Today we have a trio of posts that make for an interesting blog post title when combined. The posts we are sharing today come from the big three of minimalism – Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist, Leo Babauta of Zen Habits, and Courtney Carver of Be More With Less. I suspect many of you are already following these blogs. In any given week, each of these blogs has some good posts, but this week I think they all shared some really great insights, so I want to feature them all here, together, in a minimalism trifecta.
First up is Joshua Becker with “You’re the Problem”, or as he more kindly words it – Parents, Stop Getting Mad at Your Kids for Wanting Stuff at Target
If you have ever dealt with a kid fussing about buying toys or candy while you are out shopping, then this one is for you. (Actually, it’s still for you even if you don’t have kids.) Kids want stuff. It’s natural for anyone to want fun things to play with. In order to curb this reaction in kids, we help them understand the value of items, help them distinguish between wants and needs, and share our thoughts on short term versus long term satisfaction. Even though we do all that, they still fuss about buying something. And here is where the “aha” moment comes in. What are you doing at that store in the first place? Do you really need to be there? Do you really need whatever it is you are buying, or is it a want, a short term satisfier, or something that brings little value to your life?
I know there are times you need to go to the store – groceries, household items, etc. But there are also times you don’t need to go to the store, and it’s those times that you may want to opt out.
Which segues into our next article by Leo Babauta – Opt Out: A Simplicity Manifesto
Leo kicks off this article by saying, “Our lives become filled, even controlled, by the things we think we need to do.”
Things like: Facebook, Instagram, watching commercials, shopping, allowing every store to add you to their email lists, watching hours of TV, reading too much online. The list is endless. Now is a great time to opt out of some or all of these things. If you aren’t ready to go cold turkey on everything, then pick one or two items and stop doing them for a while.
Experimentation is key here, conduct your own Opt Out experiment. Pick something that is taking up your time and not really adding any value, and stop doing it. Once you stop, you may be surprised at how much free time you have. Then take that free time and do something creative, play, visit friends, or do nothing at all and enjoy pause.
After opting out, you are likely to find something appear in more abundance – Love.
Courtney Carver tells us Minimalism is Nothing But Love
When you remove all the excess stuff, commitments, distractions, and move towards a minimalist lifestyle, you have more room for love. Based on my own experiences, I completely agree with this assessment. This statement in her own words summarizes the concept nicely.
Minimalism has invited me to be discerning when it comes to …
- what occupies the spaces in my home.
- how I spend my time each day.
- where my heart’s attention lies.
With a minimalist mindset, I can easily say yes to what resonates with my heart, and no to what doesn’t.
We’ll end on that note. If you already read these posts, take a few minutes to re-read them in sequence. They work really well together. Then spend some time this weekend considering how you can apply these concepts to your own life. Enjoy your weekend and have fun experimenting!