Contentment and minimalism: Finding happiness through simplicity

finding the sweet spot between contentment and minimalism

For some people, contentment comes naturally right after getting on the path to minimalism. However, for others, it is a process that needs quite some effort and intention. In this article, I will explain my view on these concepts and give you some inspiration on how to actually find contentment through minimalism.

Contentment and minimalism go hand in hand. They can’t exist without one another. If you are a minimalist but not content with what you have, then why would you? Actually, contentment is essential even if you are not a minimalist. This is because being content means enjoying your life, and that is our goal in our everyday life. 

With that being said, it is hard. It’s like finding the sweet spot and then staying anchored in that holy place. But things happen. You might have a newborn and constantly need stuff. Or want to buy a bigger house, or want to change your style of clothes. And things add up. In the end, there are many things that we always wish for. Therefore there is no room for being content with what you have. 

Contentment and minimalism are not something that comes naturally to everyone. Some people may be more frugal by default, while others want to become minimalists because they find a benefit to it but it might be hard for them to find contentment alongside minimalism. 

However, I have developed a step-by-step approach that might help these people to achieve getting into that sweet spot between contentment and minimalism. 

But before I jump into that, I would like to share my experience on how I became content while living a minimalist lifestyle.

My story

Contentment has never come easily to me. Like many people, I have often found myself wanting more. But a while ago, I had a realization that shifted my mindset and helped me understand the importance of contentment in leading a happy and fulfilling life.

I used to get excited about a particular item and immediately buy it, only to find that the excitement and joy it brought me was short-lived. This was especially true for me when buying clothes. Soon enough, I would be searching for the next pair of pants to satisfy my desires. It was a never-ending cycle, and I realized that material possessions were merely a temporary cover for deeper issues in my life.

This realization has been truly life-changing for me. Now, when I feel the urge to buy something, I take a step back and ask myself if I truly need it, or if it will only offer temporary happiness. I remind myself (constantly) that what truly brings me joy and contentment are the things that cannot be bought: spending time with my family, enjoying moments of solitude and reflection, and pursuing my passions and interests. So simple, yet so complex, right?

While it’s not always easy, I continue to strive towards a minimalist lifestyle, with a focus on finding contentment in what I already have. I’ve found that by shifting my priorities away from material possessions, I’m able to live a more fulfilling and meaningful life, which empowers contentment and minimalism.

finding the sweet spot between contentment and minimalism

A step-by-step guide on how to promote contentment and minimalism in your life

1. Identify what makes you happy long-term.

When identifying what makes you happy long-term, it’s important to take a moment to clear your mind and really think about the things that bring you joy. This can be anything from spending time with loved ones, pursuing a hobby or passion, being in nature, or even just enjoying a quiet moment to yourself.

However, if you find that your list includes material possessions or activities like shopping, it’s important to ask yourself whether these things bring you pure happiness or whether they are simply a way to distract you from negative emotions or feelings of dissatisfaction. Many of us have been conditioned to believe that buying more things will bring us happiness, but in reality, this is often a temporary fix that doesn’t provide long-term fulfillment.

Consider whether you tend to go shopping when you are upset or feeling down. If so, this could be a sign that you are using shopping as a way to cope with negative emotions. It’s important to find healthier ways to deal with these emotions, such as talking to a trusted friend or family member, practicing mindfulness or meditation, or engaging in physical activity.

Related: 16 No Shopping Challenges

This step might help you enter the second step with more ease. 

2. Declutter your possessions

As a believer in the concept of “less is more”, I find that decluttering possessions is essential for experiencing contentment. That’s why I recommend taking a tour of your house and mindfully decluttering your belongings. This process can take a few months or longer, or if you prefer, you can declutter in a few days. The most important thing is to let go of items that add to your stress and anxiety. 

Remember, contentment doesn’t come from having everything, because that’s not possible. True contentment comes from realizing that you have enough, and that definition of “enough” will be different for everyone. 

Finding that balance and feeling a sense of “I have enough because I have less” can be liberating and help you achieve a more minimalistic lifestyle.

Decluttering your possessions can be a challenging process, but it’s important to remember that the benefits are worth it. It can lead to a sense of calm and clarity in your mind. You may even find that letting go of physical possessions can help you let go of emotional baggage as well.

Remember that decluttering is a continuous process, and it’s okay to take it one step at a time. By regularly re-evaluating your possessions and letting go of what you no longer need, you can maintain a more minimalistic and content lifestyle.

3. Let go mindfully of your possessions

This step might sometimes be overlooked. However, if you declutter your home and don’t fully let go of your stuff, physically or emotionally, then you might not be ready for contentment in your life. 

It’s not enough to simply get rid of the physical clutter in your home; you must also let go of the emotional attachment that you have to these items. This can be a difficult process, especially if you have a sentimental attachment to certain possessions, but it’s important to remember that these objects do not define you and do not hold the key to your happiness.

Reasons to finally let go of those items

  1. They may be holding you back from moving forward in your life. By holding onto things that you no longer need or use, you are preventing yourself from creating space for new opportunities and experiences. You may also be limiting your own personal growth and development by holding onto objects that are no longer serving a purpose in your life.
  2. It can help you to live a more sustainable and environmentally friendly lifestyle. By donating or recycling items that you no longer need, you are reducing the amount of waste that goes into landfills and helping to preserve the planet for future generations.
  3. It can be a liberating experience. It can free you from the burden of material possessions and allow you to focus on the things that truly matter in life, such as relationships, personal growth, and experiences. By living a minimalist lifestyle, you can create more space, time, and freedom in your life, leading to a greater sense of contentment and fulfillment.

4. Practice gratitude 

Practicing gratitude is a powerful tool to promote contentment and minimalism in your life, and it is a natural consequence of the last points. It involves training your mind to focus on the positive aspects of your life, and acknowledging the abundance that already exists, instead of always wanting more.

Related: 101 things to be grateful for even on gloomy days

While writing down things you are grateful for every day is a good practice, it is important to extend gratitude beyond just a daily list. Incorporating gratitude into your day-to-day activities can be even more impactful. For example, when you wake up in the morning, take a moment to appreciate your comfortable bed or when you sit down to eat a meal, take a moment to appreciate the food in front of you.

The practice of gratitude should not be limited to certain activities or moments of your day. It is a mindset that should be present in everything you do, whether it’s at work, at home, or out in the world. The more you practice gratitude, the more natural it becomes to see the good in your life.

By cultivating an attitude of gratitude, you begin to shift your focus away from what you lack and toward what you have. You become more aware of the things you have and how fortunate you are to have them, and you start to appreciate them more. This can help reduce feelings of stress, anxiety, and discontentment, and promote a greater sense of peace and contentment.

finding the sweet spot between contentment and minimalism

5. Embrace the ups and downs in your everyday life

Today, I wrote down in my journal that the world would be such a happier place if people would just understand that bad moments make good moments so much more precious. 

When we learn to appreciate the ups and downs of life, we begin to realize that even the difficult moments have value and can teach us important lessons. Instead of trying to avoid negative experiences, we can learn to embrace them as an essential part of our journey.

Think about it this way: If we only focused on the good moments in life, we would always be searching for the next high, the next thing to make us happy. But by accepting and embracing the bad moments, we can find a sense of peace and contentment in our lives, even during challenging times.

For me, learning to embrace the ups and downs of life has been a transformative experience. When I was younger, I used to get upset or frustrated whenever something didn’t go according to plan. But as I’ve grown older, I’ve learned to see those moments as opportunities for growth and learning. Of course, I sometimes struggle with that, but with time, I’ve developed a little bit of resilience and a greater sense of inner peace. And as a result, I feel much more content and fulfilled in my everyday life.

6. Live in alignment with your values and things that make you happy.

So we’ve gone through the process of identifying our values and what truly makes us happy, going through decluttering, and starting gratitude practices. And now, the final step is to actually live in alignment with those things. It’s like a big cherry on top of the sundae of contentment and minimalism.

Living in alignment with our values and happiness means being intentional about the choices we make. It means saying “no” to things that don’t align with our values, even if they seem tempting or popular. And it means saying “yes” to things that do align with our values, even if they’re a little scary or unconventional.

When we live in this way, we naturally attract more of what we want into our lives. We start to see opportunities that we might have missed before. We build relationships with people who share our values and support us in our pursuits. And most importantly, we feel a sense of contentment and fulfillment that comes from living a life that is true to ourselves.

Infographic: finding the sweet spot between contentment and minimalism

infographic on finding the sweet spot between contentment and minimalism

Quick tips on how to incorporate contentment and minimalism in your day-to-day life

Practice negative visualization

A negative visualization is a powerful tool for practicing contentment and minimalism. It involves intentionally imagining worst-case scenarios in order to appreciate what you already have and to avoid excessive attachment to material possessions.

You can ask yourself questions like: “What if I lose my job tomorrow? What would I do?” “How would I pay my bills?” “What kind of job could I find?” By visualizing these worst-case scenarios, you can start to appreciate your current job and the stability it provides. Even though you might not like it, try to be content with it and understand that you are lucky enough to get where you are!

Related: The Stoic Art of Negative Visualisation

Imagine yourself being 80 years old

Imagine yourself at 80 and ask yourself what you would regret not doing or what you would be proud of yourself doing. For instance, you may regret spending too much time accumulating material possessions instead of spending time with loved ones or pursuing meaningful experiences or hobbies. Alternatively, you may be proud of yourself for living a simple, intentional life that values relationships and experiences over material possessions.

It can be a very powerful exercise because it helps bring clarity and perspective to your values and priorities. It allows you to reflect on the decisions you make in the present and how they align with your long-term goals and aspirations

Think about material possessions as emotional luggage that you have to carry with you everywhere

It feels kind of exhausting, isn’t it? Always carrying with you emotionally all the possessions that you have. What if you just sell everything and be free of all of that weight that keeps you down?

Just go freely through life and not feel the responsibility to dust all of your belongings. Instead of taking care of all of your possessions, you should take care of yourself. Go experience life.

Even if you have kids (I do, if you are curious!), you can still be free of all those unnecessary toys that your kid doesn’t spend more than 5 seconds at a time playing with. Just let go and be free. And ultimately you will experience contentment. 

Related: Minimalism With Kids: Where to Start?

Go out in nature

Nature embodies the essence of contentment and minimalism. It reminds us that happiness and satisfaction can be found in the simplest things, such as a clear blue sky or the rustling of leaves in the wind. Yet, our modern way of living has disconnected us from this innate simplicity.

By taking the time to go out in nature, we can reconnect with this sense of contentment and minimalism. We can step away from the constant distractions and noise of the city and find peace in the stillness and beauty of the natural world.

As we immerse ourselves in nature, we can begin to appreciate the small things that make life meaningful. We can find joy in the chirping of birds, the gentle flow of a stream, or the colors of a sunset. These experiences can help us cultivate a deeper sense of gratitude and contentment in our lives. Furthermore, nature teaches us the value of minimalism.

Related: Feeling Disconnected: How to Reconnect to Yourself?

We can see that the most beautiful and sustainable systems are often the simplest ones. By embracing minimalism, we can simplify our lives and reduce our dependence on material possessions and consumerism.

Take a moment to slow down

In our modern society, we often equate success and happiness with productivity and busyness. We feel the need to constantly be doing something, achieving something, or working towards some goal. However, this mindset can leave us feeling stressed, anxious, and disconnected from the present moment.

One way to cultivate a sense of contentment and minimalism in our lives is to take a moment to slow down. Instead of constantly rushing from one task to the next, we can pause, take a deep breath, and be present in the moment while drinking a cup of coffee, or simply doing nothing. 

Slowing down can help us embrace minimalism and simplicity. When we are constantly on the go, we tend to accumulate more possessions, commitments, and distractions. However, by slowing down and focusing on what truly matters, we can simplify our lives and reduce our dependence on material things.

Related: How to Slow Down Life: Effective Tips

Final thoughts

Together, contentment and minimalism offer a path to a more meaningful and fulfilling life. By embracing the principles described above, we can find greater peace, happiness, and purpose in our daily lives.

Only by practicing one of those quick tips, or slowly starting on the process of achieving contentment and minimalism, you can notice a difference. It might be small but it might as well change your life by letting you connect to yourself and to those around you. 

Of course, It is not always an easy journey, but it is a journey worth taking for those who are willing to slow down, be present, and appreciate the beauty and simplicity of life.

30 Things I Stopped Buying as a Minimalist

things I stopped buying including plastic bags

After I became a minimalist, I realized that there were things that I stopped buying just because I noticed that I didn’t need them anymore.

One of the biggest changes that I made after becoming a minimalist was in the way that I shopped. Before, I would purchase items without giving much thought to whether or not I needed them. However, once I started paring down my possessions, I began to take a more critical eye on the things that I brought into my home.

As a result, I found myself stopping at the store less and less often, since I no longer felt the need to buy things just for the sake of buying them. Instead, I only purchased items when I had a specific purpose for them. This change has helped me to save both money and time and has made me feel less burdened by stuff.

What helped me to stop buying things?

Only by decluttering your house and getting rid of unneeded items, you are likely to find that you naturally stop buying things that you don’t need. However, if you find yourself struggling to break the habit of buying things that you don’t need, here are a few tips that helped me to change my shopping habits:

Asking questions to yourself

Sometimes I catch myself being so excited to have that thing that I want without thinking if I need it. So now, whenever I feel the urge to buy something, I ask myself a few questions

  • Do I need this?
  • Is this something that I will use often?
  • Will it bring value into my life?
  • Do I have another item that serves the same purpose?
  • Will it last me a long time?

If the answer to the questions doesn’t align with my goal of becoming a minimalist, then I know it’s not something I need to buy.

Wait for 24 hours before buying

I used to be an impulsive shopper and I would buy things on a whim without giving them much thought. However, now I make it a priority to wait for at least 24 hours before purchasing an item. This waiting period allows me to think more critically about whether or not I actually need the item and it has helped me to avoid making impulse purchases.

