How much of a minimalist are you?

I just watched a documentary on minimalism, also available on netflix:

Why not start, what I hope can be a meaningful discussion on the topic?

I saw that there is not much action on this forum on this topic. Mustachians are frugal, but that does not mean they are minimalists. Because one starts their Mustachian lifestyle with loads of stuff from the „previous life“

Personally I rather spend money on experiences than on things. I don‘t often buy new stuff.

I thought of a few questions that would be interesting to start a discussion on. Please feel free to suggest other questions as well as to only answer certain questions.

  1. What do you think of the concept?

  2. Do you consider yourself a minimalist? Why (not)?

  3. What lengths did you go through to get there, are you on your way there, did you try but didn‘t (want to) get there or did you not even consider it (yet)?

Leading by example:

  1. It seems to be worth a try, there‘s less stuff you need to search through and need to clean after. Maybe too much on the extrem depending on who you read on. I for one collect magnets from places I‘ve been, football memorobilia and whiskey as well as empty bottles (as decoration I like it; judge me :crazy_face:)
  2. No, although I see the need to get rid of stuff I‘ve not used for ages and have already started getting rid of some stuff.
  3. I plan on trying it out, but not the IMO very extrem variants. I see the need to get rid of books and movies as well as a good junk of my clothes.

Personally, I don’t like the idea of minimalism : it is a restriction life.

For example, you can’t invite people because, first of all, you should live in a small place. Also, you have just 1 plate, 1 fork and 1 nife.

I mean, I don’t see why we live if the goal is to restrict yourself that much.

However, I do think that buying only what you need is important.
For instance, when I took my own flat, I thought about what I really needed. When my parents wanted to give me some stuff as a way of getting rid of them, I just realised I wanted to build my own item list with what I want and hat I will then use.

So the thing of writing down what you want to buy and wait for on month, checking if you still want it is an option that I consider.

Saw the film a few years ago.

  1. I’m a fan, and wish I had “discovered” it a long time ago, to allow it to “grow” with me. And I believe it is much easier to do these days with digitalisation, because I remember up until a few years ago I had paper files of stuff to fill a cupboard by itself. Or the music collection, and the photo albums.
  2. No. It’s wishful thinking for me. I’ve lived out of a backpack for 2 years & loved it. I have a family now, it’s just not feasible. Whatever space I reduce gets filled with toys n sh*t :grimacing:
  3. I’ve just bought less sh*t as time went by, which has helped a lot, but maybe that’s an age thing anyway. I’m really terrible at throwing / letting something go. Yes, I still keep the boxes of souvenir magnets and little bottles of sand from around the world, etc.

There was also a good feature on SRF 2-3 months ago (DOK), I found. A bit more “local flavour” than those two somewhat over-enthusiastic Americans.

(This is the SRF one https://youtu.be/QuaxNucYQtg
I see it is 2 years old, I thought it was “newer”)

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  1. Love the concept
  2. Yes, I like to have less stuff than too much. More stuff = more stress for me.
    3.I use some rules like if I haven’t used an object for a year. I’ll get rid of it.
    Before buying new stuff, I think twice if it’s really useful.
    I also try to be paperless

@Olivier96 Minimalism is a spectrum (like FIRE). You don’t need to have only 1 plate, 1 fork and 1 knife to be minimalist. This is an extreme exemple.

  1. I think it’s good as long as it’s not too much of a sacrifice and doesn’t become a goal by itself
  2. Compared to most of my friends in Switzerland I’d say yes

I can relate to this, and it’s one of the main reason I always evaluate very carefully any purchase of new stuff…or more probably I’m confusing cause and effect and it’s the other way around :sweat_smile:
Anyway by natural inclination I end up being more minimalist by prevention (not buying) than by corrective actions (throwing away)

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I’m a big fan of the principle of minimalism, I especially like the idea of stopping over-consumption. I’m convinced that you can be happy with little. I also like the idea of focusing on the essential.

Now I try to spend my money on better quality objects, on experiences and moments that will stay in my memory forever. I don’t know if I’m a minimalist but I regularly sort through my home to avoid accumulation.

Being FIRE and minimalism are complementary in my opinion, because we pay attention to what we spend, our purchases are thoughtful.

And I confirm that the documentary “Minimalism” on Netflix is excellent and shows us all the excesses of over-consumption (I remember the scene where people are crazy when opening a store just to buy stuff). They also released a new film this year : “Less is Now” if you’re interested in the topic.

If you understand french, I’ve written some articles on the subject on my personal blog : https://investirsontemps.com/minimalisme/ :slight_smile:

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I like the idea of the 90+/- days, whether you used it or are going to use it.

Agreed, then a lot less money would’ve been spent and less stuff that’s lying around.

I liked the documentary, thank you very much.

How come?

I don’t see any bad to it, whatever makes you happy. It’s just that your more mindful what you buy / keep / get rid off.

Agreed

Is it really a restrictions or can it lead to more freedom? I’m on the more freedom side of the wall.

That’s very mustachian, but what’s your rational plan for getting rid of stuff you no longer need?

