New Year’s Resolution: Minimalism

This year, my new year's resolution looks a little bit different from typical resolutions like “get more sleep,” “exercise more,” “drink more water,” and  “drink less coffee!”

Currently, the lack of sleep is inevitable. And honestly, I just really love coffee and I couldn’t imagine my days without it. I’ve successfully stuck to my resolution from 2014, which was to start exercising, and I love water more than life.

But, I also love stuff. So, I’m trying to embrace minimalism.

Minimalism, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is “a style or technique (as in music literature or design) that is characterized by extreme spareness or simplicity.”

Here are 5 things that I’m doing to embrace my new year's resolution of minimalism.

1. Winter Cleaning

The first thing I have done in embracing minimalism is going through all of my possessions. I have found little use for notes I printed out for finals or notebooks from high school. Clearing out things I don’t need helps me see the things that I do need and clears mental space as well

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2. Shop less.

I’m also a broke college student, but I spend a lot of time browsing clothing websites and not buying anything. Not only does this waste my time, but it makes me yearn for things that I don’t have, which takes away from appreciating the things that I do have.

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3. Reduce Plastic.

In trying to own fewer items and be less owned by the items that I own, I’ve been thinking about the impact I make on the environment. I have always been environmentally conscious, but I’ve been making more of an effort to bring my own coffee cups into coffee shops and reduce my consumptions where I can.

Photo Credit: Frank Michel, Flickr

4. Rent instead of buy.

This mostly applies to textbooks for the semester, but I rented all of the books that I needed so I am not stuck with something that I have no use for once the semester ends.


5. Be wary of sales.

As a seasoned retail worker, sales are just a ploy to get consumers to buy things that they don’t need—so, I’ve been even more conscious about it with post-Christmas sales. I don’t have space for the beautiful sweater from the Gap Outlet in my hometown (even though it only cost 9.99!) Everything about a retail store is designed to maximize profit as much as possible, so be aware of that when you’re out and about.


Overall, trying to embrace minimalism has decreased the clutter in my life as well as increased my overall mental clarity. In a world inundated by stuff and unnecessary items, it’s been interesting trying to actively oppose unnecessary purchases and items.


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