Make a list of things that you need (aka Wish List)

This is my favorite technique of them all. I usually have in my mind a list of things that I actually need (but if it’s easier for you, write it down). So, when I’m out shopping and I see something that I want, I ask myself if it’s on my list. If it’s not, then I know I don’t need it and I can walk away.

You see, consumerism creates needs. It doesn’t meet our needs, it creates needs. That is why when we go shopping we think that we need all those stuff.

So create your own needs instead of letting the companies create them for you.

If you need more tips, check out 16 Fun No Shopping Challenges Ideas

Things I stopped buying

1. Duplicates of things I already have

As I said earlier, when I go shopping, I ask myself “Do I have another item that serves the same purpose?”. This has helped me to avoid buying duplicates of things that I already have.

For example, I always catch myself looking for cups and mugs, although I have a few at home. So I have to remind myself that in this stage of life I am going to use the cups that I have and that are perfectly cozy and beautiful. Only after they will lose their usefulness, I will look for more.

2. Seasonal decor

I used to love buying seasonal decor items, but I found that I never really got much use out of them, and you probably know what I mean.

Storing that decor for almost a year in your attic or basement, and taking it out just for a few weeks, doesn’t make much sense.

You can enjoy Christmas, for example, without all those decorations. Just focus on the things that really matter and you will see that your life can be a lot simpler and more enjoyable.

3. Make-up products

It has been such a relief for me after I stopped buying these things. I used to spend a lot of time and money trying to look perfect.

Now I know that the most important thing is to feel good about myself, and that has nothing to do with the way I look on the outside. So I choose natural beauty, and self-confidence instead.

4. Skincare products

To be honest, for me it’s a mystery when I enter a skincare store what should I buy. So many different products with all kinds of weird functions that I don’t understand.

Nowadays, I only have a face cream that I use only when I feel like my face needs a little bit of nourishment and two types of oils for my body.

5. Nail products

Don’t get me wrong, I still have a nail cutter, but that’s it. No nail polish, no special treatments.

I stopped buying all those things because I realized that it was such a waste of time and energy to do your nails. You are beautiful as you are, you don’t need all those things to “look good”.

6. Perfume

On that note, I also stopped buying perfumes. I loved perfumes but now, I think it’s a waste of money. They are so expensive and have no value.

“Why wouldn’t I just buy a beautiful bouquet of flowers instead? It’s more natural than putting that perfume all day on me without knowing what was it made from.”

7. Cheap clothes

Did you know that clothes from the 70s and 80s were better quality and lasted longer? People didn’t buy new clothes every season; they used to wear the same clothes for years.

Nowadays, companies usually create clothes with a shorter lifespan. They use cheaper materials and lower-quality stitching and therefore the clothes fall apart after a few washes.

I have decided to invest in higher-quality clothes that will last me longer. And it’s not only about the quality, but it’s also about buying fewer clothes overall. A capsule wardrobe is a great way to do that.

8. Single-purpose kitchen appliances

I stopped buying those appliances that I would use only once in a while and that would take up so much space in my kitchen.

For instance, I had an ice cream maker that I used maybe twice a year. It was taking up so much space in my kitchen so I decided to get rid of it.

Now, I only have the essentials in my kitchen and I have to say: it is much airier and I feel like I can breathe better in my kitchen now.

Related: Extreme Minimalism – Owning Less Than 15 Items

9. Plastic bags

Probably everyone knows how it is to have a plastic bag with other plastic bags in it. It’s like a never-ending cycle.

I decided to break that cycle and I stopped buying plastic bags. Instead, I use reusable bags made from natural materials like cotton or linen.

10. Plastic water bottles

Just like with plastic bags, I decided to ditch those water bottles made from plastic.

I started using a reusable water bottle. It saves me tons of money and I don’t have to worry about plastic polluting our environment.

11. Accessories and jewelry

I stopped buying accessories and jewelry for three reasons.

  • First of all, I realized that I don’t need them to feel good about myself.
  • Second of all, I don’t want to support an industry that is often responsible for environmental degradation.
  • Moreover, I don’t feel comfortable wearing them. I want to be as light and as basic as possible.

12. Disposable items

Whenever I can, I try to buy reusable items instead of disposable ones. For instance, I use reusable straws, cups, and plates.

I know it might seem like a small thing, but if everyone would do that, we could save so much plastic and other materials from ending up in our landfills and polluting our planet.

Other disposable items that you can stop buying include:

  • Napkins
  • Coffee cups
  • Razor blades
  • Period pads

13. Books

I know the feeling of having a new book and the smell of a new book. But in all honesty, they are expensive and take up a lot of space.

Nowadays, I prefer to read books electronically. It is cheaper and more convenient if I go on a trip.

With that being said, I still have a small minimalist library at home with my favorite books.

14. CDs and DVDs

With the advent of streaming services, CDs and DVDs have become obsolete. I don’t see the need to buy them anymore when I can just listen to my favorite music or watch my favorite movies online.

15. Items on sale

Just because something is on sale, it doesn’t mean that you need to buy it. I used to fall into that trap all the time. I would see something on sale and I would think “I need to buy it because it’s such a good deal.”

Now, I ask myself “Do I really need this?” before I make any purchase. If the answer is no, then I don’t buy it.

An exception to this rule is if I have on my wish list an item that I have been wanting for a long time and it goes on sale. In that case, I would buy it.

16. Knick-knacks

Knick-knacks are those small trinkets that people usually put on shelves or display cabinets.

I used to have display cabinets full of these knick-knacks. And I remember that dusting those cabinets was such a pain.

Now, I don’t have any of those trinkets anymore and it has been such a relief. Now, I can actually dust my shelves without having to move a lot of things around.

17. Subscription boxes

Subscription boxes are a waste of money and resources. First of all, you are paying for something that you might not even want or need. Second of all, a lot of times these subscription boxes come with a lot of packaging.

And last but not least, you are adding more stuff to your life that you might not need.

I stopped buying subscription boxes and I haven’t looked back since.

18. Latest technology

Changing my phone every year used to be a thing for me. But not anymore.

Now, I only upgrade my phone when it is really necessary. For instance, when my old phone breaks or when the new phone has features that are relevant to my work.

The same goes for other gadgets and technology. I only buy them when I really need them.

19. Impulse purchases

I used to love those stores that sell things like cute plates, candles, cups, items for drawing, etc. I would go in there and I would see all these things that I wanted and I would buy them on a whim.

Now, I only buy things when I have a specific purpose for them. Again, if it’s not on my wishing list, I don’t buy it.

20. Cheap shoes

In my parent’s house, my sister, I, and my mom had a whole room dedicated to shoes. It was full of shoes of all sorts and brands.

And I wasn’t wearing more than half of my shoes. Now, I have only 3 pairs of shoes: one that I wear all the time, another one for the winter season, plus one for running/sport. And I only buy high-quality shoes that I know will last long.

21. Souvenirs

Some people say that you haven’t been anywhere if you don’t have souvenirs to show for it. But I don’t believe that.

I think that the experiences you have while traveling are more important than the things you can buy.

Now, instead of buying a lot of souvenirs, I take a lot of pictures. And if I really want to bring something back, I make sure that it brings value to me.

22. Travel-sized items

Do you really need travel-sized toothpaste? Or a mini shampoo?

Probably not. You can just buy the regular size and put it in a smaller container.

I stopped buying travel-sized items because I realized that I was wasting my money.

Related: Minimalist travel – everything you need to know

23. Out-of-season clothes

Is it familiar to you to buy a winter coat in the middle of summer? Or swimwear in the middle of winter?

I used to do that a lot. Why? Because it was cheaper to buy them off-season plus I wanted to feel the vibe of the season even when it wasn’t.

However, that meant that my closet was full of clothes that I wasn’t using. Now, I only buy clothes when I truly NEED them.

24. Gifts for others

I used to spend a lot of money on gifts for my friends and family, especially for Christmas. I had no idea if they even liked the gifts I got them.

That is why, instead of buying physical gifts for others, I try to come up with some activities that we can do together. For instance, going to an art class together instead of buying them a painting.

However, if I know for sure that a person wants a certain item, I would buy it.

25. Unnecessary decor

Clocks, vases, statuettes, and other types of home decor are the least of my priorities.

I would rather spend my money on things that are more practical, like useful kitchen appliances or going to the cinema with my husband.

Related: Minimalism and Hygge: Getting Cozy Without the Clutter

26. Free items

I know that it doesn’t fit that well in the “things I stopped buying” category, but I stopped taking free items that I don’t need.

For example, when I was at a conference, they were giving away tote bags with the conference’s logo. I took one because it was free. But then I realized that I have a lot of tote bags and I don’t use all of them.

Now, I don’t take freebies unless I know for sure that I will use them.

27. Items that I can’t afford

It sounds logical but is not. There are people that save money for years in order to buy things they can’t afford.

Let’s say you live with a minimum salary but want the most expensive car. You will save money for years and years until you have enough to buy it.

But is that car worth all the years you spent working hard and not being able to enjoy your life?

I stopped buying things that I couldn’t afford because I realized that it simply doesn’t make sense.

28. Items to impress others

There is this belief that you can integrate into a group only by owning certain items.

For instance, if you want to be part of the “popular girls in the school,” you need to have the latest iPhone.

But that doesn’t make any sense. You don’t need to own something to be liked by others. And if you do, then that group of people is not for you.

Now, I only buy things that I like and that make me happy, regardless of what other people think. I dress as I want and not like what is “in” at the moment.

29. Outfits for special occasions

We all have that one friend who always looks fabulous on every single occasion. And we also have that other friend who only wears sweatpants and a t-shirt.

I suppose the last one has more important things to think about than clothes. Now, I am not judging anyone. But I used to be like the first one.

I would buy a new outfit almost every time there was an event. And, of course, I would only wear it once. It was a waste of money and a waste of resources.

Nowadays, instead of buying a new outfit, I try to find something in my closet that I can wear. And I always find something that I feel confident in. If not, I would consider buying a new outfit.

30. Low-quality items

When I buy something, I want to make sure that it will last me a long time, so I don’t have to spend time and money to replace it.

That is why I stopped buying cheap and low-quality items. Even though they are cheaper in the short term, in the long term, they are more expensive because you will have to replace them more often.

Final thoughts

I am sure that there are even more things that I stopped buying but these are the main ones.

I hope this article will inspire you to think about your own spending habits and maybe even make some changes.

Do you have anything that you stopped buying? Why? Let me know in the comments below!

Cheers, Diana

Minimalism and Hygge: Getting Cozy Without the Clutter

minimalism and hygge

I live in a Scandinavian country, so I’m constantly inundated with the concepts of minimalism and hygge. In a nutshell, these two concepts usually go hand-in-hand no matter the circumstance. With that being said, in this article, I’ll show you how to make your space cozy and uncluttered, and what exactly hygge means for Danes.

Some people believe a minimalist home is similar to a museum: lacking warmth, being too clean, and being impersonal. When in reality, it is quite the opposite. Thanks to the focus on simple pleasures and the lack of clutter, a minimalistic house can actually be quite cozy.

You see, minimalism and hygge have one big thing in common: intentional living.

  • When you live minimally, you focus on what brings you joy and what is truly essential. This helps to get rid of the unnecessary clutter in your life, both physically and mentally.
  • As for hygge, it is about making your home a space of joy, comfort, and warmth. This can be done in many ways, but it usually includes simple pleasures like spending time with family and friends, lighting candles, and eating comforting foods.

So intentional living is at the heart of both minimalism and hygge. And when you combine the two, you can create a cozy home that is free of clutter so that you can focus on what is essential for your soul.

Minimalism and hygge

Let’s dive more into these two concepts.

What is minimalism?

In its simplest terms, minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of anything that distracts us from them. It is a lifestyle that encourages us to live more simply and intentionally.

So what does that look like?

For some people, it might mean living with fewer possessions. It might mean decluttering your home and removing anything that doesn’t bring you joy or serve a purpose. It might mean simplifying your wardrobe or your diet.

For others, minimalism might mean eliminating unnecessary clutter in order to create space for more important things. It might mean taking on fewer commitments, saying no more often, or making more margins in your schedule.

At its core, minimalism is about living more intentionally. It’s about removing the things that distract us from what is most important, so we can focus on what truly matters.

What is hygge?

Hygge is a Danish concept that can be difficult to translate. It is often described as a feeling of cozy contentment and well-being.

Hygge is about creating a warm, inviting atmosphere and enjoying the simple pleasures in life. It is about slowing down, being present, and savoring the moment.

Hygge is about intangibles like atmosphere, mood, and connection. It is about feeling like you belong, feeling comfortable, and feeling safe.

I have lived in Denmark for three years now. And what I can say about hygge in my personal opinion is that Danes love hanging out with friends. They don’t associate hygge with a space but rather with people. They can’t feel hygge without someone to share the moment. Danes are some of the world’s happiest people, and I believe hygge has a lot to do with that.

How can minimalism and hygge work together?

Certainly minimalism and hygge go in the same direction. These questions summarize why minimalism and hygge work together:

  • How do you want to get hygge if your house is messy?
  • How can you make energy for being hygge if you have so much stuff around?
  • Why would you want to be constantly cleaning and decluttering when you could just be enjoying your life?
  • What is the point of filling your life with material things when you can get much more fulfillment from simple things?

So, in short, minimalism and hygge go hand in hand because they both promote a lifestyle that is simple, clean, and enjoyable. If you want to maximize your hygge, minimalism is the way to go!

Similarities between minimalism and hygge lifestyle

When it comes to living a cozy life, both minimalism and hygge have a lot in common. Here are some of the similarities:

  • Both emphasize simplicity and getting rid of excess.
  • Both promote a focus on experiences over things.
  • Both consider most material possession unnecessary.
  • Both emphasize the importance of quality over quantity.
  • Both encourage living in the present moment.
  • Both emphasize the importance of community and connection.
  • Both promote a healthy relationship with material possessions.
  • Both encourage creativity and resourcefulness.

