HOME/ Simplifying

Minimalism For Me. And Minimalism For You.

Orange flower


The following is a guest post by Joshua Becker who blogs at Becoming Minimalist. I am giddy excited to have him as guest, as I am a big fan of his and I believe his message is super important one!  Welcome, Joshua!

Simplify by Joshua Becker

{Buy Here}

In May 2008, my family of four decided to become minimalist. It was a decision made on the driveway of my suburban home in Vermont. I had just spent a beautiful spring morning cleaning my garage. Meanwhile, my 5-year old son had just spent the morning in the backyard… alone.

The juxtaposition of the two scenarios dug deep into my soul and forced me to evaluate my priorities with a new eye. The foolishness of excessive possessions became evident to me on a deeper heart level than ever before. My life  far more than I’d care to admit – had become controlled by the things I owned. My possessions were not adding joy to my life. They were distracting me from it! 

The term “minimalist” became the best word I could find to describe the transition that was taking place in my heart and mind. I became committed to live with only the essential possessions and remove everything else.

Since then, we have been on a journey to define what that means. After all, we live in suburbia. We have two small children. We are active in our community. We love to entertain and show hospitality. I work as a pastor. 

While not exceptional, our life is not identical to anybody else. It is our life – nobody else’s. And if we were going to become minimalist, it would have to be a style of minimalism specific to us. It would require us to ask questions, give-and-take, identify what we most value, and be humble enough to change course when necessary.

Eventually, we defined minimalism in four aspects:

1. We will remove all “clutter” from our lives. The process of decluttering began with the physical items in our home. We moved from room to room selling, donating, and recycling everything we no longer used or loved. Almost immediately, our home began to breathe new life and energy rather than draining it from us. As we began clearing physical clutter from our lives, we began noticing new opportunities to remove other non-physical clutter from our lives: schedule clutter, mental clutter, emotional clutter, and spiritual clutter. One freedom opened the door to another. And we walked through as many as we discovered.

2. We will decorate in a minimalist style. Since becoming minimalist, we have removed numerous pieces of furniture and countless decorations from our walls and shelves. What remains is not just clean, sleek, and modern, but is meaningful. The decorations and paintings that remain are the pieces most dear to our souls and lives. As we did, we began to discover that fewer decorations allow our most meaningful decorations to stand out and speak. Rather than subtracting warmth from our home, we find the few, significant pieces actually add it. As a result, our house draws praise from many who enter and enjoy its simple beauty.

3. We will use our money for things more valuable than physical possessions. Madison Avenue has controlled our finances for too long. The average American sees over 5,000 advertisements every day. And they all try to convince us of the very same truth: buying their item, service, or destination will result in greater joy. Since the day we were born, we have been told what needs to be bought, when it needs to be purchased, and what store we should visit to find the best value. But when we chose freedom from material possessions, we broke the control that our consumer-driven, capitalistic society had over us. As a result, we have been freed to use our finances to pursue endeavors far greater than those offered at our local department store. Rather than buying more stuff, we have helped dig wells in Ethiopia, support coffee shops in Mongolia, build churches in America, launch new artists, and feed the hungry.

4. We will live a counter-cultural life that is attractive to others. We have met many minimalists over the past few years that live a life that is far from attractive to us. They have sold all their possessions to live communally on a farm. They have packed all their possessions in a backpack to travel the world. Or they have quit their jobs to work only 4 hours/week. But we didn’t find any of those options particularly attractive. We like our jobs. We like our neighborhood. We cherish significant, life-changing relationships. Because of these realities, we have determined to live out a rational minimalism that fits our lifestyle and invites others to simplify their lives as well.

The benefits of our decision are unmistakable: more freedommore impactmore time, and less stress. Since our decision, we have sought to encourage others around the world to simplify their life, remove clutter, and become minimalist. We have discovered there is more life to be found in owning less than can be found in pursuing more. And we invite you to discover the same.

Joshua Becker’s Newest Book on Minimalism


Joshua Becker
Joshua Becker blogs about the rational approach to minimalism at Becoming Minimalist.  He writes about the joys, the struggles & the lessons that they have learned. He writes to inspire others to intentionally live with less. And find more life because of it.

 His story has been seen on the CBS Evening News, NPR and countless media interviews around the world.  His books have sold in the tens of thousands, and he has the opportunity to share his message to thousands of people at various venues all across the country.

You Might Also Like

  • Paula
    February 10, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    I needed this message. Thank you , I love your inspirational message need to start now!

  • Michael Crosby
    March 30, 2013 at 11:20 pm

    When I read where he said other minimalist’s lives are unattractive to him, I thought there was a typo.

    Then I was glad it was not. Just because I choose a lifestyle like this, doesn’t mean I need to trudge through India in a worn out backpack.

  • Connie Baum
    March 30, 2013 at 11:06 pm

    I promised myself that in 2013 I would simplify my life. So far, so good, but I have more to purge. I found this post extremely inspirational. Thank you.

  • upnorth
    March 30, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    Thank you for the reminder that is what I am suppose to do and was doing ok until about a month ago and lost sight of this goal to downsize!!

    March 30, 2013 at 4:53 pm

    Thank you for sharing this post. I’m going to hop over and have a look at Joshua’s site. I so need to simplify my life! Happy Easter!

  • Brooke {Slow Your Home}
    March 30, 2013 at 9:20 pm

    As always, I love what Joshua has to say about simple living and minimalism. His blog introduced me to a better way of life and in turn has delivered me here. Can’t wait to have a good look around!

  • Top