Today I was over on my friend Evelyn’s blog at smallishblog.com reading her recent post Why It Takes Courage To Live Intentionally Small and it made me think to write this post. What does it take to live small? How do you know if it’s for you and can you adapt to the challenges of living small? I don’t think living small is for everyone. In fact I know several people in my life that wouldn’t be happy with living small. And that’s okay. We’re all different and enjoy different things. But what does it take to be minimalist?
Obviously when you live in a small space there is not very much storage and it is easy to always be messy. When your space is small it easily gets out of control quickly. Being organized will help keep your sanity, especially if you have small children like we do. This also applies to outside. When you live in a small space you tend to spend a lot of time outdoors and it’s easy for things to get messy. We are about to build a small storage area to keep our 2 year olds outside toys in to keep it more organized and not messy outside.
There are some inconveniences that come with living in small spaces. Having a go with the flow attitude will make the transition and lifestyle much easier. Not having everything perfect all the time is what makes life fun and exciting. We just bought some land and moved our RV out here before the water and electricity have been hooked up. So we are using a generator and can only hold 30 gallons of water in our holding tank that we have to keep refilling. This of course is only temporary, we are just waiting on them to come install our power pole and water. We chose to do this so that we weren’t paying RV rent and our land payment. Sure this is a little inconvenient but it’s actually been really fun and a good practice for when we one day live on our sailboat.
3. Not worried with “image”.
If you like to keep up with the Jones’ it may be hard to live a minimalist lifestyle. If you live a minimalist lifestyle you will have way less than most people in this society. Many people may think it’s weird that your family shares one car, or your house is UNDER 1000 square feet, or that you only have 2 pairs of shoes. If you are seeking a simple life with more freedom and less stress, I promise this life will help you get there. Will it fix everything? No. Living intentional is a daily decision and it takes time to incorporate into your life. Having less stuff just clears you time and mind to make room for the things you want to do.
4. Being okay with being different.
It takes tough skin at times to be a minimalist. Some people may make a weird face when you tell them about your lifestyle. Don’t take it personally. They are most likely not trying to be rude they just truly don’t understand the lifestyle, and that’s okay. Be ready for questions that may seem silly, be patient and share your story with others. It may spark interest in them to try this simple lifestyle too. Be proud of the journey you are on and always remember your “why” for choosing this lifestyle.
I am better at some of these things than others. I need to improve in being organized but I do pretty well at being flexible. With practice you can get better at all these things. It doesn’t happen over night. It takes time to get use to this new lifestyle but I have really enjoyed it and I hope you will too.
What do you think it takes to be a minimalist? Are you a minimalist? If so, what are your tips?