To summarize all of these similarities, both minimalism and hygge are about living a life that is simple, and meaningful.

Differences between minimalism and hygge lifestyle

While minimalism and hygge have a lot in common, there are also some key differences. Here are some of the ways they differ:

  • Minimalism is more about simplicity and getting rid of excess, while hygge is more about creating a cozy and comfortable environment while being around others.
  • Minimalism is more about striving to live with less, while hygge is more about savoring the simple pleasures of life.
  • Minimalism is in most cases about self-reliance and independence, while hygge is about finding comfort in the company of others.

In conclusion, minimalism and hygge are both about living a simple and cozy life. However, minimalism is more focused on living with less, while hygge is more concerned with creating a comfortable environment in the home and surrounding yourself with people you love.

The difference between visual clutter and hygge elements

There is a fine line between visual clutter and hygge elements. The key is to find a balance that works for you.

Visual clutter is anything that feels like it’s taking up space without serving a purpose. It can be anything from clothes that you never wear to knick-knacks that you don’t really need.

Hygge elements are things that make you feel good and add to the overall coziness of your home. They can be anything from candles to blankets to plants.

Keep in mind that it is possible to overdo the hygge elements so the space doesn’t feel inviting but rather heavy and full. So, as with everything in life, moderation is key.

Now that you know the difference between visual clutter and hygge elements, it’s time to get rid of the former and add more of the latter to your home.

Tips to make your space less cluttered

The first step to minimalist hygge is dealing with clutter. Here are some ideas to help you get started:

  • Get rid of anything that you don’t use or need. This includes clothes, shoes, books, knick-knacks, etc. If you haven’t used it in the past year, chances are you don’t need it.
  • Donate or sell anything that you don’t want or need. Not only will this declutter your space, but it will also make someone else’s day.
  • Try to be ruthless when it comes to decluttering. It can be hard to let go of things but remember that material possessions are not worth your happiness.
  • Organize your space. This will help you see what you have and make it easier to find things when you need them.
  • Keep your space clutter-free. This means regular decluttering and only bringing things into your home that you really need or want. Things on sale, or that are free, are no exceptions to this rule.

How to add hygge to your minimalist home?

If you live pretty minimally, it is quite easy to add in some elements of hygge without going too far off the deep end. Here are some ideas that won’t add to the clutter in your house but rather would add some value and enjoyment to your life, plus some aesthetics:

Related: 30 Things I Stopped Buying as a Minimalist

Cozy blankets and pillows

Blankets and pillows are definitely hygge. They make your home more comfortable and inviting. You probably know this already: cozying up under a blanket, with a cup of tea and a good book is one of the best things in life.

So why not make your home even cozier by adding some blankets and pillows? Doesn’t have to be many: just an extra comfy blanket and a few pillows to make your furniture more inviting.

Wool and cotton are great materials for cozy blankets and pillows

Fancy tea cups

There is nothing quite like sipping on a cup of tea in a beautiful cup. It just makes the experience that much more special. If you don’t have any fancy tea cups, now is the time to get some! Again, just enough of them for you and some of your friends that usually come over, so that everyone can have their own cup.

minimalism and hygge


Candles are such a simple and easy way to make your home cozier. They create a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Candles are calming. If you will ever come to Denmark during the autumn or winter, you will see almost every single window with a lit candle in it. That is how we deal with long and dark evenings.

If you don’t want to burn candles all the time, you can also get electric candles. They look and feel exactly like the real thing but without the hassle of having to light them.

Fairy lights

Fairy lights are another great way to make your home cozier. They are also very versatile. You can put them almost anywhere: in a jar, on a piece of furniture, around a frame… the possibilities are endless.

And they don’t have to be expensive either. You can find them pretty much anywhere these days.

What I like about them is that they don’t need any care or attention. You just hang them up and enjoy the soft light they provide.

Potted plants

Plants are great for adding some life to your home. Not only do they look good, but they also purify the air.

Although I call myself a minimalist, I have about 10 plants in my house. I just can’t help it, I love having them around. They are the only decor that I have in my house.

I would recommend getting plants that are easy to take care of, like succulents. That way, you won’t have to worry about them too much.


Books are the perfect addition to any home, but especially to a minimalist one. The good thing about them is that they don’t only work as a nice hygge decor but are also useful.

A few quality books on a bookshelf would never add to the clutter but only will enhance the feeling of coziness in your minimalist home.

Related: How to create a minimalist library?

The key takeaways about minimalism and hygge

Clutter and hygge can’t coexist

If you want a cozy ambiance and atmosphere, you need to get rid of clutter. Actually, that is why this article combines both terms minimalism and hygge: because only by living a minimalist lifestyle you can get hygge.

The feeling of hygge comes from having a cozy and comfortable home. But if your home is full of stuff, it will never be cozy. The more things you have, the more you have to worry about and take care of.

It is not about buying things

A lot of people think that they can buy their way into hygge. And while it is true that there are material things that can make your home more hygge, the true nordic coziness comes from people around you, from being personal and private with others. From being in the moment.

The idea is that you can’t get hygge without all the candles and blanket, but you need the right people around you. So don’t think that buying a bunch of stuff will make your home cozier.

It is about simple things

Having a cup of tea with a friend while doing some watercolor together, or some yoga, or just talking. That is hygge. It doesn’t need to be anything fancy, it can be very simple things. Even taking a walk in the park can be hygge if you are with the right people.

Minimalism fits in here because it is about enjoying the simple things in life and not having too much stuff. So enjoy your life, be hygge, and don’t let stuff get in the way.

Final thoughts

I hope you found this article helpful and that you understand a bit better how these two concepts go together.

Remember that minimalism and hygge are two very different things. Minimalism is a lifestyle choice while hygge is more of a feeling or an atmosphere.

But they do go hand in hand because only by decluttering your life and getting rid of unnecessary stuff, you can make room for what really matters: people and experiences.

So go out there and enjoy your life, in a cozy and comfortable way!

Cheers, Diana

Unwanted Gifts: How to Handle & Prevent Receiving Them

a girl receiving unwanted gifts

If you are a human being, you have probably received some unwanted gifts at some point in your life: for Christmas, birthdays, mother’s day, father’s day, etc. And you certainly know that feeling: the disappointment, and the forced smile. Not only that but after the initial reaction comes the question of what to do with the gift. And that is what we are going to handle today.

From a minimalist point of view, and not only, keeping unwanted gifts is a bad idea for several reasons:

  • They take up space in your home that could be used for better purposes
  • They add to the clutter and chaos in your life
  • They occupy your mind space and energy, which could be used for more positive things
  • They could be used by someone who really needs them
  • They just lose their value over time since they are not being used

So keeping unwanted gifts is a no-no. But what can you do with them?

What to do with unwanted gifts?

If you have received a gift that you do not want or need, here are some options of what you can do with it:

  1. Politely return it to the person who gave it to you
  2. Donate it to charity, friends, or family
  3. Sell it
  4. Return it to the store
  5. Regift it to someone who (you think) would appreciate it
  6. Upcycle it
  7. Keep it (for a while)

Let’s explore these options in more detail.

Further reading: The ultimate minimalist list of things to get rid of

1. Politely return it to the person who gave it to you

Returning a gift to the person who gave it to you can be a bit tricky and it really depends on the situation. It requires a lot of tactfulness, so think about it carefully before you take this step.

Also, it depends on the person.

There are people that put a lot of effort and time into choosing a gift and they would be really hurt if you returned it. On the other hand, there are people who would understand perfectly and would appreciate your sincereness. There might also be situations where the person who gave you the gift actually likes it and might use it themselves.

Moreover, it might depend on how close you are to the person. If it is someone really close to you, like a family member or a good friend, they might not take it too badly. Whereas, if it is someone you are not that close to, they might be offended.

If you decide to return the gift, make sure you do it in a gentle and tactful way. Thank the person for the gift and explain why you are returning it. For example, you can say that you already have one, that you are moving and downsizing, that it doesn’t fit, or you simply don’t feel the need to have it.

2. Donate it to charity, friends, or family

One option you have is to donate the unwanted gift to charity, friends, or family. This is the most heartwarming, selfless, and fulfilling option. It will make you feel good knowing that your gift is going to someone who really needs or wants it and that it will bring them joy.

There are many charities that would gladly accept your donation, so do some research and find one that you resonate with.

As for friends and family, think about someone close to you who might really appreciate the gift. For example, if you received a book that you don’t want, maybe your friend loves to read and would be thrilled to get it.

Further reading: 20 Main Characteristics of a Minimalist Person

3. Sell it

If you have an unwanted gift, don’t be afraid to sell it! This can provide some extra cash for things that are important in life and also get rid of something we might not need. You can sell it online on platforms like eBay or Craigslist, or you can have a garage sale.

A great tip for online sales is to take quality pictures of the product and write a comprehensive description. This will help you sell it quicker and hopefully for a good price.
As for the garage sale, make sure to advertise your garage sale online and in your neighborhood ahead of time. This will help attract more people and hopefully sell your items quickly.

4. Return it to the store

Did you know that you can return an item to the store without even having the receipt?

The Guardian has an article about this, telling that customers have the right to return an item, or at least to exchange it.

Of course, it gets more complicated if you are not the actual customer but you could at least try to exchange it for something else that you actually want or need.

Now, you are very lucky if the person who gave you the gift left the receipt. It means that they know about unwanted gifts and they don’t want you to feel bad about it. So, if you have the receipt, simply take the item back to the store and exchange it or get the money back.

5. Re-gift it to someone who (you think) would appreciate it

I think it is ok to re-gift gifts. Don’t you think so?

I mean, if the persons are not connected in any way and you are pretty sure that the other person would like the gift, then why not?

Let’s take the classic picture frame example. If you receive a picture frame as a gift but it’s simply not your thing, you can re-gift it to someone else. You can actually put a picture of the two of you in the frame and then offer it. Especially if you know that the other person has a gallery wall or is simply into picture frames.

There are so many benefits if you do that:

  • The other person will be happy because they will receive a gift that they actually like.
  • You will make space in your house because you won’t have an unwanted gift taking up space.
  • You will feel good because you made someone else happy.

6. Upcycle it

If you are not familiar with upcycling, it basically means reusing material in order to create something new.

For example, you could turn a pair of jeans into a cute denim purse or some curtains into a pillowcase.

These are of course not the best ideas, but there are endless possibilities when it comes to upcycling and it’s a great way to give an unwanted gift a new life.

What I like about upcycling is that it makes you get creative, and pushes you to look at things in a different way.

Also, the person who gave you the gift would be happy to see that you are using it in a different way and that it’s not just sitting in a box somewhere.

7. Keep it (for a while)

You might not feel ready to get rid of the gift right away, and that’s ok.

Maybe you want to wait until you find the perfect person to give it to or you want to wait until you have the time to upcycle it.

Whatever the reason, it’s ok to keep it for a while, even though it is going to occupy your space.

What you can do is to put it in a box and write a “due date” for it. Or mark it in your calendar. This will help you remember that it’s there and that you need to do something with it.

And if you don’t, you can always give it away to charity.

Related: How to Get Rid of Sentimental Items With No Regret?

How to prevent receiving unwanted gifts?

You probably feel like it’s not in your power to prevent receiving unwanted gifts, but there are actually some things that you can do.

It’s not easy, for sure. But hopefully, it will help you receive gifts that you actually need, or not receive one at all if that is what you want.

Openly tell people what you need

In case you do actually need something, then the best option is to tell people that you know are going to buy you a gift that you need.

It’s going to make not only your life easier but also theirs! I mean, it is so time-consuming to find “the perfect” gift, so why not make it easier for them?

They will definitely appreciate it.

On the other hand, if you know that someone is going to buy you a gift but you don’t actually need anything, you can tell them that or tell them to buy you some food, or some experiences.

It’s not impolite to do so, and it will save everyone the trouble.

Make a list of the things that you need and share it with your loved ones

Did you know about WishList Apps? Basically, you can add the things that you want or need to your “list” and then share it with your family and friends.

Some popular platforms are Amazon Wishlist and Etsy Wishlist.

This way, you will avoid receiving unwanted gifts, because people can choose something from your list.

Don’t be shy to try it. I know, it can feel a bit weird at first, but everyone is going to benefit from it (unless, of course, the person that you share the wishlist with didn’t intend to give you anything, oops).

You can also try the old-fashioned way and simply make a list of the things that you need and share it with your loved ones.

Don’t buy gifts for anyone

A great way to prevent receiving unwanted gifts is not to give any yourself!

I mean, sometimes people offer gifts because they feel like they have to, because last time you gave them one, so it’s only fair that they give you one back.

But what if you simply don’t? It will probably feel weird at first, but it will soon become the new normal.

That is what I do with my husband. It’s not like I don’t want to give him gifts, but we simply don’t need anything and we would rather spend the money on something else.

Tell them that you value experiences much more than material possessions

Telling your loved ones that you prefer to spend your money on experiences rather than material possessions is a great way to prevent receiving unwanted gifts.

It’s not that you don’t appreciate the effort, but you would rather go on a trip together or buy tickets to a concert than receive yet another coffee mug.

So emphasize to others that you will rather receive experiences, like a ticket to a concert, than material gifts.

In other words, ask for the gift of presence, not presents.

Related: 10 Reasons Why Material Things Don’t Make You Happy

Ask for consumables

Similar to the last point, you can also ask for consumables, like food or drinks.

This way, you are not going to receive anything that will occupy your space and that you will have to find a place for.

It’s the best gift that you can receive, and it doesn’t miss the spot, because, let’s be honest, who doesn’t love food?

Start a fundraising campaign

Do you know that Facebook every year before your birthday allows you to start a fundraising campaign for your favorite charity? Or even for a personal cause.

You can do the same on other platforms, like GoFundMe.

Starting a fundraising campaign is a great way to prevent receiving gifts that you don’t need because people can donate to your campaign instead.

And you can use the money raised to buy something that you actually need. Or you could donate them to a charity of your choice.

