Why is minimalism so popular?

Minimalism, the notion of buying and owning only the items you really need, is growing in popularity and especially among millennials.   This generation has grown up consuming digital content from music, books and games rather than the physical formats of their parents’ generation (like books, CD’s, DVD’s, board-games).  The non-millennials are quickly adapting to the joys of the new approach.

Decorating in an uncluttered clean style also appeals to more and more people adopting minimalism.   Many embracing this lifestyle are nomads who like traveling and prefer keeping things simple.

Some benefits of minimalism:

1.  Less stuff means saving money for stuff you really care about (like travel!)
I recently went six months without buying an article of clothing.  At first I thought this would be very hard and instead found it wasn’t hard at all.  I reunited with a number of items in the back of my closet and resuscitated a handful of tops and pants I had stashed away in drawers.  In the end, I painlessly saved enough money to fund an impromptu trip to San Diego for five days.

2.  Lack of clutter keeps your mind clear
Have you ever noticed that when your desk is clear, your bed is made and things in your home are in order that you feel like you have more mind space?  It’s because you do! There is a calmness and sense of peace that comes from having less clutter.  It’s also physiological.  According to a study by Princeton, having too much visual stimulus within your view makes your brain distracted!

3.  Better to have fewer high quality items
There’s some truth to “you get what you pay for”.  Especially today when so many items are manufactured cheaply so they can be sold inexpensively.  It’s easy to get caught up in trends and buy items that go out of style rapidly.   Buying fewer high quality items that are classic brands and/or styles saves in the long run.

4.  More stuff means more stuff in the landfill
Less is more.  What we overbuy largely winds up in the landfill.  If you walk around your home or apartment counting everything you see, you’d find thousands maybe hundreds of thousands of items. Now, if you counted the items you absolutely need it might be dozens or hundreds.

A confession is that I’m an evolving minimalist.  I do a good job not buying things I don’t need, getting rid of stuff I’m not using and I never buy things on credit.  My daughter describes my home as “zen” because of it’s clean and uncluttered design.

My weaknesses include having a nice car and periodically buying decorative items for the house.     AS a nomad, I also love fine dining, nice hotels and occasionally a spa treatment!   Minimalism looks different for all of us.


Are you aspiring to be a minimalist?  How have you evolved?  What benefits do you expect or have you experienced?  Share your thoughts below.

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