Please note: This is a guest post from Lisa Avellan of Simple And Soul
I wandered into minimalism with the hope for relief. I needed just enough room to breathe and think clearly. Space to make sense of my life as a wife and mom and whatever more is in store for me in this life.
I wanted a break from the guilt and shame. I wanted a reprieve from the overwhelm, and multiplying toys my kids never seemed to play with, but were always right under my feet. Just a small gap between the slow dance of stay-at-home mom life and sanity, you know — to leave room for the things that bring joy, as they say.
I told myself, if I got rid of a few toys, that’d be at least three fewer things to trip over. If I let go of a shirt or two I’d probably be able to close that dresser drawer. If I just delete this one app from my phone I won’t be tempted to distract myself so often. I was fine settling with just enough, as long as I survived till the next thing hit.
It’s not a bad place to start, small and slow. But I wasn’t interested in starting, I was interested in just getting by, surviving really. Just enough minimalism to get me through. I thought I could manage my life with just a little bit of simple. I’d sigh with relief, wipe my brow and trod onward with just enough energy and clarity to make it to the next Mom’s Night Out. I thought that I knew how much simple I needed to regain control of my life.
But I found that minimalism isn’t just a crutch to help me get by and be a little more comfortable in life. Minimalism isn’t only to help me get by in my life, it is to make enough room to thrive in my life.
I decided it was time to quit using minimalism to just get by in my life.
What I realized while dabbling in simple living changed everything. It changed how I pursued minimalism, how I valued myself and my family and even my things. It cleared my head to finally dive in deep and choose simple for good.
After this realization, life felt fully charged. Every day felt new, even in the routines. My attitude changed, my self-worth tank filled, and my dreams began to reinvent themselves as the space around me expanded. And I decided to dive deeper. Minimalism taught me that pouring out is the secret to filling up. Maybe it would be for you too?
Consider these 10 ways minimalism and simple living promotes a positive and abundant life of less.
1. Minimalism helps uncover the real you.
When minimalism and simpler is more than temporary relief, it gives you permission to be yourself with no shame, no regret. You shed the guilt of not being good enough and stand tall in truly being enough.
2. Minimalism helps clarify priorities.
Remove one distraction and you’ll recognize five more.
“Identify the essentials. Eliminate the rest.” Greg McKeown
“You cannot overestimate the unimportance of practically everything.” John C Maxwell
3. Minimalism redefines enough.
Enough is not a neutral state. It’s gratitude for what you already have.
4. Minimalism ignites passion.
That thing you used to love but don’t have time or space or energy for – minimalism will reignite it with abundance and bring your soul to life.
5. Simpler living restores order.
That feeling of overwhelm dissipates as you name priorities, set boundaries, and restore the order of your soul, family, work, purpose, and passions. Routine and rhythms flow with a renewed purpose.
6. It restores your soul.
There is a version of you inside that has been buried underneath stuff, comparison, expectation, shame, perfectionism, and negative self-talk. Minimalism releases all of those wounds into the healing exposure of unconditional love.
7. It captures the present.
Every mother I know feels like time with her littles is slipping through her fingers, like raging river waters. Simplify and slow down. More often, enjoy the moment with your eyes and heart, instead of the glow of the iPhone camera.
8. Simple sparks joy.
Bubbles in the backyard. Tickles in the morning. Walks through the woods. Sand castles and shell collecting. Fireside family stories. The demands of excess will surely steal the opportunity for moments of pure joy. Choose joy.
9. Simply living activates courage.
A simple life replaces fear with courage. A purposeful life of less calls us out of a life of fitting in, of complacency and conformity. It takes courage to choose differently.
10. It gives us greater purpose.
We are meant for more than just surviving our life. Shed the excess and discover the gifts and talents you were created to share with the world. Never underestimate the benefits of using minimalism to thrive in your life instead of just get by. Keep going, don’t settle. Every step toward simple is leading you to a positive state of being in which living with less is more than enough.
*Visit Simple and Soul on Facebook for inspiration and enjoy the free Home & Soul Declutter Kit, a digital guidebook to declutter your home with purpose (and a plan) and uncover your soul with truth, including a prompted journal practice.