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Minimalism: Living with Less and Why it Affects You

I recently watched Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things. It is a fascinating documentary that follows two minimalists, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, who left their well paying but unfulfilling corporate jobs. Instead, they started living a minimalist lifestyle and wrote a book about their experiences. The documentary also features a former wall street banker (AJ Leon), a journalist (Dan Harris), and psychologist (Rick Hanson) who explain the reasons behind of why we consume so much, yet still can’t attain happiness.

The documentary sends a message about living more purposefully with less. It shows how many of us are looking for meaning in our lives, and how many of us turn to things to find meaning. It challenges us to be self-reflexive and ask an important question – is this adding value to my life? Every single person has their own perception on what living a minimalist lifestyle means, which is showcased in this documentary.  It also touches upon success and how every single person has their own version of what success is. As 20-something year olds, we are all at a phase in our lives where we want to have success, and it was very insightful to see the different perspectives from the documentary. I would highly recommend this movie to anyone and everyone, and you can find it on Netflix. Here are some of the important points that I took away from this documentary:

 

Having a Balance

“It comes down to a value based ideal; you want to do most amount of good and get the most amount of value with exactly what you need. Having too little is not going to give you that, and having too much is not going to give it to you. Having that balance having enough, that is what you are looking for.”

– Patrick Rhones

 

The Importance of Value

“The people you bring into your life, you should always be hanging out with people you have the same values, and that’s really what minimalism is about, it’s about living deliberately. So, every choice that I make, every relationship, every item, every dollar I spend, I’m not perfect, obviously, but I do ask the question – is this adding value?”

 

Simplicity

“Imagine a life with less, a life of passion unencumbered by the trappings of the chaotic world around you. Well, what you are imagining is an intentional life, it’s not a perfect life and it’s not even an easy life but a simple one.”

– Ryan Nicodemus

 

Less Stuff and More Meaning

“Imagine a life with less, less stuff, less clutter, less stress, and discontent, A life with fewer distractions. Now imagine a life with more. More time, more meaningful relationships, more growth and contribution and contentment.”

– Ryan Nicodemus

 

Less is More

“The whole point of this message and the whole point of sharing this story is to help people curb that appetite for more things because it is such a destructive path to go down.”  

– Ryan Nicodemus

 

“Love people, use things because the opposite never works.”

– Joshua Fields Milburn

Alisha is a third-year student at Simon Fraser University where she is majoring in Communication and minoring in Gender Studies. She watches way too much T.V and loves country music.
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