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Thread: What has been the hardest part about minimalism for you?

  1. #1
    klunick
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    What has been the hardest part about minimalism for you?

    Even though I always considered myself a minimalist because I don't need a lot of stuff around me, I kept things because I worried about going so far that my house would look sterile.

    I cleared off a bunch of stuff from the fridge door once and my oldest made a comment that now it made the kitchen look like nobody lives here. I ended up putting back a few of the magnets to appease him.

    My biggest struggle is losing the homey feeling and the house looking empty. What has been your biggest struggles?

  2. #2
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    I do not equate minimalism with simple living, so the only hard part for me personally is when people insist they are the same.

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    I don't find my level of minimalism hard at all. Enough to enjoy and not stuff that annoys. Your kid may be right. Put some things back to warm it up.

  4. #4
    klunick
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gardnr View Post
    I don't find my level of minimalism hard at all. Enough to enjoy and not stuff that annoys. Your kid may be right. Put some things back to warm it up.
    That is the thing. We do still have plenty of stuff. House in no way look bare. People have even commented on how nice our house is decorated and that is very homey. I literally took off photos of our boys that were up on the fridge for at least 10 years. Took off some of those restaurant magnets for places that we don't eat at or don't even exist any longer. Just stuff that accumulated and served no purpose. I guess he was just so used to it that it looked bare without it.

  5. #5
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    I think minimalism is nothing more than "life edited." I was never a minimalist, but I felt myself swallowed up by stuff that had had its day--it no longer served its purpose but was occupying space in my garage, my closets, my basement, and my head.

    So I did my Grand Purge last spring in order to move to a much smaller house, so I'm kind of a minimalist now, because I LOVE my pared down life. However, I'm not a decor minimalist, really. I love lots of wall art, and I still display the pottery my kids made me when they were 7 years old, and I DEFINITELY like to see personality in people's homes. I HATE watching HGTV these days because these cookie-cutter, trendy decor designers houses whitewash their clients' lives right out. Then, they have a token personal item--one framed picture, meant for the cameras to be able to get a teary-eyed response from the clients who are really just probably shedding tears of "I want my old lived-in house back!"

    I'm not a document minimalist. I have a lot of old letters and pictures and I made each kid a scrapbook of their letters of commendation from soccer coaches and bosses and things. I love history, and it's hard to be a historian and a minimalist at the same time.

    So I don't think you need to strip your house bare to be a minimalist. You just have to be sensitive to when your clutter meter tilts too far for your own personal values and comfort level.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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  6. #6
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tybee View Post
    I do not equate minimalism with simple living, so the only hard part for me personally is when people insist they are the same.
    Exactly.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Teacher Terry's Avatar
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    If a home is too sparse it feels uncomfortable to me. But most people have the opposite problem. I have found it more enjoyable to have less stuff and cleaning is certainly faster. I keep the things that have meaning.

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    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tybee View Post
    I do not equate minimalism with simple living, so the only hard part for me personally is when people insist they are the same.
    I third this. Well, sort of. Minimalism can be an aspect of living simply. But not all people who live simply are minimalists.
    Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome. - Booker T. Washington

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    The hardest part for me - right now - is getting to the point where I am comfortable with the "stuff" around me. I don't live alone, so I have to deal with other people's "stuff" and that doesn't thrill me. But, I still have to deal with my own things, so who knows what lies ahead.
    Last edited by happystuff; 1-21-20 at 7:38am.
    To give pleasure to a single heart by a single act is better than a thousand heads bowing in prayer." Mahatma Gandhi

    Be nice whenever possible. It's always possible. - Dalai Lama

  10. #10
    Senior Member Rogar's Avatar
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    I don't know where I fall by definition, but when I was saving for my FI or early retirement I lived on a relatively stark budget. I never felt deprived at all, but did not fit in with the proverbial Jones lifestyle and had various forms of social ostracism and in the least was considered a little odd by many. I had some payback when I retired years earlier than most. I've been fortunate to have a few similar thinking friends.

    And to be honest, I've had at least a little consolation by being a member of these forums. Much of my inspiration came from the book, Your Money or Your Life. I don't know if that philosophy fits best with minimalism or simple living, or both. Back in the day the book seemed like the roots of the forum some time ago. I think the focus has drifted or expanded since then and is not so much the same now.

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