Minimalism, Essentialism, More-ism

Which is the Greatest of These - Minimalism, More-ism, or Essentialism?

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I've been on a journey towards on minimalism for quite some time.  Years before Marie Kondo was a verb, a friend brought me a copy of her book from a local used book store while visiting us in Colorado.  I soaked that little book in! 

Then, I purged. I still purge...often!  Because, there's a voice in my mind that plays on repeat, telling me to always be ready and never hold too tightly. I love the voice some days and hate it others. I don't have many attachments to things, I'm always getting rid of stuff, and I'm literally always "ready" to pick up and go.  Where to exactly, I'm not quite sure, but when that directive comes, I'll be ready. 

What I'm learning these days, however, is that perhaps I have my definition of minimalism all wrong.  What if I've missed a handful of the essentials at the expense of minimizing and decluttering? Perhaps, in my focus on reducing things and living in a state of uproot-readiness, I've left out some of the essential things.  

What if instead of focusing on less, I focused on more - more space for essential moments, meaningful conversations, greater presence, and adventure?  Perhaps making this the essence of what I'm working towards would help me feel less unsettled and more fulfilled.  Maybe it would for you, too.

Our culture tells us that more-ism should be our focus. Our messy lives tell us the minimalism is the key, and the counter-culture lifestyle tells us that essentialism is what matters. Regardless of your pursuits, here are five questions you should be asking yourself:

The 5 Questions

  1. What do I really need?
  2. Is what I want something that will actually help me thrive?
  3. What am I trying to simplify or minimize that could actually be enhancing the lives of those around me?
  4. When I look back on my life, what I will I say truly mattered?
  5. How can I create more space for meaning in my life?

Whether you're pursuing more, less, or greater essentials in your life shouldn't be the point.  It should, instead, be the means to creating a life focused on meaning, meaningful pursuits, and a life worth thriving for.  If you can create that for others, too, it's a bonus!

 

*For more on this topic, check out the podcast episode with Jen Brazeal of The Unhurried Life Podcast. 

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