What is a Minimalist Lifestyle (and is it right for you?)

A minimalist lifestyle is an intentional way of living.  It is a simpler way of life with fewer possessions and clutter. But is a minimalist lifestyle right for you?

We live cluttered lives these days.  We are always buying ‘stuff’. Some of it we need of course, but how many things do you actually buy that you don’t really need?

With Amazon and other online retailers just a short purchasing click away, we often don’t really consider if what we are buying is needed and will truly benefit our lives.

Every day another headline is telling us to buy something.  Things for our homes, things for our bodies, things for this and that. They tell us we must have that thing, that we need that thing, and besides everybody else has that thing!

But what if every time you are about to hit that buy now button you actually think about what you are buying?

Is it something that you will forget about after using it a few times? Is it something that will just clutter up your home for the wrong reasons?

Adopting a minimalist lifestyle means looking at everything you purchase and own differently.

It means getting rid of things that no longer serve you, making decisions that can be hard, and things that arouse your emotions.

But a minimalist lifestyle can also make your home better and more organized. It can help with your anxiety and stress, and it can make you feel better about your part in the world.

So read on to see if a minimalist lifestyle might be right for you!

What is Minimalism? Is it right for you?

What is a Minimalist Lifestyle?

A minimalist lifestyle is a simpler way of living your life with fewer possessions, clutter and ‘things’.

The whole premise of minimalism is to live with intention – to only choose and use products and items that serve a purpose in your life.

It means you get rid of clutter, scale back your possessions, and have a different attitude.

The practice of miminalism is different for everybody – everyone’s life and circumstances are different for what they need and want.

The Benefits of Minimalism

Minimalism can help to create better mental health, better physical space, and a better emotional state.

Minimalism can reduce our attachment to physical things. This means that you can have only the things that you truly love in your home.

Minimalism can also make you more eco-friendly.  By reducing shopping and buying new things you are doing your part for the environment.

What are the Goals of Minimalism?

There are many goals of minimalism, these include:

  • Making your house work for you – to the point that you have more organization, less clutter, and feel better living in your home.
  • Staying on top of things that need to be done in your home
  • Eliminating the need to keep buying new things, spending money and being more eco-conscious.
  • Improving your mental health – with less clutter in your life

How to Implement a Minimalist Lifestyle

To implement a minimalist lifestyle you have to think intentionally about everything that you buy, have or want.

Your particular minimalist lifestyle will be different from another person’s minimalist lifestyle.

But there are several essences of minimalism that we can all share and implement. These include:


This is the first place you should start once you have decided to practice minimalism.

All our homes are cluttered, with so much stuff.   Some of it we use daily, some of it we haven’t used for a while, and some of it we have just – well – forgotten about.

Decluttering comes down to 3 basic things – keep, trash, or donate.

To declutter look at an object in your home.  Do you want to keep it, should it be trashed? or can you donate it?

Deciding to keep something isn’t always simple. Is it something that you use every day and need, therefore you really should keep that object?

Or is it something you are keeping just because it is sentimental?  Did somebody give it to you? Was it left to you in your grandmother’s will?  Did you meet your significant other wearing that particular dress?

Is that item broken? If it absolutely can’t be used anymore it should really be trashed.

Is that item something that you haven’t used for many years, it has just sat in a closet for all that time?

If you haven’t used an item for a while ask yourself – will I ever truly use this?

If it is genuinely something that you would not ever use, but don’t want to throw away, donate it instead. Somebody may love that item and have a great need for it.

Go through your home room by room and decide what to keep, discard or donate. Try to be practical, although of course that can be hard.

You will find that decluttering will make you feel better in your space. You will feel better mentally (because clutter has an effect on our mental health), and you will feel freer and more at ease.

What is Minimalism? Is it right for you?
Photo by Anastasia Shuraeva: https://www.pexels.com

Tidy up Your Kitchen

You may be wondering why the kitchen and why the emphasis on this room in your home?

Our kitchens are the place that we spend a lot of time.  We prepare meals in it, we prepare our lunches for work and school, we grab snacks.  We also eat in them and socialize in them.

We spend a lot of time in our kitchens, and they are arguably the most important room in our homes.

But a cluttered kitchen just won’t work for you.  If you have to hunt down an object every time you need to use it, or can’t remember where something is stored it is just wasting your time.

It also isn’t fun to be in a cluttered kitchen.  When our countertops are full of everything, so we have little space to actually prepare food, it can be frustrating.

When our cupboards are bursting with many things we don’t actually use, and our drawers are all turning into junk drawers it doesn’t make you want to hang out for long in that room.

Take an inventory of your kitchen. Do you have at least 2 different mixers, numerous mixing bowls most of which you never use?

Do you have so many plates that you could feed an entire football team in one setting? Do you have drinking glasses for drinks that you never even have – such as sherry glasses!

What is Minimalism? Is it right for you?
Photo by Rachel Claire: https://www.pexels.com

Keep just what you need for your lifestyle.  A set of plates, mugs, dishes and cutlery that is right for your life and your family.

You can also double up on items. Instead of a toaster and a toaster oven and an air fryer, maybe just keep that toaster oven.

Don’t keep absolutely everything out on your countertops (if you declutter you may actually have room in your cupboards for that stuff!).  Clutter-free open countertops make your kitchen feel so much friendlier and makes them more productive.

Go Through your Wardrobe

Is your wardrobe absolutely stuffed full of clothes?  I can bet that in your wardrobe you have a mixture of things that you wear frequently, things that you have only worn a few times, special occasion items, and things you have never worn and forgotten about.

What is Minimalism? Is it right for you?
Photo by Ron Lach : https://www.pexels.com

Start out by going through your wardrobe and trying everything on.  Some people like to pull everything out of their wardrobe or closet – and this is a good way of doing this because with everything out you will be forced to finish that task!

Try on your clothing and see what fits you or doesn’t anymore.  Anything that doesn’t fit discard if it is stained or torn.  Anything that doesn’t fit that is in good condition donate.

You have to be practical. You love that dress that you bought many years ago, but you have only worn it once and you can’t fit into it anymore – and you are not a size 2 anymore.  Why keep it? Be reasonable!

Consider compiling a capsule wardrobe.  This means that all the pieces that you keep can be worn together in some way, and you will need less outfits.

For instance a pair of black trousers that you have could be paired with that white shirt, or that grey hoodie.  That black dress can be worn on its own, or with that grey cardigan.

With a capsule wardrobe you can come up with many different outfits, with less clothing needed to complete those outfits.

When you have special occasions that require a nicer dress consider renting. It can be economical to rent a piece of clothing, and you can ensure that you are always getting the latest fashions and trends.

Organize your clothing going forward so that you can easily find what you want to wear.

Related: 4 Items to Include in a Winter Capsule Wardrobe
Related: 4 Tips for a Stylish & Professional Work Wardrobe

Going Forward with Minimalism

Remember also – to do your part in decluttering, tidying up etc takes very little of your time every day.

You can do a small thing each day towards your goals – such as clearing out the kitchen junk drawer, tidying up one shelf of a cupboard etc.

If you want to do something more and have more time you can take on a much bigger project.

Change your mindset going forward by considering if you really need that thing. Does it make you happy? Does it bring you joy?

A minimalist lifestyle is an intentional way of living.  It is a simpler way of life with fewer possessions and clutter. But is a minimalist lifestyle right for you?

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