It’s a win-win situation!

a girl receiving unwanted gifts

Break the habit

Do you have that aunt that gives you all the time the same gift and every time it doesn’t serve any purpose to you?

Or that cousin that buys you something that you will never use?

You can try to break the habit by calling in advance and asking if you can go gift shopping with them, or if they want to go to a concert/movie instead of wasting their money on a gift.

Don’t forget to say thank you

Gifts are meant to be a sign that you care for that person, that you were thinking of them this Christmas, or whatever.

So, any gift, even an unwanted one, has a good intention behind it.

So, when you receive a gift that you don’t need or want, don’t forget to say thank you and mean it.

The best way to do it is to show your appreciation for the thought behind the gift, and not the gift itself.

Final thoughts

Unwanted gifts can be such a weight on your shoulders, but hopefully, these tips will help you to deal with them in the best way possible!

Remember, it’s the thought that counts, so don’t let an unwanted gift get you down. Get creative with it, or find a way to make use of it in your everyday life, or in someone else’s life.

You can also use it as an opportunity to teach your loved ones about your lifestyle and what you value most in life.

I hope these tips were helpful, and I wish you all the best.

Cheers, Diana

Further reading: 20 Minimalist Blogs That You Will Enjoy Reading in 2022

The Basics of Minimalism: a Guide for Beginner Minimalists

the basics of minimalism, a guide for beginner minimalists

Minimalism is powerful. That is why you have to learn the right way basics of minimalism. It takes self-control and a lot of motivation to achieve this way of life. But it is worth it because this lifestyle has so many benefits that can make your life easier and more enjoyable.

Have you tried getting on a minimalist journey but failed? Or do you want to learn about this way of living so you can start reaping its benefits? Maybe you are the complete opposite of a minimalist and you feel like your life is way too messy and that a minimalist lifestyle is a solution to your problem.

Whatever your reasons are, minimalism is going to be a great life change for you if you do it the right way.

I see a lot of people starting their minimalist journey in the wrong place, and because of that, they often give up or get overwhelmed and go back to their old ways. I know why, and I am here to help you avoid making the same mistakes. Or finally getting on the right track. Sometimes all you need is just some basics of minimalism.

A word of encouragement

Whether you:

  • have a family
  • are a student
  • are a stuff hoarder
  • are a shopaholic
  • think that you have way too many things and can’t do anything about it
  • your family members are not interested in minimalism

…you still can become a minimalist.

I’ve seen people that were hoarders for dozen years and they managed to get rid of everything in a matter of months. And let me remind you: hoarding is a disorder, and if somebody with a hoarding disorder can do it, you definitely can.

This means that there are ways how to become a minimalist for everyone. You just have to learn the basics of minimalism, find what works for you and be consistent with it.

What is minimalism?

Let’s start with the basics of minimalism.

Minimalism is a way of life where you focus your time and energy on things that are meaningful and valuable to you and you get rid of everything else.

When I say “get rid of”, I don’t mean only the physical stuff. I am talking about getting rid of the mental clutter as well, such as:

  • toxic relationships
  • negative thoughts and emotions
  • time-wasting activities, like cleaning all the time

Anything that doesn’t make you happy or doesn’t positively contribute to your life can be considered something you should get rid of. This is one of the most important basics of minimalism.

Benefits of being a minimalist

The one most important benefit of minimalism is that it is life-changing. You can get from being tired all the time, frustrated, anxious, and stressed to feeling energetic, happy, and free.

Here are some more reasons why you should become a minimalist:

  • you will have more free time for things that bring meaning because you will get rid of time-wasting activities like cleaning all the time or watching too much TV.
  • you will save money because you will get rid of unnecessary expenses and you will learn how to live with less.
  • you will be more productive because you will get rid of distractions and you will focus on what is important.
  • you will feel lighter emotionally because you will get rid of toxic relationships and negative thoughts but also physical clutter.
  • you will have more energy because you will get rid of things that drain your energy.
  • you will be freer, both physically and mentally, because you will get rid of the stuff that weighs you down.
  • you will be able to live more intentionally because you will be more aware of your surroundings and you will focus on what is important to you.
  • you will be happier, more relaxed, and more content because you will focus on things that bring you joy.
  • you will support the environment because you will consume less and you will waste less.

The Basics of Minimalism

To make it easier for you to get into a minimalist lifestyle, I’ve compiled a list of the basics of minimalism to get started.

These are a bunch of tips, ideas, and principles that will help you learn the basics of minimalism. They have helped me to become a minimalist and I’m sure they will help you too.

1. Be intentional about what you own

Life gets busy, and we often find ourselves with things we never really wanted or needed in the first place. Your mental space gets full of the constant “noise” of stuff and it’s hard to focus on what truly matters.

The best way to combat this is to be intentional about what you own. Be mindful of the things you bring into your life.

Not only that, but look at the things that you already own. Do they all bring you joy? Do they bring value to your life or make your life easier in any way?

As Chuck Palahniuk said, “The things you own end up owning you. It’s only after you lose everything that you’re free to do anything.”

It is because we often put so much importance and value on the things we own, that they end up owning us. So, be intentional about what you own, and don’t let the things you own control you.

Related: 9 ways to be intentional every day

2. Choose your battles wisely

In our society, we are constantly bombarded with choices. Should you buy this or that? Should you order pizza or sushi?

There are so many choices to make that it can be overwhelming. And often, we make choices that we later regret because we didn’t think them through properly.

The key is to choose your battles wisely. Not every choice that you make needs to be a life-altering decision.

Here’s a simple way to do it:

Whenever you are faced with a choice, like whether to buy something or not, ask yourself “Will this choice bring me closer to my goals or further away from them?”

If the answer is closer, then go ahead and make the choice. But if the answer is further away, then maybe it’s not worth it.

Do the same with the stuff that you already own, and ask yourself if it’s bringing you closer to your goals or further away. If it’s the second option, just let it go.

3. Have a place for everything

One of the basics of minimalism is that everything has its place. There are no random piles of stuff lying around, everything is in its place. And I mean it, your countertops (the places where usually all the random stuff accumulates) should be clear too.

If your earphones don’t have a specific place in the house, where do you think it is going to end up? More than likely, it will just become another pile of stuff on your countertop.

When everything has its place, it’s easier to keep your house clean and tidy. It also makes it easier to find things when you need them.

4. Get rid of distractions

In our constantly busy society, it’s easy to get caught up in things that don’t truly matter and lose focus on what to do.

Social media, TV, and even our phones can be huge distractions that prevent us from living in the moment and enjoying our lives.

A great way to combat this is to get rid of distractions or at least minimize them.

For example, if you find yourself mindlessly scrolling through social media, uninstall the app from your phone or at least turn off the notifications. You can also set specific times when you allow yourself to use certain distractions.

You don’t even know how much negativity and useless information you’re exposed to daily. Instead, you could spend that time on some self-care activities, reading a positive book, or spending time with your loved ones.

5. Practice mindfulness

I think mindfulness became such a popular thing, that some of us are like “Oh, ok, what is the next advice, I already know this one”. When in reality, we are not even close to mastering it.

Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment and not letting your thoughts wander off to the past or future.

It sounds easy, but it’s quite difficult to do. The key is to be aware of your thoughts and when they start wandering off, to bring them back to the present moment. And you can become better at this only if you do it regularly, like for the rest of your life.

Mindfulness and minimalism go hand in hand because when you are present, you are more likely to appreciate the things that you have and less likely to want more stuff.

6. Realize that stuff doesn’t make you happy

One of the basics of minimalism is to be happy with less. Why? Because stuff doesn’t make you happy.

It might give you a temporary feeling of happiness, but it doesn’t last. The feeling quickly fades away and you are left with the same level of happiness that you had before you bought the thing.

Don’t believe me? Just think about the last time you bought something that you wanted. How long did the feeling of happiness last? A few hours? A day?

Sure, it might make your life easier, and more comfortable but it doesn’t make you happy. In fact, we are naturally prone to be unhappy. So why bother wanting that thing?

You can be happy with less because happiness comes from within. It comes from our relationships, our experiences, and our thoughts and attitude toward life.

Related: 10 Reasons Why Material Things Don’t Make You Happy

7. Don’t compare yourself to others

When you live a minimalist lifestyle, you don’t own much. And therefore it is easy to compare yourself to others who have more.

It’s easy to look at someone else’s life and think “I wish I had what they have”. But you need to realize that those people are not happy just because they have more stuff.

They might have more stuff, but they might also have more debt, more bills, and more to worry about.

Also, the grass is always greener on the other side. You don’t know what someone else’s life is really like. They might have a lot of stuff, but they might also be really unhappy.

The best way to avoid comparison is to focus on your own life and what makes you happy. Be grateful for what you have and don’t worry about what someone else has.

Related: Comparison is the Thief of Joy: But It Doesn’t Have to Be

8. Learn to let go

One of the most important things to do if you want to live a minimalist lifestyle is to learn to let go.

To let go not only physically, but also emotionally and mentally.

This means that you need to be able to let go of your possessions, but also your grudges, resentments, and negative thoughts.

Sometimes even when you think that you let go of something, it’s still holding you back. It feels you with negative energy.

Instead of that, you could simply let go and fill that space with positivity, love, and gratitude.

Mistakes to avoid when becoming a minimalist

As I said before, I see a lot of people begin their minimalist lifestyle in the wrong spot, and as a result, they give up or become frustrated.

To help you avoid making the same mistakes, here are the most common ones I see people make:

Decluttering while still acquiring new things

This is probably the most common mistake I see people make. They reward themselves with acquiring new things after they declutter.

So they declutter their closet and then go shopping and buy new clothes. Or they clear out their garage and then buy new tools.

This way, you are not decluttering, you are just moving the stuff around.

The key to becoming a minimalist is to change your mindset from “I need more things” to “I have enough”.

And this is what leads me to mistake nr 2.

Not being content with what you have

Contentment is key when it comes to minimalism. You need to be content with what you have, otherwise, you will always want more and more things.

This doesn’t mean that you can’t ever desire anything new, but it does mean that you should appreciate the stuff that surrounds you and be thankful for it. Be grateful for your clothes, for your furniture, for your home.

If you learn to be content with what you have, you won’t feel the need to acquire more and more things.

Not decluttering enough

While it is true that you shouldn’t get rid of 90% of your belongings, it is also true that you shouldn’t keep everything just because.

There are a lot of people who declutter their homes but they still have too much stuff.

Let’s say you start decluttering your closet. And you get rid of about 20% of them but there are still tons of them. So many that you can’t organize them and make them all visible.

Do you think it is going to benefit you in any way? Are you going to see the benefits of decluttering if your closet is still full of clothes?

No, you won’t.

So don’t stop decluttering until you see results reflecting on you. Until you feel lighter and freer.

Decluttering the wrong way

Some people when declutter don’t have a specific plan in mind or a specific goal. So they just start decluttering without knowing where to stop or what their end goal is.

The result? Most of the time they give up before they even start seeing results.

Related: 10 steps on starting decluttering when overwhelmed by the mess

To avoid this, you need to know some things before you start decluttering:

Ask yourself these questions while decluttering

  • When was the last time I used this?
  • Do I have a duplicate of this item?
  • Does this bring me joy?
  • Is this essential to my life?
  • Does it make my life easier?
  • Would I buy this again if I didn’t have it?

Answering these questions will help you declutter more efficiently and it will help you focus on the things that truly matter and that you NEED.

Let go of sentimental items

Sentimental items are a big thing. We all have them and we all find it hard to get rid of them. And they just clutter our space, get dusty, and weigh us down.

We think that the physical object brings all the memories back, so we hold on to them. But that’s not true. The memories are in our minds, in our hearts. They are not in the physical object.

A great tip is to take a photograph of the sentimental item and then let go of it. Make a folder on your computer called “Sentimental items” and save all the photos there.

Related: How to Get Rid of Sentimental Items With No Regret?

If in doubt, let go of it

This is a great rule of thumb when it comes to decluttering. If you are unsure about an item if you are debating whether or not to keep it, just let it go.

Most of the time, you will not remember at all that this item even existed. And if you do and feel the urgent need to have it, you can always buy it again. But trust me, you will be much ahead without it.

a girl overwhelmed by clutter because she doesn't know the basics of minimalism

Donate, recycle, or through away after decluttering

Sometimes after decluttering we postpone the next step, which is to get rid of the stuff we don’t want or need. We say things like “I’ll donate this later” or “I’ll give this away to a friend”. But later never comes and the stuff just sits there, STILL cluttering our space.

So, after you declutter, make sure to donate, recycle, or through away the stuff immediately. Set the time for it and make sure to do it.

Forget to express gratitude

Do you own something that you wanted for a long time? Let’s say you always wanted to have your own house or that food processor.

Ok, now you have it. Do you take it for granted? Do you ever stop and think about how grateful you are for having it?

Or do you just desire something else and forget to appreciate what you already have?

Be grateful for everything you own, no matter how big or small it is.

I remember thinking that “Only if I lived in that house I would be happy”. Now I live here, in my dream house, but sometimes, I still find myself wanting something else and forgetting to appreciate what I have.

Practicing gratitude is a great way to become more mindful about the things you own and it will help you declutter your mind from the constant desire for more.

Related: How to Write a Gratitude List? – A Complete Guide

Final thoughts

Remember, minimalism is a lifestyle, not a destination. It’s a journey, not a race. And there is no finish line.

You can start living a minimalist lifestyle today, and you can continue on this journey for the rest of your life.

Wherever you are right now: you have too many clothes, a big family, a lot of debt, or 10 cats, it’s never too late to start living a minimalist lifestyle.

Move slowly but surely and don’t try to do everything at once. Just focus on one area of your life and work on that.

Also, realize that there is no perfect way to live a minimalist lifestyle. You don’t have to follow all the rules, and you don’t have to do everything that other minimalists do.

Find your own way and do what works for you.

Just remember the basics of minimalism: live with less, focus on what’s important, and let go of what doesn’t serve you. And most importantly, enjoy the journey!

I hope you got an idea about what the basics of minimalism are and it has inspired you to get started or to keep going.