Me too. Today in my cellar I found a camping chair that I maybe used once. should I get rid off it? Probably should. Then it’s all about whether to put effort into selling it or just binning it.

One way to tackle it is getting rid of x objects when you buy something new. I think one thing that helps is buying ebooks.

Exactly. One of the worst things there is at the moment is “fast fashion”, you wear it a few times and throw it away. This all on the cost of the climate and the cheap labour force in the third world.

I’ll look into it

Understanding I should be fine :slight_smile:

1: Well i like to spend money on things that bring me a experience. Did you ever tried a very good piece of meat. I mean something like a Japanese Kobe Beef or Pasta with a little bit of a white truffle from Alba? Those are things but they full of life, experience. For me is the Food and I’m sure for other people there are things that make them feel like that even if they are only “things”

2: somehow yes and somehow not. I don’t own like 5 shoes or 5 watches because i can only use one at a time so to have 5 of it seems pointless. but i do have 3 bikes. i love to eat like a king and to cook. so in that matter i wouldn’t call myself a minimalist. depends on the thing or action if i think is worth a don’t care about the money.

3: Well I’m in that Forum to learn about making some money to have some more then planned when i get retired. I’m 42 with not much savings so i don’t have the illusion of a ER . So I’m not really making that much changes in my life. Put away some Money is a big change already and like Nietzsche said “He who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk”. :sweat_smile:

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I like the idea, however I’m also a person that prefers to keep the original packaging of stuff for the potentiall higher resale value in the future. If I see the amount of toys my nephew have, their whole garage is packed with stuff and the livingroom etc. thousands of francs either unused or partly destroyed already. And when I think of the stuff my parents are hoarding I’ll get nightmares of the day we need to get rid of all that.

Now with a kid and family we have soo much stuff. Toys for my son which he didn’t touch in a year (of his 3 years of life) and there a raclette grill and a fodue set and orange juice press etc. and our basement room is packed with boxes and other stuff we barely use. I hate it.

After seeing that inflow of toys for my son, I started actively selling things of my own which I haven’t used in a while, stuff for drone flying, old harddrives, a perfectly fine GoPro, etc. all got sold now. Giving me more space (well for my sons toys really) and some money back on those dead investments.

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The answer to that was in my next sentence, kind of. :blush:

It’s difficult to motivate to reduce when an empty space is immediately filled with the 35th or so fluffy toy.

I see @MrCheese has it pretty much the same :confused:

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Reason or excuse, that‘s the question. I still think you have influence over it and why not teach your children how to consum mindfully and decide what‘s important and that it can only be a certain amount of items that you can care about.

As long as it’s not Mary Kondo’s stile (or whatever her name is). She started the fashion, but she’s from Japan where it make more sense to be super minimalist.
1 fork, spoon etc comes probably from her. She’s the one that says that you have to literally say goodbye to objects in your house that you don’t use for 90 days or so. Good luck if you break something and you need tools you just said goodbye to.
Also she has now a website that sells you stupid stuff. I think she even tried to justify the difference…
whatever.

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At the same time one of the most unused things. Why is there no hardware tools sharing platform? Why does everyone need to have 3 screwdriver’s, a drill, extension cords etc. When you could just lend it from some neighbor? I mean sure the tools get more affordable and people live in this “I need to fix/have this right now” mindset but still.

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There is: https://www.sharely.ch; https://pumpipumpe.ch/en/sticker-en/

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My flatmate owns a good set of tools. Used them maybe three times in the last 5 years. Otherwise I could always ask my parents to lend me some :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:. Not worth owning IMO

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You mind me asking if you got kids? :joy:

But i will try that with my 7 year old one as soon he gets home but i’m sure he will have for any toy at least a few reasons why he wants to keep specially that toy.

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:slight_smile:
I suppose it’s a though process to start

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How is it relevant if I have kids or not? Regardless I‘m still allowed an opinion on it. And I only see it as an advantage to teach them values that you as a parent deem important. The earlier they learn it the easier it is to stick to those values and habbits.

Sure, ask him why he wants to keep a certain toy and then he‘ll learn to argue his case. Only good can come from it. It‘s not like you have to take it away from the kid if the argumentation is flawed or non-rational, but it gets the kid thinking.

I watched the “Minimalism” documentary yesterday on Netflix (with my wife), can recommend. The second part “The Minimalists: Less is more” seems to be a bit more catchy and polished tho (more marketing than documentary).

Regardless I‘m still allowed an opinion on it.

No one said you are not allowed to have a opinion on it it was just a question because i think that most people without kids can’t really judge how it is but that is just my opinion. It’s very easy said.

And I only see it as an advantage to teach them values that you as a parent deem important.

A sever Year old boy has a attention span of a kitchen fly at least for the things that seem not important to them. If i tell him today that he will get a BeyBlade Friday you can bet you Hand that he will not forget. Your right that he needs to learn certain stuff but at the right time. But yes in the Future we will sure have that talk.

To be honest is our fault for buying so much stuff.

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