Becoming a minimalist?​

photo_2018-06-11_10-25-14Are you willing to have and use only one towel for everything? If so, you can easily become a true minimalist, according to Fumio Sasaki, author of Goodbye, Things: The New Japanese Minimalism. Minimalism is a “concept that promotes all those things we value most and removes everything that distracts us from it.”

Using one towel for everything is a bit extreme, don’t you think? Not for Mr. Sasaki. He has done this for years now; he discarded almost everything which he totaled to be into hundreds of thousands of dollars including living in a 200 square meter apartment and having only a few pairs of trousers and shirts. He did all that in exchange for a much happier life.

“Goodbye, Things” is interesting and convincing. Although I can’t live 100% like Mr. Sasaki for I am not 35 years old and I am married :), I agree with him that getting rid of things frees us from trying to chase stuff we don’t need, but we always think will give us freedom. It gives all that time for us to enjoy life in a more meaningful way. I have done that myself and found some happiness in doing that as well. I think, however, that the book can be condensed a bit. For those of you who just want to get the key ideas or tips about how to live life as minimalist, reading the sections “The 55 tips to help you say goodbye to your things” and “the 15 more tips for the next stage of your minimalist journey” should be more than sufficient.

Below are the “55 tips to help you say goodbye to your things” you can find right at the end of the book. A description of the tips can also be found in chapter 3 if you are interested to read in more detail about each advice.

  1. Discard the preconception that you can’t discard your things.
  2. Discarding something takes skill.
  3. When you discard something, you gain more than you lose.
  4. Ask yourself why you can’t part with your things.
  5. Minimizing is difficult, but it’s not impossible.
  6. There are limits to the capacity of your brain, your energy, and your time.
  7. Discard something right now.
  8. There isn’t a single item you’ll regret throwing away.
  9. Start with things that are clearly junk.
  10. Minimize anything you have in multiples.
  11. Get rid of it if you haven’t used it in a year.
  12. Discard it if you have it for the sake of appearance.
  13. Differentiate between things you want and things you need.
  14. Take photos of the items that are tough to part with.
  15. It’s easier to revisit your memories once you go digital.
  16. Our things are like roommates, except we pay their rent.
  17. Organizing is not minimizing.
  18. Tackle the nest (storage) before the pest (clutter).
  19. Leave your “unused” space empty.
  20. Let go of the idea of“someday.”
  21. Say goodbye to who you used to be.
  22. Discard the things you have already forgotten about.
  23. Don’t get creative when you’re trying to discard things.
  24. Let go of the idea of getting your money’s worth.
  25. There’s no need to stock up.
  26. Feeling the spark of joy will help you focus.
  27. Auction services are a quick way to part with your possessions.
  28. Use auctions to take one last look at your things.
  29. Use a pickup service to get rid of your possessions.
  30. Don’t get hung up on the prices that you initially paid.
  31. Think of stores as your personal warehouses.
  32. The city is our personal floor plan.
  33. Discard any possessions that you can’t discuss with passion.
  34. If you lost it, would you buy it again?
  35. If you can’t remember how many presents you’ve given, don’t worry about the gifts you’ve gotten.
  36. Try to imagine what the person who passed away would have wanted.
  37. Discarding memorabilia is not the same as discarding memories.
  38. Our biggest items trigger chain reactions.
  39. Our homes aren’t museums; they don’t need collections.
  40. Be social; be a borrower.
  41. Rent what can be rented.
  42. Social media can boost your minimizing motivation.
  43. What if you started from scratch?
  44. Say “see you later” before you say goodbye.
  45. Discard anything that creates visual noise.
  46. One in, one out.
  47. Avoid the Concorde fallacy.
  48. Be quick to admit mistakes. They help you grow.
  49. Think of buying as renting.
  50. Don’t buy it because it’s cheap. Don’t take it because it’s free.
  51. If it’s not a “hell, yes!” it’s a “no.”
  52. The things we really need will always find their way back to us.
  53. Keep the gratitude.
  54. Discarding things can be wasteful. But the guilt that keeps you from minimizing is the true waste.
  55. The things we say goodbye to are the things we’ll remember forever.

Just one quick thing to remember about becoming a minimalist. Don’t compare yourself with others. Let others have what they want. Just stick to simple living! In case your subconscious mind tells you to compare, consider the following quote from the book: “Want to know how to make yourself instantly unhappy? Compare yourself with someone else.”

Categories: ឧត្តមសិក្សា

2 replies

  1. Hi
    Very valuable memo. I am trying my best to get rid of things. Not easy with a partner who loves things. Trying a happy medium.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Sam. I have that challenge as well. Many things I decide to throw away are often brought back to their original places in the house. I respect her choice. At the end of the day, a happy wife = a happy life?


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