Cheers, Diana

Minimal Capsule Wardrobe: How to Build One?

minimal capsule wardrobe

Having a minimal capsule wardrobe can be a great way to save money and simplify your life. By only owning a few essential items, you can reduce clutter and make getting dressed each day much more manageable.

Most people would love a minimal capsule wardrobe but have no idea where to start. It gets overwhelming and it feels like a minimal capsule wardrobe is not for you, you need to put too much effort into it and don’t even know if it’s going to lead you in the right direction.

Whether it is because you don’t know your style, you have too many clothes, or simply because you don’t know how to start, I have created the perfect solution for you. It’s going to make your minimal capsule wardrobe journey so much easier.

What is a capsule wardrobe?

A minimal capsule wardrobe is a collection of a few essential items that can be mixed and matched to create many different looks.

Capsule wardrobes are usually divided into a few basic items that you wear all the time and items for each season that have to be stored away until next year. This way you can have a small number of items that you love and use all the time, without having the visual noise and excess of a larger wardrobe.

The color palette

There is a misconception that a minimal capsule wardrobe has to contain neutral colors like black, white, and grey. But that’s not true at all! You can have a capsule wardrobe with any colors you want.

The important thing is that they match well together and you feel good wearing them.

If you love bright colors, then make that your capsule wardrobe theme! The same goes for prints and patterns. You can have a capsule wardrobe with all different colors and prints as long as they go together.

It all depends on your style

A minimalist capsule wardrobe doesn’t have to be restrictive or boring. It can be whatever you want it to be!

If you’re more of a classic dresser, you can build a capsule wardrobe around timeless pieces like a white button-down shirt, a black blazer, and a well-fitting pair of jeans.

If you’re more of a bohemian, you can build a capsule wardrobe around flowy dresses and tops, distressed denim, and earthy tones.

You can even have a different style for each season! For example, in the winter you might want to focus on cozy sweaters and jeans, while in the summer you might want to focus on something more formal or edgy.

In the end, it depends on your seasonal mood and overall style. The idea is to have clothes that match and that you love.

What is not included in a capsule wardrobe?

Again, there is this misconception that a minimal capsule wardrobe also contains things like underwear, socks, and pajamas. But it’s not true.

I mean, look at the definition of a capsule wardrobe. And then think if you need your socks to match your blouse. I don’t think so.

A capsule wardrobe only contains clothes and accessories that you would wear in public.

So here is the list that is not included in a capsule wardrobe:

  • underwear
  • socks
  • pajamas
  • gym clothes
  • hiking clothes
  • swimsuits
  • formal wear

That being said, it doesn’t mean that you need to have a ton of the things listed above. Keep it minimum. For example, you probably only need one pair of hiking shoes and one pair of gym shoes. Less is more.

How many clothes should be in a capsule wardrobe?

This is a cliche answer but it is completely up to you!

However, I have a few anchor points to make it easier for you. You will need around:

  • 25 basic/everyday&everyseason clothes
  • 10 clothing pieces for each season
  • And a few more clothes for special occasions

You might be thinking that this is still a lot of clothes. But again, a capsule wardrobe it’s about having a smaller number of high-quality clothes that you love and that match well between them.

It’s not about having a lot of clothes that you never wear and that are just taking up space in your closet.

The benefits of having a capsule wardrobe

There are so many benefits to having a capsule wardrobe!

Saving money

When you have a smaller number of clothes that perfectly fit your style and needs, you don’t feel the need to go out and buy new clothes all the time. You know what you have and you know what works for you, so you’re not wasting your money on things you don’t need.

More options with fewer clothes

It might sound counterintuitive, but it’s true. When you have a capsule wardrobe, you have a smaller number of clothes to choose from but you can create more outfit combinations. This is because all of your clothes go together!

You save time and energy

When you have a capsule wardrobe, getting dressed in the morning is so much easier. You don’t have to spend hours sifting through your closet trying to find something to wear, you already know what works and what doesn’t, so getting dressed is a breeze.

You feel good in what you’re wearing

You’re always going to feel confident and stylish, no matter what you’re wearing.

You support ethical fashion

When you have a capsule wardrobe, you’re more likely to buy high-quality, ethically made clothes. This is because you’re not buying clothes just for the sake of buying them. You’re being more intentional with your purchases, which is better for both you and the environment.

You are being more intentional

In general, having a capsule wardrobe makes you more mindful of your clothing purchases. You think about what you need and what will work with the clothes you already have. This helps you to avoid impulsive purchases and to only buy things that you truly love and will wear often.

Related: 35 Intentional Living Quotes to Make the Most Out of Your Life

Fast fashion vs slow fashion

A big reason why a minimal capsule wardrobe is so beneficial is that it helps you to avoid fast fashion.

Fast fashion is the idea of buying a lot of cheap, trends-based clothing. It’s the complete opposite of a capsule wardrobe, which is focused on high-quality, timeless pieces.

The problem with fast fashion is that it’s not sustainable. The clothes are often made in unethical and unsustainable ways and they end up in landfills after being worn a few times because of their poor quality.

Slow fashion, on the other hand, is all about buying fewer, better-made pieces. The clothes are made to last and they’re made in sustainable and ethical ways.

When you have a capsule wardrobe, you’re automatically buying slow fashion pieces because you’re only buying what you need and what you’ll wear for a long time.

This is better for both you and the environment!

Use what you have

Before we start with the steps on how to build your capsule wardrobe, I want to mention that you don’t need to shop all your capsule wardrobe. You are mostly going to use what you have.

I mean, who has the money to go out and buy an entirely new wardrobe? Not me!

You can definitely buy a few key pieces to add to your capsule, and I will guide you later on what those pieces might be. But for the most part, you’ll be using what’s already in your closet.

Whatever you do, don’t get rid of everything in your closet, and start from scratch. That’s a waste of time, money, and resources.

A step-by-step guide on how to build your minimal capsule wardrobe

This is the guide I wish I had when I was first starting out! If you’re feeling overwhelmed, don’t worry. Just take it one step at a time and you’ll get there.

Look for style inspiration

Before you start building your capsule wardrobe, it’s helpful to have an idea of the kind of style you want. Look for style inspiration online or in magazines. This will help you to figure out what kind of pieces you need to look for.

The best place to start is Pinterest. You can search for specific items or just general style inspiration. Pay attention to versatile pieces, and that you can see yourself wearing over and over again.

Also, think about the colors you want to include in your capsule. Do you want a neutral palette or are you looking to add some color?

You don’t need to have everything figured out from the start, but it’s helpful to have a general idea of the kind of style you’re going for.

Keep in mind that you might be a combination of more styles, but one of them will be predominant. For instance, you might have a predominant casual style with a bit of romantic and formal style.

Think about your lifestyle

What do you usually do during the week? Do you go to an office job? Do you exercise a lot? Or do you have a lot of hanging out with friends?

Your lifestyle should dictate what kind of capsule wardrobe you build. If you have a more casual lifestyle, you might not need as many dressy items. But if you have a more formal lifestyle, you might need quite a lot of them.

A great tip is to think in percentages. Let’s say that you are working 40% of your time and your work requires quite a formal style, it means that you need 40% of your clothes to be suitable for work.
Then, about other 40-50% should be suitable for your free time and the rest of 10-20% can be dedicated to special occasions or parties.

Start sorting all of your clothes

Now it’s time to take everything out of your wardrobe! Yes, everything.

This seems daunting, but it’s necessary in order to get a good idea of what you have and what you need.

Once everything is out, divide it into three piles: keep, give away, and maybe.

  • The keep pile is for the clothes that you love and wear often.
  • The giveaway pile is for the clothes that you don’t wear or that you don’t love. These are the pieces that you’ll be getting rid of.
  • The maybe pile is for the clothes that you’re not sure about.

The maybe pile

At this point, you might have a ton of clothes in your maybe pile and little to no clothes in the giveaway pile. And that is totally ok. We will start solving this problem right now.

Go through each piece of clothing and ask yourself these questions:

  • When was the last time I wore it? Was it more than 2-3 weeks ago?
  • Does it fit me well?
  • Do I feel good when I wear it?
  • Is it comfortable?
  • Does it reflect my style? Or my personality? (Use your intuition.)
  • Is it timeless or is it a trend piece?

These questions will guide you in deciding whether or not to keep a piece of clothing.

If you still can’t decide, ask yourself this question: “If I saw this piece in a store right now, would I buy it?” If the answer is no, get rid of it.

Related: The Complete Guide on How To Get Rid of Clothes

Get rid of duplicates

You might still have a lot of clothes. And again, that is ok.

Go through your clothes and look for duplicates. Do you have two black t-shirts? Or three pairs of jeans in the same style?

Oh, I know, they are all comfy but we are trying to maximize the number of outfits with minimum clothes. That is the point of a capsule wardrobe.

You don’t need two of everything. So, get rid of the duplicates and keep only one of each item.

Remember: It is ok to have the same T-shirt but in a different color. What we don’t want is to have the same T-shirt in the same color.

Check the ratio between tops and bottoms

Right now you might have too many shirts and not enough pants or too many pants and not enough shirts.

This needs to be solved.

The ideal ratio is 30/70. This means that you need about 30% bottoms and 70% tops. But this is just a general guideline. You can adjust it according to your lifestyle and your preferences.

The idea is to try to get to a point when the proportion feels balanced to you.

Keep in mind: You want your clothes to match and be interchangeable. This is what we try to do when we build a capsule wardrobe.

Fill the gaps

This is one of the most important steps of all. Filling the gaps. This is when you need to observe, be creative, and use your intuition.

  • Do you feel like there is something missing in your wardrobe?
  • Do you find yourself reaching for the same clothes over and over again?
  • What do you need in order to feel more put together?
  • Do you need a blazer for work? Or a pair of comfortable sneakers for your free time?

Whatever it is, give it some time and let yourself know what you need. You don’t need to rush into anything.

At this point, you are experimenting with your style and finding what works best for you.

You might not get it right the first time but that is ok. Just keep experimenting.

Create building blocks

Building blocks are the foundation of your capsule wardrobe. They are the clothes that you will wear over and over again.

They are the pieces that you feel comfortable in and that you can mix and match easily.

Building blocks are versatile and timeless, and they reflect your style.

Some examples of building blocks are:

  • a white T-shirt
  • a black T-shirt
  • a black blazer
  • a pair of timeless jeans
  • a little black dress
  • a neutral sweater
  • a denim jacket

Remember: a capsule wardrobe doesn’t have to be neutral in colors. You can definitely add some color to your wardrobe. The only rule is to have colors that match between.

Always adjust your style

Your style changes all the time. It changes according to your new phases of life, your mood, or the season.

You might become a mom, have a remote job, or move to a new city. These changes will definitely affect your style.

That is why it is important to always adjust your wardrobe according to your current situation.

A capsule wardrobe is not set in stone. It is flexible and it changes along with you.

how to build your minimal capsule wardrobe

Final thoughts

A capsule wardrobe is a great way to save time, money, and energy. It is also a great way to find your personal style.

Start small and gradually build your way up. Don’t try to do everything at once.

And always remember: A capsule wardrobe is not about restricting yourself. It is about having less but better.

I hope you found this article helpful. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. I would love to hear from you.

Cheers, Diana

Minimalist Apartment Checklist

minimalist apartment checklist

It can be hard to come up with all the stuff that you need for your apartment as a minimalist, that is why I have created this minimalist apartment checklist to get you an idea of what you might actually need.

Whether you’re moving to a new apartment or downsizing the belongings in your apartment, there’s one thing that’s for sure: you don’t need a lot of stuff. In fact, transitioning to a minimalist lifestyle can be liberating. Not only will you have less to worry about, but you’ll also save money in the long run.

So, where do you start? Creating a minimalist apartment checklist is a great way to get organized and streamline your belongings. But it can be tough to know what to keep and what to get rid of. After all, everyone’s definition of “essential” differs.

To help you out, I’ve put together a list of must-haves for your minimalist apartment—no matter your budget or style preference.

Remember that you can always add more to it, or take away items, as you see fit.

What is a minimalist apartment?

A minimalist apartment is an intentional space that contains only the essentials—furniture, appliances, and decor that serve a purpose and bring you joy. The goal is to declutter your living space and simplify your life.

By doing so, you’ll be left with a clean, peaceful, and functional home that reflects your personal style. Plus, you’ll save time and money by not having to upkeep a bunch of unnecessary stuff.

Why having a minimalist apartment

There are many benefits to having a minimalist apartment, including:

  • more free time
  • less cleaning
  • more space in your apartment
  • less stress and anxiety
  • more money in your pocket
  • more functional and efficient use of your space
  • a higher quality of life.

The minimalist apartment checklist

Now that you know the basics, it’s time to create your minimalist apartment checklist. Below you can see the items that I think are essential for any minimalist apartment, regardless of your budget or style preference.

Keep in mind that in this article I don’t include any perishables, like food, chemicals, dish soaps, or shampoos, as they’re not technically part of your “apartment.”

Let’s divide this checklist into rooms:

Living room

This is the most important space in your house since you probably spend most of your time here. So you don’t want it to be cluttered, or full of things you don’t use or need. You want it to be functional, cozy, and inviting—a place where you can relax and enjoy your time.

Related: Minimalism and Hygge: Getting Cozy Without the Clutter

Here are some suggestions for what to include in your living room:

A comfortable couch or armchair

This is where you’ll relax, read a book, or watch TV. So make sure it’s comfortable and inviting.

I would advise you to look into multipurpose furniture if you can, like a couch bed. So when you have friends or family stay over, they have a place to sleep.

Pillows and a blanket

They come in handy when you want to snuggle up with a good book or movie. You could live without them, of course, but they make your living room cozier, and it matters.

TV and TV board

I know, TV takes up a lot of space. But if you’re like most people, you probably watch it every day. So it makes you happy. So you need it. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be minimal.

If you want a screen but not a TV so it doesn’t take up a lot of space, you can invest in a projector, or just use your laptop.

