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Pros and Cons of Minimal Living

Have you wondered if minimal living is for you? Many people are switching to this lifestyle and loving it.

The Author of Zen Habits Leo Babauta (if you haven’t read it I recommend it) defines minimalism as:

“It’s simply getting rid of things you do not use or need, leaving an uncluttered, simple environment, and an uncluttered simple life. It’s living without an obsession with material things or an obsession with doing everything and doing to much.”

I personally like this idea, and try to apply some of these values to my own life. However, minimal living is tougher than most people think. Let’s review some pros and cons.

There are many pros to minimal living.

One of the main keys is that people strongly begin to value experiences over things. Others argue that with minimal living you have more time to enjoy life due to the lessor amount of things you have. And of course haven’t less ‘things’ leads to and easer house to clean and less money spending. Some people even go so far as wearing the same outfits each day of the week so they don’t have to wonder what they will be wearing or need to make the decision of what to wear. This can lead to higher focus and productivity because you have used less of your thought process to worry about these things which allows you to give greater focus to other things.

There are also cons.

For example, if you are not alone in your home (I.e. with a partner or have kids) they may not so readily adapt to this lifestyle, or understand what you're doing. Especially kids who don’t understand why the sudden cut down on clothes and toys. Plus, people also might not understand what your trying to do outside your house. They may even feel you are going ‘too overboard’. Or your hardships could come from within, if you love shopping, minimalism will be an extremely hard lifestyle to adapt. Especially if you’re like me and love new technology as it comes out. That is something you’ll have to resist as well.

There are many things to consider before making the switch. But mostly, does it work for you? Will others be affected by this choice and what are their thoughts? These are key things to consider before making such a drastic lifestyle switch.

To summarize, on one hand we have the freedom of owning less, and in the other we have a more standard lifestyle others will more readily understand. Which would you choose?

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