one of the things i appreciate about minimalism is that it’s a non-exclusive term. it’s not dogmatic. there are no leaders to meet. no manifestos you need to read, or groups you need to join. feel free to call yourself a minimalist if you want – no one will mind.
i believe that one of the reasons that this movement is so including and open is because of its diversity. there are as many minimalisms as there are minimalists. the term can basically be used to describe anyone striving for simplicity or spareness.
if you’re new to the concept and want it laid out a bit clearer, we could always try to categorise a few different types of minimalisms just to demonstrate. oh, and this is just my own humble attempt to organise the term, based on nothing else than my own thoughts.
aesthetic minimalism : appreciating simplicity in fashion, interior design, and other art forms. preferring cleanness over busy patterns. enjoying light, spare, open spaces over dark, colourful coziness. finding inner peace by resting the eyes on a calm surrounding.
consumption minimalism : the decision to only buy either what you need to make life easier, or only what you want very much to make life more enjoyable. a will to step out of today’s consumerism, where shopping is considered a road to happiness. never filling an emotional void with stuff or money.
ownership minimalism : a will to own as little as possible to be happy, healthy, and content. the sense of feeling more free the less things you own. giving away or throwing out everything you don’t need in order to free up time, money, and energy to do other things. feeling mobile and light by not owning things that weigh you down.
environmental minimalism : using as few of nature’s resources as possible to live well. choosing natural materials as clean, organic and unprocessed as possible, to stay clear of toxicity and unnatural elements. eating as low on the food chain as possible, usually choosing a more or less vegan lifestyle.
simplicity minimalism : striving to find the simplest possible way of life in general and everyday tasks in particular. not complicating things. getting high quality results with as little energy used as possible. finding beauty and value in simplicity.
lifestyle minimalism : asking yourself what you want your life to look like, and taking steps towards that life, removing all distractions. focussing on what really matters to you and letting go of the rest. a will to not work only for money, but for love of the job itself.
most minimalists probably recognise themselves in more than one of these categories, and some in all of them. either way, i would say there are a few common denominators for most minimalists – feeling drawn to simplicity, being pleased by visual cleanness, not wanting to buy unnecessary stuff, feeling held back by owning too much, believing that money and stuff can’t cause happiness.
so based on my definition of the term – what do you think, are you a minimalist ?
i definitively am.
love // jenny