As for the TV board, make sure it’s something minimal where you can also put other things like a few books that you love.

Coffee table

A coffee table makes the living room so much more inviting and cozy. It’s a great place to put your coffee or a small minimal natural decor (like a vase of flowers).


Lighting is important in any room, but especially in the living room where you want to create a cozy atmosphere. There are lamps that take up very little space and still give off a lot of light (if you need it).

I have a lamp that has a remote where you can adjust the lighting in the room. It’s pretty cool that I don’t need more than one lamp.


Carpet makes any room feel cozy. It also helps to keep the noise level down (especially if you live in an apartment).

It makes it easier to lay down on the floor (if you have kids or want to do yoga at home) and it just looks nicer than a bare floor.

You might be interested in What is Minimalist Aesthetic and How to Achieve it?


The kitchen is another important room in the house where you spend a lot of time. So you want it to be functional, efficient, and stylish.

Here are some suggestions for what you would need in your kitchen:

Essential kitchen electric appliances

These include:

  • fridge
  • oven
  • stove
  • blender (it is very multifunctional, which is a big plus for a minimalist apartment).

You probably use all of these appliances on a daily basis, so they’re essential.

Tableware and silverware

You need plates, bowls, and cups—preferably in a neutral color. I like white because it goes with everything.

As for silverware, you need the basics: forks, knives, and spoons.

Make sure that you have only a few of each so that your kitchen is not full of things you don’t use.

Pots and pans

You need a few essential pots and pans for cooking. Again, make sure that you only have what you need so that your kitchen is not cluttered.

Baking supplies

If you like to bake, then you need a few essential baking supplies. This might include:

  • a small baking pan
  • a muffin tin
  • a cookie sheet
  • a cake pan

You might need only one of these, and that’s totally fine.

Dish rack

A dish rack is essential for a minimalist kitchen. It helps to keep your counters clutter-free.

You can find dish racks that are very simple and take up very little space.


You need a few kitchen towels to dry dishes and clean up spills.

Trash bin

Unless you live in Scandinavia where trash bins are implemented directly in the furniture under the sink, you will need a small trash bin in your kitchen.

IKEA has a wide range of small and discreet trash bins that fit perfectly in any apartment and are also quite cheap.

Table and chairs

If you eat and if you are not an extreme minimalist, you will need a small table and chairs for your kitchen.

Nothing fancy, just something functional that you can use for eating and working.

Cupboards, shelves, and drawers

You need storage space in your kitchen. So if your apartment doesn’t already have cupboards, shelves, and drawers, you will need to buy some.

Try to have just enough storage so that your kitchen is not cluttered.


The bedroom is a very personal space, so you can really make it your own.

Here are some ideas for what to include in your bedroom:

Bed and mattress

The most important piece of furniture in the bedroom is the bed. You want a bed that is comfortable and that fits the style of your bedroom.

Also, make sure that you get a good mattress. A good night’s sleep is essential for anyone, really.

Sheets, pillows, and blankets

You need sheets, pillows, and blankets for your bed. It is best if you find a nice fabric that is soft and comfortable.

I like cotton because it is very breathable.

Bedside table

A bedside table is very useful because it gives you a place to put things like a lamp, your alarm clock, and your book.


If reading in bed is your thing, then you need a lamp on your bedside table. Although you might still need a lamp for night wakings.


A closet is essential for storing your clothes, shoes, and other belongings.

Again, you want to make sure that you have enough storage but not too much. You don’t want your closet to be cluttered.

A capsule wardrobe is something that you might want to consider.

What you Can do When you Have too Many Clothes?


In apartments bathrooms are usually very small, so you want to make sure that you use the space wisely.

Here are some ideas for what you might need to include in your bathroom:

Bath and hand towels

You need a few bath towels and hand towels for showering and bathing. Again, you want to find a nice fabric that is soft and comfortable.

Shower curtain

A shower curtain is essential. You can find shower curtains in a variety of colors and patterns.

Toilet brush and plunger

A toilet brush is essential for keeping your toilet clean.

A plunger is also essential for unclogging toilets.

Trash bin

You will need a small trash bin for your bathroom. This is where you can put things like used hygiene products.

A few drawers

You might want a few small drawers for your bathroom. This is where you can put things like toiletries and towels.


The hallway is often overlooked space in apartments. But it is actually a very important space because it is usually the first thing that you see when you enter the apartment.

Here are some ideas for what to include in your hallway:

A place to hang coats and jackets

If you live in a cold climate, you will need a place to hang your coats and jackets.

A place to store shoes

You will also need a place to store your shoes. A small bench or a shelf will do the trick.

A mirror

A mirror is always useful, especially in a small space like a hallway. It can make the space look bigger and it can also be used for checking your appearance before you leave the apartment.

Tips for your minimalist apartment checklist

As I said in the beginning, everyone’s minimalist apartment checklist will look different.

But here are a few general tips to keep in mind:

Multipurpose furniture

When it comes to multipurpose furniture, there are endless possibilities. From couch beds to storage ottomans, investing in pieces that serve more than one purpose will save you space and money in the long run.

Simple decor

Decorating your new place doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive—less is definitely more when it comes to minimalist living. Stick to a few key pieces that make a big impact, like large statement art or a vintage rug.

And don’t forget about plants! They add life (literally) to any room and don’t require much maintenance.

Technology must-haves

In today’s world, it’s impossible to live without some form of technology—but that doesn’t mean you need the latest and greatest gadget on the market. A smartphone, laptop, and Wi-Fi access should suffice for most people’s needs. If you work from home or are a student, you may need additional equipment like a printer or external hard drive—but only if they’re absolutely essential.

A good book (or two)

Whether you prefer eBooks or traditional paperbacks, having at least one good book on hand is always nice—especially when you need a break from screens! You might also consider creating a minimalist library if that is your thing.

Curl up with your favorite read on rainy days or lazy weekends and enjoy some uninterrupted me-time.*

*Bonus tip: If you’re an avid reader but short on space, try signing up for an online library like Kindle Unlimited or Scribd. That way, you can borrow books electronically without taking up any physical space.

Be mindful of your perishables

If you’re living in a small space, you probably don’t have room for a large refrigerator or pantry. That’s why it’s important to be mindful of your perishables and only buy what you know you’ll use within a certain period of time.

I’ve been there: when you buy lots of cleaning supplies, a few shampoos just in case, 10 kg of flour, and other things that take a lifetime to finish. So, try to be more mindful and purposeful when stocking your shelves—you’ll save money and reduce food waste in the process.

Final thoughts

No matter what your individual needs are, I hope this minimalist apartment checklist has given you some ideas for how to get started. Remember, the key to successful minimalism is to declutter regularly and only keep the things that you absolutely need.

When in doubt, ask yourself if an item brings you joy or if it’s truly essential to your daily life. If the answer is no to both, then it’s time to let it go!

What’s on your minimalist apartment checklist? Share in the comments below!

Thank you for reading.

Enjoy your day!

Cheers, Diana

How to Live a Minimalist Lifestyle with a Family?

minimalist with a family

You might ask yourself if it’s even possible to live a minimalist lifestyle with a family. Well, spoiler alert, yes, it is. But how? And how long does it take?

You may have heard of the minimalist lifestyle and thought it sounded great. A life with less stuff, less stress, and more time to enjoy the things you love sounded amazing! But then you thought about your family. Could you really downsize your life and get rid of all your unneeded belongings with kids in the picture? And maybe a husband who knows nothing about minimalism?

A minimalist lifestyle with a family sounds like an impossible task and such an overwhelming one.

And I know it because I’ve been there. I lived in a house full of stuff, especially clothes. I had closets and drawers full of clothes that I had never worn. Same with my mom and my sister.

Our family storage was full to the brim of things we thought we needed but never used.

Now, having my own family, things are different.

Is it possible to live a minimalist lifestyle with a family?

The short answer is yes! It is possible to live a minimalist lifestyle with a family. In fact, many families are doing it! But it does take some effort and planning to make it work. Don’t worry, it’s not as difficult as it may seem. Once you get started, you’ll be surprised at how easy it is to live with less.

I am happy to declare that my family’s lifestyle is pretty minimalistic.

Of course, we are not perfect and there are always areas that we can improve on but overall, I would say that we live a very simple life.

We don’t have a lot of stuff and we don’t spend a lot of money.

And we are happy.

What is a minimalist family?

Relax, there is no exact definition of what a minimalist family does or doesn’t do.

But in general, families who live a minimalist lifestyle try to keep only the essential things in their life. They focus on quality over quantity and experiences over things.

And when I say that there is no definition of what a minimalist family is, I mean that it looks different for everyone. For you, it might mean owning 2000 items, and for someone else 15 items (yes, there are people who live with 15 items).

I followed a woman some time ago that declare herself a minimalist (she has 5 children). And yes, she has a minimalist wardrobe for herself and her children. But, in my opinion, she has lots of stuff. Lots of Christmas gifts, all those stuff.

But yes, it is certainly less than an average American family owns. So she does have a minimalist family.

Comparing my family to her, we have much less stuff. And we are also a minimalist family.

So the idea is that it looks different for everyone. And it works differently for everyone. If you want to live a minimalist lifestyle with your family, start small.

Challenges of living a minimalist lifestyle with a family

Considering the fact that it is basically a new lifestyle that you have to implement in your family, there could be some challenges that you might notice in your journey as a minimalist family. Although they might be difficult to face, remember that these challenges are only temporary and they will go away as you and your family get used to the new lifestyle.

So here are some of the challenges that you might come across:

Dealing with your family members’ stuff

One of the biggest challenges of living a minimalist lifestyle with a family is dealing with other people’s stuff. If your spouse or partner is busy or not at home, it can be difficult for you to downsize their belongings. Plus, it’s not a good idea since they know better what they need.

The same goes for your kids. As much as you want to declutter their rooms, it’s not your call.

One way to deal with this is to have a “declutter day” where everyone in the family goes through their belongings and decides what they want to keep and what they want to get rid of. This can be a great way to encourage everyone in the family to participate in your minimalist lifestyle.

Dealing with unwanted gifts

Another challenge you might face is dealing with unwanted gifts. As a family, big or small, you will receive gifts from friends and family. And not all of them will be to your taste or needs.

Well, there are three options that you can do to deal with this:

  • You can re-gift it to someone who will appreciate it more.
  • You can donate it or try to sell it.
  • Or you can tell the person who gave it to you that you don’t need or want it and why.

The most important thing is not to let it clutter your house.

Further reading: Unwanted Gifts: How to Handle & Prevent Receiving Them

One/more of your family members are not open to the idea of a minimalist lifestyle

Of course, it’s not always going to be easy to convince all your family members to jump on the minimalist bandwagon. And that’s okay. You can’t force anyone to change their lifestyle if they’re not ready or open to it.

The best thing you can do is to lead by example and hope that eventually, they’ll come around.

If they see that you thrive and are happy with your new lifestyle, they might be more open to the idea.

You have little to no idea where to start

Not only the decluttering part is overwhelming, but the idea of telling your family about your decision to live a minimalistic lifestyle can be daunting, too.

But trust me: the beginning is the hardest part. Once you get started, it will be much easier.

So the advice for now: JUST START.

You will need a lot of patience

Like with anything new, you will need time to get used to this lifestyle. And it might not be easy at first, especially with a family. Your family members might not be on board with your decision to live a minimalist lifestyle.

So you will need to be patient and explain your reasons for wanting to live this way.

minimalist with a family

It might be hard to stay focused on this lifestyle

While now you think that it is the best decision to live a minimalist lifestyle, you might change your opinion later when it is going to get challenging.

Let’s say you are in a store and your child wants a toy that you know he is not going to use for more than a week. You have to stay focused and explain to him why you are not buying it. This can be hard, he might start a tantrum, and you might give in. But if you want to live a minimalist lifestyle, you need to be strong and explain your reasons.

Benefits of living a minimalist lifestyle with a family

Oh, challenges are many but how about the benefits?

You will save money

The first and most obvious benefit is that you will save money. When you declutter your home, you get rid of things you don’t need or use. This means that you will stop buying things that you don’t need. And when you stop buying things you don’t need, you will, obviously, save lots of money.

Less cleaning

I love this one. When you have less stuff, you will have less to clean. This means that you will have more time for the things you love and care about.

Instead of cleaning every day all the toys and clothes that your children have, you can focus on spending more time with your family.

You will feel lighter

Literally. And abstractly. When you declutter your home, you get rid of all the unnecessary things. This will make your home feel lighter and more spacious. And it will make you feel lighter, too. You will get rid of the physical and mental clutter that was weighing you down.

Relationships in your family will grow

When you live a minimalist lifestyle, you will focus on the things that really matter. And one of those things is your family (well, one of the most important ones, actually).

You will have more time and energy to invest in your relationships. You will be able to create lasting memories with your loved ones. For instance, instead of buying your child a new toy every week, you can go on a trip to the park or play catch in the backyard.

You will be happier

You will be surprised how happy you can be with less. When you get rid of all the materialistic things that are weighing you down, you will feel lighter, freer, and happier. And isn’t that what we all want?

Steps to take to live a minimalist lifestyle with a family

So how can you live a simpler life with a family? Here are a few steps: 

1. Finding your “why”

It might sound cliche, but the first step to anything is finding your “why”. Ask yourself: why do you want to live a minimalist lifestyle? To make it easier for you, here are a few reasons why people want to live a minimalist lifestyle:

  • To declutter their life and have less stuff and less cleaning time
  • To simplify their life and focus on what’s important, like family and friends
  • To have more time to pursue their hobbies or passions
  • To save money
  • To live a more eco-friendly lifestyle
  • To reduce stress and anxiety

Once you know your “why”, it will be easier for you to stick to your decision of living a minimalist lifestyle.

Also, you will need to explain your “why” to your family members so they can understand your decision.

2.Get everyone on board

The second step is to get your whole family on board with the idea of living a more minimalist lifestyle.

