Four core motivations to adopt Minimalism

Minimalism started moving from a trend to being adopted more broadly. I'm not speaking about extreme Minimalism or the influencers that earn a living by creating beautiful illusions, ideals that make us feel unworthy. I mean actively reflecting on our lifestyle and adjusting it to become happier.

Minimalists reduce what does not add value to their lives (habits, objects, relationships, etc.) to have the time and energy to focus on what matters to them. Minimalism doesn't translate into more, less, or nothing. It means just enough. And this is different for each of us.

Observing minimalists (and myself), I've identified four core motivations that triggered them to start their minimalist journey: Simplicity, flexibility, sustainability, and frugality. Let's have a closer look at them.


Our monkey brain is wired to consume as much as possible because when you're roaming the savannah with your herd and to find fruits, you eat as much as possible. You never know when the next one comes around. But in the world of abundance that we live in right now, our urge to do that becomes a conflict. We eat more than is healthy, we own more than we need, and the oversupply of available activities stresses us. We're stressed and unhappy, although we have everything we could imagine.

To cope with that, people start reducing and simplifying. Become more conscious of what and how they consume, what and who they spend their time with.


Some of us strive to live a nomadic life. Or at least have the flexibility to move around whenever they choose, not being held back by stuff or obligations.


You want to reduce your negative footprint on our planet and environment. Either because you want to maintain a livable habitat for your kids or don't harm other creatures. You'll get closer to your goals when reducing your consumption and consuming mindfulness.


Either you have to live on a smaller budget, or you want to reduce spending now and invest it for the future. Either way, Minimalism is an excellent way to reduce spending to a minimum.


Luckily, once started, you'll reap the other motivations' benefits. Living more frugally, for example, can reduce the number of objects you own and thus reduce stress. Focusing on simplicity will have an impact on your spending etc. I know several examples where people start Minimalism out of one motivation and, step by step, enjoy the benefits of the other three motivations.

The most important thing when you consider trying Minimalism: don't stress yourself. Know why you're doing it, but don't go extreme. Like some diets, that might stress you out and cause a yoyo effect. Start slow, get used to it, and build your habits. It will become natural over time. And don't compare yourself with other people. Minimalism is not a competition; it's only about you.

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