It’s been two years since Trevor and I became Minimalists and, we’re happy to say, we’ve learned a number of things. The experience wasn’t always easy, or enjoyable, but we have arrived at a much improved and happier state of living.
We’re More Aware
I’d say its safe to say that Trevor and I lived life with blinders on before becoming Minimalists. We did things because, well, that was the way things were always done. There wasn’t much thought or reflection on what we consumed and why.
We can now easily see marketing tactics and subliminal advertising. Ads were annoying before, but we’re very sensitive to their presence out and about these days. Of course, we used to be highly susceptible to marketing, but these days we’re a little wiser and even go out of our way to avoid adverts.
I never would have imagined a few years ago that I’d be hyper-aware of what items we own and what we bring into our home, especially the later. Shopping is something I tend to do solo, as I’m a little better at sticking to a list, and I truly ponder every single item that I throw into my basket and purchase at the register.
Trevor’s become extremely aware of all the things we used to have that we’ve found to be unnecessary in our own home. A few examples of this would be a living room set, tons and tons of books, magazines, candy, toys, action figures, serving dishes…and so much more. We’re very aware of what our lifestyle is and the things that we actually need in order to make life happen.
Removing all of our old stuff/distractions has really allowed us to allocate time to reflect on, and understand, our state of being in regards to physical and mental health. I didn’t particularly care about my health in the past, but would spend a lot of time being upset over how I looked, or felt. After a lot of tears and self-reflection, I’ve realized that I want to be healthy more than anything, regardless of how long that it takes. I’ve also been able to address my mental health and face a lot of the baggage I’d been carrying for most of my life. I truly believe Minimalism and Essentialism were the tools that helped me get to a place in which I was able to reflect and address in a healthy way.
We’re More Mindful
Life before Minimalism for us was chaotic and frantic. Without the things we used to distract ourselves with, our life is much more simple and intentional.
Every time any of us go shopping we’re voting with our dollars. Trevor and I have been able to reflect on how we’d like to vote with our money and do out best to stay true to those goals and values. this isn’t only in terms of social and environmental issues, but investing our money in our own health as well.
What we put into our bodies has become a HUGE focus for us in 2017 and we’ve been able to do some research on how processed foods are made. What we discovered absolutely disgusted us and we’re doing our best to choose raw produce as often as possible for our nutritional needs.
Without stuff we’ve been able to be more reflective, and found we want to be more mindful with actions and words. This means doing good deeds, being present, using neutral and positive language (unless trying to make a point, or properly explain emotions) and overall trying to exude positivity. Hopefully we can bring more happiness to ourselves and others.
We’re More Appreciative
Okay, so it’s not like we weren’t appreciative of things in the past. Rather, we’re more appreciative and also appreciative of more things. Like nature!
Craftsmanship of goods and the things we have in our home is something we’re newly appreciative for. I don’t know if buying higher quality items has anything to do with it, but Trevor and I find that we’re impressed with our belongings frequently. We’ll say things like “this rice cooker makes me so happy” on a daily basis.
We’re finally appreciative of our life, the things in it, and how we feel. In the past we definitely weren’t happy with our circumstances, but we’ve grown into this beautiful mindset and treasure the experiences we have.
Time is precious, and constantly running away from us all. You want to spend as much time as you need to on things, that you can move on to do bigger and better things. We’ve come to treasure time and all the ways we spend it, and never really see anything as a waste of time any more.
If you’ve noticed changes in yourself from Minimalism, or Essentialism, please let us know in the comments below!