This can be tough, especially if your kids are used to having a lot of stuff. But some studies show that when kids have less stuff, they are actually happier. Not to mention, it will be a lot easier for you if everyone is on the same page.

Your partner is going to be key in this process. If he/she is not on board, it will be very difficult to make any changes. Talk to your partner about your plans and why you want to live a more minimalist lifestyle. If they are not open to the idea, try to show them the benefits. For example, less stuff means more money to save or spend on experiences.

3. Declutter as a family

Once you’ve got everyone on board, it’s time to start decluttering your home as a family. This doesn’t mean getting rid of all of your possessions – but it does mean being intentional about what you keep and what you get rid of. Have each family member go through their belongings and decide what they want to keep and what they can live without.

Then, donate or sell anything that doesn’t bring you joy. Not only will this give your home a much-needed makeover, but it will also teach your children the importance of living with less. In the future (with very much patience from your side), they’ll be more likely to play with what they have and resist the urge to accumulate stuff they don’t need.

So ask yourself:

  • What do I own that I never use?
  • What do I own that I don’t truly love?
  • What do I own that adds nothing but clutter and stress to my life?

Once you’ve answered those questions, let go of those things—either by selling them, donating them, or throwing them away. Trust me; you won’t miss them once they’re gone. And your life will be all the better for it. 

Related: Your Complete Clutter-Clearing Guide

4. Find joy in simple things

One of the best things about minimalism is that it allows you to find joy in the simple things in life. Instead of spending money on expensive activities or toys, focus on doing things together as a family that doesn’t cost anything – like going for walks, visiting the library, or playing games at home. 

Another great way to find joy in simple things is to cook meals together as a family. This is a great way to bond and it’s also a lot cheaper than eating out all the time.

Moreover, you can stick to some family traditions that don’t require spending any money at all. For example, watching family movies together every Saturday or taking turns telling stories.

5. Set some ground rules

Setting some ground rules as a family is a great way to make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to living a minimalist lifestyle.

Examples of ground rules can be:

  • Understanding the difference between needs and wants and only buying what we need
  • For each new item that comes in, one item must go out (it’s especially useful for children, so the toys don’t accumulate in your house).
  • Only eating out on special occasions
  • Have a specific day each month when everyone declutters their belongings (make it fun for the whole family)
  • Planning family activities that don’t cost anything

10 practical tips on minimalism with a family

I know you’ve got this but I’ll give you some tips on minimalism with a family.

1. Practice toy rotation

Toy rotation is when you only have a certain number of toys out at a time and you rotate them every few weeks. This way, your kids won’t get bored and overwhelmed with too many toys and you won’t have to buy new toys as often.

It’s like buying new toys for free from your storage space.

2. Implement one in, one out rule

The one in, one out rule is when you or your child can only have a new toy if they get rid of an old one. That way, you won’t end up with too many toys and your child will learn to be more intentional with their belongings.

3. Always communicate with your partner

It’s hard to educate the kids when you and your partner are not on the same page. So make sure you’re always communicating with each other about your goals and what you expect from each other when it comes to minimalism.

4. Delay gratification

Delaying gratification is one of the most important things you can teach your children. It’s the ability to resist the temptation of instant gratification and wait for something better in the future.

You can teach your children this skill by making them wait for a certain amount of time before they can have a new toy. For example, you can say “if you wait a week, we’ll go to the store and you can pick out one new toy.”

5. Emphasize that stuff doesn’t last but relationships do

Make sure your kids (and your partner) understand that stuff doesn’t last but relationships do. Tell them this in different circumstances and different ways so they really understand it.

One way you can do this is by telling them stories about your childhood and the things that you remember most. Chances are, it’s not the stuff you had but the relationships you had with people.

6. Go places

There are plenty of places you can go as a family that doesn’t cost anything. Visiting the park, going on a nature walk, or going to the library are all great options. The idea is to find things you can do together as a family that don’t require spending any money.

7. Set intention to be present

Most often we are not mindful of the time that we spend with our family. We just go through motion waiting for another moment to come.

But when you’re intentional about being present, it changes everything. You’ll find that you have more patience, more energy, and more love for your family.

Observe your children’s play, and don’t let your mind wander. Be fully present at the moment and enjoy it.

8. Have a place for every item in the house

This tip is more general. But it’s important nonetheless.

When you have a place for every single item in your house, it’s easier to keep things tidy and organized. It’s also easier to find things when you need them.

So make it a rule in your house that everything has a place and that everyone puts their things back in their place when they’re done using them.

9. If you said “no”, keep it that way

When you tell your kids “no”, make sure you stick to it. Don’t give in to their whining or crying. If you do, they’ll learn that they can get what they want if they just cry long enough. So if for instance they see a toy in a store and you say “no”, don’t give in and buy it for them.

You will be thankful you did in the long run.

10. Reap the benefits

There are many benefits that come with living a minimalist lifestyle with a family.

You’ll find that you have more time, energy, and money. You’ll also find that your relationships are stronger and you’re able to be more present.

So be grateful that you chose this lifestyle and enjoy the benefits that come with it.

How long does it take to implement a minimalist lifestyle in your family?

It usually takes a bit of time to implement a minimalist lifestyle in your family. By “a bit of time”, I mean a long time.

But don’t get disheartened. Even a small step like getting rid of broken and unused items can be life-changing. It feels amazing to let go of things you don’t need and see your living space transform before your eyes.

It takes a while to adapt and to see what works for you and your family. But it can transform your life in ways you never thought possible.

For instance, you might find that your children have better behaved because they know what’s expected of them and they have fewer distractions.

This is a long game with a happy ending. So take your time and enjoy the journey.

Final thoughts

Minimalism isn’t about having less stuff – it’s about living with intention and purpose so that you can make room for the things that matter most to you. And yes, it is possible to be a minimalist even if you have a family! By involving everyone in the process, decluttering as a family, simplifying your schedules, and finding joy in simple things, you can live a more minimalist lifestyle with ease – despite having children!

What challenges have you faced when trying to live a more minimalist lifestyle with a family? Was it worth it in the end? Let me know in the comments below.

Have a great day!

Cheers, Diana

Extreme Minimalism – Owning Less Than 15 Items

extreme minimalism

Extreme minimalism is certainly not for everyone. But there are people who live with only 15 items. Find out how and why.

Do you know Andrew Hyde? He’s a pretty interesting guy. He decided to travel the world and sell all of his stuff, so he could fit everything he owned into a single backpack. That’s pretty extreme. That’s extreme minimalism.

All he had in his backpack was fifteen items. FIFTEEN. He said that it’s so liberating to own so little. Besides that, he wrote in one of his blog posts that “When we were growing up, didn’t we all have the goal of a huge house full of things? I found a far more quality life by rejecting things as a gauge of success.”

After a couple of years, he increased his possessions to 39 but still… it is WAYS LESS than we own.

But let’s start with the basics.

What is extreme minimalism?

Extreme minimalism is a lifestyle where you own as few possessions as possible. For some people, that might mean owning just 100 things. For others, it might mean owning just 15 things.

Extreme minimalism pushes you to really think about what you need in your life and what you can live without. It’s a lifestyle that declutters your physical space and gives you more time and freedom to focus on what’s important to you.

What is the difference between minimalism and extreme minimalism?

It might sound similar, but it’s not. Minimalism is a lifestyle where you own fewer possessions and focus on quality over quantity. Extreme minimalism, on the other hand, takes that one step further by owning only items that are used on a DAILY basis.

Another difference between the two is that minimalism is about finding a balance that works for YOU. There is no “right” way to be a minimalist. Everyone has different needs and priorities.

Extreme minimalism, on the other hand, is about owning as few things as possible – period.

Extreme minimalism & comfort

Comfort is basically life satisfaction + contentment. And it’s not just about your physical comfort, but your emotional and mental comfort too.

How does extreme minimalism affect your comfort?

There are studies that confirm that the more money we have, the higher our life satisfaction is. Why? Because we can afford things. We can afford a blender, a comfortable mattress, and a stroller for our baby.

No, let’s be clear, money does NOT buy happiness. But money does increase our life satisfaction because it gives us the ability to purchase items that make our lives easier and more comfortable.

Whereas living as an extreme minimalist would most likely decrease your comfort. Because you would only have 15 items.


I don’t think it’s a bad thing to push yourself outside of your comfort zone. In fact, I think it’s incredibly rewarding.

You see, when you own fewer things, you’re forced to be more resourceful. You have to get creative with what you have and figure out ways to make do with less.

It’s not always easy, but it’s definitely rewarding. And it might just surprise you how much you can accomplish with so little.

Andrew Hyde started with 15 items but eventually increased his possessions to 39. He understood that while it’s possible to live with just 15 items, it’s not always practical or comfortable.

The contrast of extreme minimalism

39 possessions are a far cry from the average American household, which has 300,000 items.


Can you even wrap your head around that?

I know I can’t.

It’s mind-boggling to think about how much stuff people have. And yet, we still feel like we need more.

It’s an interesting contrast, isn’t it?

On one hand, you have people like Andrew Hyde who are living with just 15 items. And on the other hand, you have people with houses full of stuff they don’t even use.

How is that possible? There should be some reasons why you and I and many others are interested in minimalism, and even extreme minimalism.

Why would someone want to live with only 15 items?

People choose to live with fewer possessions for all sorts of reasons. Some of the most essential ones include:

  1. downsizing
  2. saving money
  3. reducing stress and anxiety
  4. gaining time and freedom
  5. living more intentionally
  6. decluttering their physical and mental space
  7. creating a simpler life
  8. traveling
  9. pushing their limits
  10. being more resourceful
  11. testing their assumptions
  12. breaking societal norms
  13. pursuing their passions
  14. eliminating distractions
  15. connecting with nature
  16. valuing experiences over things

As you can see, there are all sorts of reasons why people might want to own only a few things. Most of the time, there is more than just one reason.

Living furniture free

One of the most interesting things about extreme minimalism is that some people choose to live without furniture.

They don’t own a bed, a couch, a table, or chairs.

Sounds pretty extreme, right?

Why would they do that?

  • Maybe simply because it’s possible.
  • Or maybe they want to see how far they can push themselves.
  • Or maybe they just don’t need all that stuff.

What is Minimalist Aesthetic?

It’s all about setting priorities

I kind of get it. It’s not a necessary thing as we might think, it’s a comfort thing. Extreme minimalists have other priorities and comforts that they focus on instead.

It’s all a matter of perspective, I suppose.

Let’s say you have a bed, a couch, a table, and chairs. And you use them all regularly.

Now let’s say you get rid of all of that furniture. What do you have left?

A lot more space, for one thing. But also, a lot more freedom.

You see, when you have fewer things, you’re not tied down to them. You’re not responsible for taking care of them cleaning them or storing them.

You’re free to move around, change your mind, and live your life however you want. And that’s pretty liberating if you ask me.

Deprivation of stuff

It’s interesting to think about how we might react if we were suddenly deprived of our stuff.

What would happen if all your possessions were taken away from you?

Extreme minimalists have experienced this firsthand by choice.

Do you know Youheum Son? She lives in a furniture-free apartment and has only a few things that she loves.

You might think she’s deprived, but she actually says she feels rich because she has everything she needs and loves. She expresses gratitude for the things she does have, instead of feeling sorry for the things she doesn’t have.

Youheum says that she doesn’t deprive herself of stuff, even if she is an extreme minimalist. On the contrary, she is happy with what she has and doesn’t feel the need for more.

Is extreme minimalism for you?

Extreme minimalism might not be for everyone. But it’s definitely something to think about.

  • Are you ready to declutter your life and own only very few items?
  • Are you ready to get rid of your furniture and live a more nomadic lifestyle?
  • Are you ready to push your limits and see how little you really need?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, then extreme minimalism might be for you.

A good idea might be to try it out for a few months and see how you like it. You can always go back to your old way of living if it’s not for you. You will certainly learn a lot about yourself in the process.

Related: 20 Characteristics of a Minimalist Person

How do you live with very few possessions?

In case you want to try it out, how do you start?

Let’s say that living with less than 100 possessions is extreme minimalism. How do you even begin to get there?

Here are some tips:

1. Declutter seasonal items

Extreme minimalists typically only own items that they use regularly. This means getting rid of seasonal items that you only use a few times a year.

This includes:

  • holiday decorations
  • winter clothes
  • summer clothes

2. Get rid of duplicates

If you own less than 100 items, you certainly wouldn’t need more than one cup or one plate. Duplicates are a waste of space and resources.

3. Have multipurpose items

To save space, have items that serve more than one purpose.

For example:

  • A sofa bed (well, in case you decide that you want furniture).
  • A kitchen table that can be used as a desk.
  • A blender can also be used as a juicer, food processor, and mixer.

For instance, a lemon zest peeper is certainly not a multi-purpose item. You would only use it to zest lemons. And you would probably only use it a few times a year. So, it’s probably not something you would need if you’re trying to own less than 100 items. Unless you are a lemon zest lover.

4. Consider borrowing, renting, or sharing

There’s no need to own everything. If you only need something once in a while, consider borrowing it from a friend, renting it, or sharing it.

5. Be grateful for what you have

This tip is more of a mindset shift. But it’s important nonetheless.

When you’re trying to live with less, you need to focus and enjoy the things you do have. It’s easy to take our possessions for granted. But when you have fewer things, you start to appreciate them more.

Related: 101 things to be grateful for

6. Let go of your attachments mentally and emotionally

In order to declutter your life, you need to let go of attachments. Don’t hold on to things because you think you might need them in the future.

And don’t hold on to things because they have sentimental value. If you’re not using them, let them go.

7. Notice the freedom that comes with owning less

One of the best things about extreme minimalism is the freedom that comes with it.

When you own fewer things, you have more time and energy to focus on the things that are important to you.

You don’t have to spend time cleaning, organizing, and maintaining your things. And you don’t have to worry about them getting lost or stolen.

8. It’s okay to adjust if needed

There’s no need to be rigid about it. If you find that you need more than 15 items, then that’s okay.

