Thursday, March 8, 2012
Chilled Blogs: The Minimalists
Joshua Millburn quit his job about a year ago and, partnered with Ryan Nicodemus, started writing ‘essays’ for a living through the blog: ‘The Minimalists.’ I say writing essays and not blog posts because the essay’s they write (on almost a daily basis) are much more thorough than you would find on your run of the mill blog.
The blog itself covers the infinitely complex topic of simplifying ones life. I know, that sentence makes no sense, but after you delve deeply into their archive of essay’s you’ll understand what I mean. They talk about reducing stress, career, love and more.
I actually interviewed these guys a while back so here is an excerpt from just that:
What exactly drew you guys to minimalism?
Joshua: For me, it was when my mother died in 2009. I realized that we live exactly one life, and I wanted to make the most of it. I saw all of the “stuff” that she left behind and realized that the “stuff” wasn’t important. It’s the experiences that are important.
Ryan: I had a light bulb go off when for the first time I made over 100k in one year and realized I had nothing to show for it. No savings, just a bunch of stuff. I realized that ultimately I defined my life by how many things I had, what toys I had, what car I drove, etc. and yet I still felt empty.
During my career I slowly began to realized that money doesn’t make one happy. Money doesn’t buy more time. A fancy job title doesn’t extend one’s life. I chose minimalism because it makes me feel like I’m actually working towards something. That whole “less is more” saying became very true in my life. Now I can focus one what’s important.
What do you consider ‘minimalism?’ How do you live a minimalist life?
Minimalism is a tool to get rid of the excess in your life in favor of focusing on what’s important in life so you can find happiness, fulfillment, and freedom. It can help you find your mission in life, discover your passions, improve your relationships, and even live a healthier lifestyle. We have a "What Is Minimalism?" page on our site with a full explanation and some good links that will help you discover minimalism for yourself.
We both practice what we preach, and we are constantly evolving, which for us means questioning what we have, questioning our purchases, and focusing on the events of our life rather than stuff. We'd rather focus on our health, relationships, and pursuing our passions than on accumulating more things.
What benefits are there to the minimalist lifestyle?
Ryan: To live a meaningful life one needs to be happy with themselves, and one needs to pursue his or her passions. For me that’s not worrying about what I’m going to purchase next, or how many things I have. Now I concentrate on who I’m going to talk to next. I am always thinking about who I am going to help next. I have more time to focus on the friends and family I have around me. My passions include helping others, and leading people to a more happy meaningful life.
Joshua: Growth and contribution. That’s the meaning of life for me. Minimalism frees me from my old consumerist patterns so I can grow as an individual and contribute to others in a meaningful way. Also, I am passionate about writing, and I have more time to focus on that passion. I also have more time to focus on the important stuff in life: my health and my personal relationship.
Back to me
Check out their blog about minimalism here. I highly recommend setting aside a good hour or two to peruse their archives. You’ll be surprised and the wonderful information you’ll find.