It’s no secret that embracing minimalism can have an impact on your life in a big way. When you live a more minimalist life, you spend less time worried about the things that don’t matter and more time focused on the things that do. You already know adopting a more minimalist lifestyle can help you streamline your life and live with less stuff. But have you stopped to consider the mental health benefits that accompany a shift to minimalism? There are lots of ways a minimalist mindset can help your mental health. Today, I’ll share a few of these with you.
Health Benefits of Minimalism
The first way minimalism can help your mental health taps into the thing people associate minimal living with the most – decluttering your home. If your home is stuffed full of things you don’t need, you’re inviting a lot of unneeded stress into your life. Think about every morning you’ve found yourself scrambling to find your keys, your purse or a matching pair of socks. If it weren’t for all the unnecessary stuff in your life, you’d likely have a much easier time finding the things you truly need.
Removing the junk from your counters and shelves and making space where there wasn’t any can actually be a stress-relieving act. Don’t just throw things away. If you could really benefit from a few extra dollars in your pocket, see what you might be able to sell and post an advertisement on Craigslist or a local buy/sell group on Facebook. For the things you can’t find a way to sell, consider it a perfect opportunity to earn a little good karma and donate the things you don’t need to those who could really use them. Stop by the local Goodwill or explore local charities in your area that support causes you believe in.
Another way your mental health can benefit from a minimalist approach is that you won’t place as much value on the physical stuff you do own. Many people consider the stuff they own a reflection of their self-worth. Things like phones, clothes and cars become status symbols, and people exhaust themselves in pursuit of having enough wealth to purchase them.
When you know how to focus on the things that are truly important in your life – your family, your friendships, your career, and your passions – you’ll find it much easier to detach yourself from your stuff. You won’t feel compelled to waste your money on flashy things. Instead, you’ll spend your time and money sharing experiences with those you care about and investing in yourself. You’ll be surprised to find much more value in these immaterial things – these moments that form memories – than you thought you could.
Embracing minimalism can also help your mental health by leaving you with less to worry about. When you find ways to streamline your life and cut out the things that aren’t adding any value, you’re eliminating a lot of unnecessary decision points you were faced with before. Making choices is actually pretty exhausting, and you can only make so many in the course of a day before you’ve used up valuable energy – that would be better used elsewhere.
Keeping fewer clothes in your closet means you’ll have fewer things to decide between each morning. Likewise, cutting down your cable package will leave you with fewer channels to flip through. Making simpler meals means you won’t be as likely to buy more groceries than your family can eat.
Have you taken any steps to embrace minimalism in your daily life? If so, have you noticed yourself spending more time in a more positive state of mind?
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