The point is to find a balance that works for you. If you need 101 items to be happy and fulfilled, then that’s perfectly fine.

The essential thing is that you’re conscious about the things you own and why you own them.

Extreme minimalism, like minimalism in general, is a deeply personal journey that transcends rigid adherence to a specific number of possessions. Rather than fixating on a set numerical limit, extreme minimalism revolves around cultivating a profound awareness of our possessions and the profound reasons behind their presence in our lives.

Extreme minimalism represents an even more intentional and radical form of simplification. It’s not just about owning very few items; it’s about deliberate and conscious choices, which stand from wanting to experience life more. It seeks to establish an equilibrium between material possessions and our internal sense of fulfillment and purpose.

Adjusting as needed will make sure that you are not an extreme minimalist just for the label but for the authentic benefits and alignment with your life’s goals.

True minimalism, whether extreme or moderate, is not about conforming to a label or following a trend; it’s about making intentional choices that enhance your well-being and satisfaction.

FAQ about extreme minimalism

Q: Who is the most extreme minimalist?

Youheum Son and Andrew Hyde are two well-known extreme minimalists. They are both self-proclaimed “extreme minimalists” and have been featured in the media for their unusual lifestyle choices.

Q: List of 15 things Andrew Hyde had:

  • Backpack
  • Wallet
  • iPhone
  • Small Camera
  • iPad
  • Sandals
  • Sunglasses
  • Jacket
  • Toiletry Kit
  • Towel
  • Long Sleeve Shirt
  • Short Sleeve Shirt
  • Long Pants
  • Board Shorts
  • Underwear

Q: Is extreme minimalism healthy?

I am not talking from a health professional point of view, but from what I have researched and seen, I would argue that it could be healthy in some cases.

Owning less than 100 items seems like a good way to declutter your life and focus on what is important. It also means that you will have to do less laundry, organizing, and cleaning in general, which could lead to a more relaxed lifestyle.

Q: What is the opposite of extreme minimalism?

Maximalism! Which is basically the complete opposite. It is the idea of surrounding yourself with as many things as possible. More is more. It is a trend that has been rising in popularity in recent years.

Q: What is the hard part of extreme minimalism?

There are 2 most important ones: sentimental items and acceptance to go without material possessions.

The first one is hard because we are often attached to things that have sentimental value, even if we don’t use them. It can be really tough to let go of something that has been in your family for generations or that reminds you of a happy memory.

The second point is hard because we are used to having things. We are used to having a lot of choices and being able to buy whatever we want. Going without can be tough, especially at first. You might find yourself constantly thinking about all the things you don’t have and that you used to take for granted.

Q: Can extreme minimalism be applied to digital and online life?

Yes, extreme minimalism can extend to digital and online life. It often involves decluttering digital devices, deleting unnecessary files, and reducing the number of apps and online subscriptions. Some extreme minimalists also limit their time spent on social media and digital distractions.

Q: What are some common misconceptions about extreme minimalism?

One common misconception is that extreme minimalists live a life of deprivation or struggle. In reality, they often report increased happiness and freedom from their minimalist choices. Another misconception is that minimalism means owning nothing, when in fact, it’s about intentional ownership of items that add value to one’s life.

Q: How do extreme minimalists handle hobbies and interests that may require equipment or materials?

I find this question fascinating since extreme minimalists want to experience life to the fullest, that is why they get rid of stuff. However, when wanting to experience life, you need hobbies. And for hobbies, you need stuff.
There is no black-and-white answer to this question, however, there are a few things on how this type of people approach hobbies:

  1. Prioritizing: They select a few meaningful hobbies.
  2. Versatility: Choose versatile equipment.
  3. Sharing: Borrow, rent, or share when possible.
  4. Digital: Opt for digital options when applicable.
  5. Quality: Invest in high-quality, compact items.
  6. Regular Assessment: Reevaluate hobbies and possessions.
  7. Shared Spaces: Utilize shared resources if available.

This way, they enjoy hobbies while staying true to their extreme minimalist values.

Q: Is becoming an extreme minimalist a trend?

Extreme minimalism might appear trendy, especially in today’s digital age where everything is showcased online. The lifestyle has gained popularity with more people trying it and sharing their experiences. However, extreme minimalism has existed for a long time. People embrace extreme minimalism not merely as a trend but because they seek a simpler, more deliberate life focused on intentional ownership and less clutter.

Final thoughts

Extreme minimalism is a lifestyle choice that not all of us are ready to make. But it is something that we can all learn from.

It teaches us to be more conscious about the things we own and to appreciate the things we have.

It also shows us that we don’t need material possessions to be happy and fulfilled. On top of that, it can lead to a more relaxed and stress-free lifestyle.

I hope you found this article helpful and that it has given you something to think about.

Have a lovely day.

Cheers, Diana

What is Minimalist Aesthetic & How to Achieve It?

minimalist aesthetic

As someone living a minimalist lifestyle & living in a Scandinavian country where minimalist aesthetic style is popular, I find this trend very inspiring and calming. I am here to talk more about how to achieve a minimalist aesthetic in your own home.

What is the minimalist aesthetic style in a nutshel? The minimalist aesthetic style is based on the idea of simplicity and functionality. The goal is to strip away all unnecessary elements from a design, leaving only what is essential. This style has become popular in recent years as people have become more interested in living a minimalist lifestyle.

There are a few key elements that are often seen in minimalist designs. These include:

  • clean lines – minimalist designs tend to have clean, straight lines; this gives them a sleek and modern look.
  • white space – white space is an important part of the minimalist aesthetic; it helps to create a feeling of openness and allows the eye to rest.
  • minimal colours – a minimalist design will usually use a limited palette of colours; this helps to create a sense of calm and simplicity.
  • focus on simplicity – the focus of the minimalist aesthetic style is on simplicity and functionality; this means that there are no unnecessary elements.
  • natural decor – minimalist designs often incorporate natural elements such as wood, stone, and plants; this helps to create a sense of harmony with the environment.

What exactly is a minimalist aesthetic?

In the most basic terms, a minimalist aesthetic style can be described as a clean and simple approach to design.

It is an aesthetic that is marked by minimalism, which is a style or technique that can be characterized by economy of form, simplicity of design, and the use of empty or neutral space.

While a minimalist aesthetic is often associated with a more modern look, it can also be used to create a vintage or retro feel. In fact, many popular mid-century modern designs are actually quite minimalist in nature.

Japanese minimalism and minimalist aesthetic style

Japanese minimalism, which is sometimes referred to as wabi-sabi, is a perfect example of how a minimalist aesthetic style can be used to create a unique and beautiful design. Wabi-sabi is an aesthetic that values simplicity, the transient nature of life, and the imperfections of life.

While it might seem like a minimalist aesthetic would be cold and uninviting, Japanese minimalism actually emphasizes a sense of warmth and coziness. This is achieved through the use of natural materials, such as wood and stone, and by incorporating elements of nature, such as plants and water, into the design.

What does a minimalist aesthetic home look like?

Some common features are often seen in a home with a minimalist aesthetic. These features include:

No clutter

When you enter a minimalist home, you should feel a sense of calm and tranquillity. This is because one of the key principles of minimalism is to declutter your home and get rid of anything that doesn’t serve a purpose. A minimalist home will be free of any knick-knacks or superfluous items.


A minimalist aesthetic style is all about keeping things simple. This means that the colours, furniture, and overall design of the home will be kept to a minimum.

You won’t see any busy patterns or loud colours in a minimalist home. Everything will be kept clean and simple.


In a minimalist home, everything will have a purpose. There will be no useless items taking up space. Every piece of furniture will have a function, and there will be no decorative items that don’t serve a purpose.

Natural light

Minimalist homes often make use of natural light to create a bright and airy space. Large windows are common in minimalist homes, as they allow for plenty of natural light to enter the space.

Simple decor

When it comes to the decor in a minimalist home, less is more. You won’t see any elaborate paintings or sculptures. The focus will be on simple, clean lines.

The goal is to avoid any unnecessary distractions.

Furniture with clean lines

The furniture in a minimalist home will have clean lines and simple designs. There will be no frills or embellishments. The focus is on function, not form.

Neutral colour palette

A minimalist home will typically have a neutral colour palette. This means that the walls, floors, and furniture will be mostly white, light grey, and pale colours. This creates a clean and simple look.

The benefits of the minimalist aesthetic

There are some reasons why people might choose to adopt a minimalist aesthetic in their homes. Some of the benefits include:

A feeling of calmness

When you declutter your home and get rid of unnecessary items, it can help to create a feeling of calmness. This is because there are fewer distractions and you can focus on what’s important.

A sense of freedom

With a minimalist lifestyle, you can free yourself from the bondage of material possessions. This can help you to live a more simple and stress-free life.

Related: How to be happy with what you have?

More time for what’s important

Decluttering your home can help you to save time. When you have fewer possessions, there’s less to clean and organize. This gives you more time to focus on the things that are important to you.

Saves money

When you don’t have to spend money on unnecessary items, such as home decor, you can save money. This can help you to live a more financially stress-free life.

Related: No Shopping Challenges

Tips for achieving a minimalist aesthetic in your home

If you’re interested in achieving a minimalist aesthetic in your home, there are some tips that you can follow. These tips include:

1 – Start with a clean slate

If you want to achieve a minimalist look, it’s important to start with a clean slate. This means getting rid of any unnecessary items that you don’t need.

How to do that? You can start by decluttering your home and getting rid of anything that you don’t use or need.

This include:

  • broken items;
  • double items;
  • unwanted gifts;
  • items that you don’t need;
  • excessive decor;
  • anything, really, that doesn’t serve a purpose and doesn’t spark joy.

Also, make sure to:

  • remove unused items from the floor, including unused/unwanted furniture, boxes, clothes, etc.;
  • do not leave any items on the countertops and table, such as keys, mail, etc. (excluding visual appealing items, such as a vase of flowers);
  • organize your space and make sure to leave little to no distractions/items that can cause visual clutter.

I actually have an entire guide on how to clutter-clear your house that you might find helpful.

2 – Choose a neutral colour palette

When it comes to the colours in your home, it’s best to stick to a neutral palette.

This means using colours such as:

  • white,
  • beige,
  • pastel colors,
  • and any light colour.

Choose a few of them that resonate with you and that will help to create a calm and serene environment.

I advise you to look for inspiration online since there are colours that don’t combine that well. I also love to use this tool to help me see what colours go well together.

3 – Choose simple designs

The minimalist aesthetic style is all about simplicity and functionality. When it comes to the furniture and decor in your home, make sure to choose pieces with simple designs.

This means avoiding any frilly details or embellishments. Instead, focus on furniture and decor with clean lines and a sleek design.

Let’s take for instance the most popular IKEA furniture, the Lack table. It has a very simple and sleek design that would be perfect for a minimalist home. It’s also quite cheap.

Not don’t stop with furniture only, also consider other items such as:

  • towels;
  • dishes;
  • curtains;
  • pillows.

These are just some examples, but you can apply this rule to any other items in your home.

4 – Use natural decor

The natural decor makes a space feel more organic and can help to create a calming environment.

Some examples of natural decor include:

  • plants;
  • flowers;
  • wooden elements, like a wooden cutting board or a wooden bowl;
  • stone decor, like a stone vase or a stone sculpture.

Adding natural decor makes a space feel more inviting and cozy.

You can also use natural materials for your furniture, such as wood.

Don’t go overboard with the decor though, as less is more. A few pieces of natural decor can go a long way in achieving a minimalist aesthetic.

Related: Minimalism and Hygge: Getting Cozy Without the Clutter

5 – Showcase your style

While the minimalist aesthetic is all about simplicity, that doesn’t mean your home has to be boring. In fact, a minimalist aesthetic style is quite stylish.

In order to showcase your style is to focus on a few key pieces that you really love and that reflect your personal style.

For instance, if you love art, you can focus on adding a few select pieces to your home. Or, if you love books, you can create a minimalist library.

The important thing is to focus on quality over quantity. A few well-curated pieces will go a long way in achieving a stylish minimalist aesthetic.

6 – Leave white space

In a minimalist home, it’s important to leave some empty space. This is what we call “white space” and it’s an essential part of achieving a minimalist aesthetic.

White space can be both physical and visual.

Even though it is called white space, it doesn’t necessarily have to be white. It can be any colour as long as it’s empty/unoccupied.

Some examples of white space include:

  • an empty wall;
  • an empty shelf;
  • an empty corner;
  • a bare countertop.

The important thing is to make sure there is some negative space in your home. This empty space is just as important as the furniture and decor you choose to fill it with.

Read about the power of white space here.

Bonus tips

  • Let natural light in if possible.
  • Use mirrors to create the illusion of more space.
  • Keep your walls and floors neutral.
  • Focus on simplicity.
  • Regularly declutter.
  • Keep things out of vision.

Other areas of the minimalist aesthetic

The minimalist aesthetic is all about creating a clean, simple, and uncluttered look.

This aesthetic can be applied to many different areas of design, including:

  • web design,
  • graphic design,
  • interior design,
  • and architecture.

Let’s take as an example web design. A web page with a minimalist aesthetic will typically have a clean layout with plenty of white space. The focus will be on the content, not the design. The goal is to create a user-friendly experience that is easy to navigate. No distractions.

This approach can be contrasted with busy, cluttered designs that try to pack in too much information or include too many elements. With minimalism, less is more. And in the case of web design, this can result in a more user-friendly experience that helps people find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.

Final thoughts

I truly believe that the minimalist aesthetic is the way to go. It’s simple, clean, and can be easily tailored to anyone’s needs. I also think that it’s a great way to declutter your life and focus on what’s important.

On top of that, I think that the minimalist aesthetic is a great way to improve our mental health and well-being. It helps us to be less overwhelmed, more focused, and more present.

As Eleanor Roosevelt said, “A little simplification would be the first step toward rational living, I think.”

And I completely agree. Simplification is key, and the minimalist aesthetic is the perfect way to achieve it.

I hope you enjoyed this article and found it helpful.

Have a great day!