When we think about minimalists, we often think about decluttering and not having too much stuff. However, the most important thing about minimalism is who we truly are and who we become after we strip away the stuff. After all, our stuff defines our lives, and we buy stuff to help us live our lives the way we want to, don’t we?
A few weeks before I started this blog, I had entered my final stages of decluttering. I was still finding things to get rid of here and there, but the 5-10 new eBay listings a week slowed, I had difficulty filling a donation bag, I had more shipping supplies than I had items to sell, and, in a odd state of awe, I suddenly had more free time. At first, the shock disturbed me. I had become so used to not having enough time to accomplish everything on my to-do list, and the first words that popped into my head were:
I was afraid that I wouldn’t be able to capitalize on my newly found free time, and I spent some time pondering my new reality. Marie Kondo was not kidding about tidying up being “life changing,” but she left so much unsaid about life post-decluttering.
Fortunately, The Minimalists address this – decluttering is not the end-all be-all. It simply marks the start of a transformation – one that takes place when your energy stores is redirected towards your passions, discovered or undiscovered. And that is when we get to the magic words that minimalists love: “living with intention.”
Living with intention is simply the opposite of mindlessness. Rather than live a certain way because of reasons like:
- I don’t have any other options
- This is just the way things are
- I have nothing else to do
We strive to live a certain way because of reasons like:
- I want to make a contribution
- I want to do my best work
- I want to meet a goal
- I want to create art
- I want to be an inspiration
Intentional living is about acting in harmony with your motives and life philosophy. What that looks like will be different for everyone, but if you are curious, here is my life philosophy. If you don’t already have one, the next time you have 5 minutes of peace, grab a pen and peace of paper, and write out your life mission without putting down your pen. Don’t think too hard…just write like there is no tomorrow. Let the words flow without abandon.
Your mission is yours alone – a raw, beautiful piece of you.