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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Wilfrid Laurier chapter.

Minimalism is a practice that focuses on living with very minimal materialistic possessions. It is something that takes a lot of self-control, especially in today’s age when you are surrounded by technology, social media and ads (notably ones that are customized for you). Purchasing items gives everyone a rush of excitement. A lot of the time, this feeling is very temporary and goes away either instantaneously or a few days after your purchase. Practicing minimalism has a number of benefits and can help you feel calmer and at peace with yourself. Here are just a few reasons why you should try it out!

1. Less Distraction by Material Possessions

Everything that we surround ourselves with, whether we’re aware of it or not, can be a distraction. The cliché saying “money can’t buy happiness” applies perfectly to this scenario. Most of us buy miscellaneous items that we think we need, but that are really just wants. If you’ve been living without an item for this long, there is a good chance that you don’t actually need it. That dwindling feeling of excitement when something is purchased can put you into a dangerous cycle of shopping to feel a temporary surge of pleasure. Although not so severe in most cases, this can quickly become an addiction (the need to feel a sense of excitement again). Luckily, all habits can be broken, and once this one is, you’ll be able to find more peace within yourself as you focus more on yourself and what truly makes you happy.

2. Saving Money

Habitual spending can very quickly accumulate over time. Small purchases here and there can end up being a huge amount. Avoiding looking at your bank account is a common practice because no one wants to be hit with the reality of how much they’re spending. Scaling back on purchases and/or limiting yourself to either a specific spending budget can be a huge help. It may not seem like it right away, but over time you’ll be able to save a lot more which is a huge stress reliever.

3. Cleaner and Less Cluttered Living Space

Not only will you find that there is a lot less cleaning to do but you’ll have a space to live in that is significantly more pleasing to the eye. Too much clutter and an abundance of knickknacks can be an eyesore. Being in a clean and clutter-free environment can really lift your mood. Not only will it make you feel better, but your living space will appear larger and more spacious. Along with this, there will be a lot less waste, which is not only great for you but the environment, as well.

4. Enhanced Sense of Confidence

Something that comes along with owning many things is the connection that you have to them. Minimalism promotes individuality and self-reliance. Instead of feeling tied to all these items that you own, you’ll be able to focus more on yourself and your happiness. It’s really that simple.

It’s important to remember that minimalism isn’t tied to extremism. There are many small steps you can take to live in a minimalistic way. With a bit of determination and self-control, you can achieve a happier and more simplistic lifestyle!

Tamara Jefak

Wilfrid Laurier '22

Tamara is in her third year at Wilfrid Laurier University and is pursuing a double major in English and Communication Studies. Alongside writing, she enjoys traveling, sparkling water, and dancing in the kitchen while cooking with her roommates.
Rebecca is in her 5th year at Wilfrid Laurier University.  During the school year, she can be found drinking copious amounts of kombucha, watching hockey and procrastinating on Pinterest. She joined HCWLU as an editor in the Winter 2018 semester, and after serving as one of the Campus Correspondents in 2019-20, she is excited to be returning for the 2020-21 school year! she/her