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Extreme Minimalism: Can It Make You Happy in 2020?Reading time: 5 mins

When I say extreme minimalism, you probably think of no furniture, 15 items or less, and a floor bed. And you’d be pretty much be right about that. Extreme minimalism takes the concept of minimalism to a higher level. The question is, can it make you happy?

What is the minimalist lifestyle?

For those who don’t know what a basic minimalist lifestyle is, it’s very simple. It’s taking more time to focus on what gives you meaning and happiness.

The process involves getting rid of items that aren’t adding value to your life. Some people choose to get rid of extra clothes they don’t wear, furniture they don’t use, and other random items that are just lying around in the house.

What is the value of a minimalist lifestyle?

The value of minimalism is that you take time to re-discover what really matters to you in life. It’s supposed to help you come closer to finding the peace and joy you want to have.

Instead of being focused on your digital gadgets or getting the latest new clothes, you focus on doing your hobbies, spending time with family, and other meaningful activities.

What is extreme minimalism?

Extreme minimalism involves choosing to live a life with only the barest of necessities. One example you might be familiar with is the tiny house movement.

People who live in homes that are only a few feet wide and a few feet high. Another example of extreme minimalism is having no furniture. Some people choose not to have couches or chairs.

They also choose to sleep on floor mattresses. One of the most extreme examples of extreme minimalism is having only 15 items or less. Can you imagine breaking down all of the stuff you own to only 15? 

Can extreme minimalism make you happy?

In theory, it could. Think about it. If you only have a few items to carry around or a few items to take care of, that’s less stress.

It’s easier to handle your chores or your travels. You’re also really able to focus on only the things that really make you happy, nothing more, nothing less.

Nonetheless, it could also be incredibly boring, uncomfortable and inconvenient. You might start to realize how much of luxury it is to sleep on a comfortable bed.

Or to have all the other items you used to have. Having so much open space with little in it may not feel that much like a home. 

Who is extreme minimalism best for?

Thinking about it, perhaps for someone who lives alone, this would be an ideal lifestyle. One person living alone already doesn’t need that much to begin with.

A couple could perhaps do this lifestyle as well, but that would seem to be where the limit should be. A family of four or more would have a lot more needs to fulfill that might make extreme an unsuitable lifestyle.

Should I do an extreme minimalism lifestyle?

If you’re curious about it, why not give it a try? In fact, you could do your own extreme minimalism challenge. See what you learn about yourself and what you really want out of life by living with as little as possible.

After you do it, you can ask yourself in what ways were you more happy? In what ways were you less happy? Then you can adjust to either have a little bit more of what you need in life, or choose to keep the amount you had when you started extreme minimalism?

Extreme minimalism tips

There’s a lot of extreme minimalism YouTube videos and extreme minimalism Reddit posts out there for guidance. Perhaps the best way to start is think off the top of your head of 15 items you want to keep.

These can be items you want to have in your home, or items you take with you everywhere in your travels. Once you get up to 15, start trying to get rid of everything else one by one. After you’ve got ridden of everything, that will begin day one of your extreme minimalism journey.

Have a journal to write down your thoughts and feelings during this time. You’ll be better able to easily recall what the experience was like, and better able to decide how your life should be moving forward.

You can do it for as little as a week, or up to a month. A month might be best just to get the full experience. 

In the end, you probably won’t miss out on much not choosing to take your minimalism to the extreme. After all, almost too much of anything will eventually make you unhappy.

Life is generally about balance. Our bodies need time to sleep, time to eat, time to move, etc. Too much or not enough of any of these will all eventually kill you. Sorry to put it so bluntly.

But the point being, find the right balance in life, and you’ll more than likely find peace and happiness.

Sources:

Extreme Minimalism: Andrew Hyde and the 15-Item Lifestyle

Extreme Minimalists: Woman lives in home without any furniture

Inside Japan’s extremely minimalist homes – Insider

Extreme Minimalism

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