More and more people are adopting minimalism as a way of life.
Books on how to declutter your home are filling bookstore shelves, articles on simple living get million hits online and capsule wardrobes have never been so popular.
Simplifying is in a lot of people’s minds.
Why is that?
Because the benefits to adopting a simpler life are endless.
And here’s the top 11 based on my own experience.
1. More time
One of the most obvious and amazing benefits of simplifying your life is TIME. Decluttering will make you gain precious time on a daily basis.
Imagine what it would feel like if you had an extra hour a day to spend with your kids, go to the gym or meet up with your friends. Imagine a life where you don’t have to spend your Saturday doing chores and have time do something you love instead.
2. Less stress
Living in a cluttered home is stressful.
A recent research shows the link between messy, cluttered rooms and higher stress levels as measured by cortisol levels in women of the study. Women who live in a tidy, restful home had lower stress levels.
3. More energy, lower weight
Quite a few minimalists improved their health and lost weight as a result of decluttering. This may have to do with Chi or the ‘life force energy’ referred to by traditional chinese medicine.
Clutter is blocked energy and that energy has a negative effect on your mental and physical well-being.
By decluttering your home, you will become more energetic and may even end up losing weight.
4. Free mind
Clutter brings us down. It does not only take space in our homes but also in our minds. Clearing the space around you will take away unneeded confusion and free up your mind for things that truly matter.
5. More freedom
One thing that I realized as I made the decision to declutter our home is that our ‘stuff’ rule us; they tie us down.
It might be the reason why you’re hesitant to move to another place or take a few months off to travel. Because you wonder what you’ll do with all your ‘stuff’.
Having less means you can choose to live in a smaller place that costs less and takes less to ‘maintain’. That means more time to do what you want to do and become whoever you want to be.
6. You find everything quickly
In a cluttered environment, it’s hard to find your keys, the matching sock, your glasses and more. As you start letting go of what doesn’t serve a purpose, things get much clearer.
Everything is in its rightful place and you don’t waste time looking for things.
7. You are more present and engaged
Minimalism leads to a more engaged life. You have more free time and energy to engage with people around you; attend that retreat you’ve been dying to go to, nurture relationships with loved ones or even make new friendships.
8. You are more grateful for what you have
Because we’ve accumulated so much, we don’t give enough value to the things around us.
Clutter makes it hard for us to identify what we really love in our home. Once you’ve let go, you start appreciating the few possessions you have left. You give them the care that they deserve.
9. You collect experiences, not things.
Just think for a moment. What are your fondest memories? The memories you cherish the most.
I bet they don’t involve material things but rather experiences.
Our fondest memories usually relate to feelings or emotions, not to things. Focusing on experiencing will make you happier than accumulating things.
Related post: 97 Clutter-Free Gift Ideas (experiences, not things)
10. Free therapy
The decluttering process is super therapeutic! Detaching yourself from your possessions gives you a chance to part with past emotions associated with the things that you held on to. Letting go of the old gives you a chance to make space for the new.
11. More focus
More things mean less focus.
Japanese minimalist Fumio Sasaki calls it the ‘silent to-do list’ saying that each item sends us a silent message. Each of those items triggers messages like the empty soap on the bathroom sink ‘I’m running out’, the broken doorknob you’ve been meaning to repair ‘fix me now’, etc.
Those silent messages clutter our minds and make us lose track of our priorities. As we let go of the clutter, the messages become fewer and our ability to concentrate improves.
Our lives have never been so complicated. Jam-packed agendas with never ending duties and chores, focusing on accumulating things rather than experiences. No wonder it always feels like something’s missing.
Decluttering your home and life will give you more time to reflect on what truly matters and more freedom to live a more focused and engaged life.