Brief Thoughts On Minimalism

Minimalism is relative.

What it takes to be a minimalist writer is much less than what it takes to me a minimalist surgeon. A writer needs a pen and paper, the surgeon requires many more tools. So minimalism isn't about the number of things required but about the idea: "what I need and nothing more."

Clutter slows things down, it muddies the water, it creates burden. I don't like being slowed down, I don't like muddy water, and I don't like being unnecessarily burdened. I want the freedom to act, buoyed by the requisite tools, so I can accomplish the goals at hand.

This is my ideal situation. Only the things I need and nothing more.

Minimalism isn't static.

People change, circumstances change, and therefore what is minimal changes as well. My wife and I just had our first child and with that child comes a sweeping change to our lives that requires what is minimal to drastically change. Where there were never diapers and wipes and pacifiers and bottles and cribs and cute baby clothes, there are now all of those things. I'm ok with those things though because I love my child and I love my wife and a baby requires those things to both be happy and keep Mom and Dad sane.

Minimalism isn't the Gospel

Minimalism won't save you, but it might help you sleep better at night. Consider all of stuff that you have and how much of it is truly necessary. I'm talking about the basics here: shelter, food, clothes...everything else is a bit of a luxury is it not?

I'm not asking you, or telling you, to live without luxury; you get to make your own decisions. What I am asking you, however, is, "Do you really need all of that stuff?" What purpose does it serve in your life? What benefit does it provide to you? What burden? What stress?

Final Thoughts

I don't know why Minimalism has been on my mind recently but it has and it hasn't gone away, hence this blog post. What I do know is that the concept of minimalism is very attractive to me and trying to figure out how it influences my life is an interesting endeavor. I'll continue to mull over these thoughts myself but I would enjoy hearing your thoughts on this subject. Thinking in a vacuum can only get you so far.

Cam Brennan