to emotional aspects of life. In the same way that I have discarded physical clutter, I’ve felt a desire to remove emotional clutter. I am working on minimising negative thinking patterns, habits, and words.

While minimalism has not transformed me into a brand new person, I have definitely felt clarity, peace and comfort in my life recently. What can minimalism do for your way of thinking?


31 thoughts on “5 Ways Minimalism has Affected my Thinking

  1. Completely agree! Although I have only begun my minimalistic journey, I find myself becoming more and more aware of my own negative thoughts and patters. The more mindful I become about stuff, the better I am about curating my own experience of life

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Minimalism makes it way easier to get dressed in the morning! It’s been fun having a smaller wardrobe, but I’m trying not to get too caught up in being too strict with the exact numbers, and just follow the bigger concept of being a bit more conscious of what I add to it.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I’m probably what you might describe as being a maximalist 🙂 and for that very reason, I’ve begun a (very slow) process at attempting to infuse some measure of minimalisation into my life. More from an emotional perspective, if I’m to be completely honest. There’s a reason why it’s called “emotional baggage” and the load is starting to take its weight on me. Thank you for sharing this insight, it’s posts such as yours that make for wonderful reading xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Having fewer things means I don’t need to take so much time making decisions. I used to buy heaps of things at the supermarket because they looked good and when meal time came around I would stand in front of my fridge for a long time wondering what I should eat. These days I’m buying more basic foods and repeating recipes. It saves me time staring at the contents of the fridge and I’m getting better at cooking. It’ll be a while before my cupboards and fridge are fully minimalised but I’m getting there.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Lovely post – thank you! For me, minimalism opens a sense of space – and spaciousness – in my day, mind, creativity at work, and interactions with others. My approach to “stuff” absolutely affects my thinking – and, well, everything!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. YES to all of the above! Starting our minimalism journey as newlyweds is helping us re-evaluate what is truly important in our lives at a critical moment. We are setting our values toward more of the “good stuff” of life, instead of the material items and it’s bringing us closer everyday! Thanks for sharing your experience. It’s wonderful to hear.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Minimalism definitely empowers you to spend more time loving people, rather than things. Thanks for sharing! My favorite take away is this, “In the same way that I have discarded physical clutter, I’ve felt a desire to remove emotional clutter. I am working on minimising negative thinking patterns, habits, and words.” Great point!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I saw you liked my post taking an inventory of all my clothes so I came to check out your blog. I love it 🙂 “Things take up time” was very insightful, this might explain why I feel daunted by all the stuff I own. I wish there was a way to minimise all my beauty products… So many things bought which didn’t work out or have hardly been used and I have no idea what to do with them. Love your blog X

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Your blog has really given me reason to stop and think about all my “stuff” and I was just getting ready to order a new pair of boots too! I have been trying to pare down for a while now-donating, giving things to friends, having yard sales but I still have so many things that I never use.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Reblogged this on The Fire and commented:
    This one should be a guideline for all the folks out there who don’t believe in filling their lives with “things”. Reduse, reuse, and recycle so we can all live on this planet comfortably.

    Liked by 1 person

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