There has been a lot floating around the internet lately that states that minimalism is only for the rich. This accusation is far beyond the truth.
I’m not a rich person in monetary terms and I consider myself a Minimalist. I started my journey when I was in high school and about to start college. Money was not in abundance for me at that time. My goal when I decided to downsize and declutter was to be able to have more mobility and freedom.
Along the way I learned that having things that were better quality would last longer and that that having less stuff to worry about meant less time cleaning thus more time to focus on school and family. It taught me what was important and allowed me to spend more time with whatever that was.
Minimalism Is Just Another Boring Product Wealthy People Can Buy
This is the article that sparked my interest to dig for the anti-minimalist point-of-view:
I could argue all day long about how wrong it is to say that you need to be rich to be a minimalist. However, in a way, people are rich when they are minimalists. Just in a different way than one would think. Rich, or wealthy, have a number of different meanings if we choose to get technical:
- Having a great deal of money or assets; wealthy.
- (Of a country or region) Having valuable natural resources or a successful economy.
- Plentiful; abundant.
- Producing a large quantity of something.
- (Of a color, sound, smell, etc.) pleasantly deep or strong.
We can be rich in other ways: Rich in knowledge, love, friendship, experience… just to name a few. And they don’t have to be boring.
If your life is boring to you and does not make you happy, then you have some work to do.
As Tony Robbins has stated, we are unhappy or even depressed because our lives do not match the blueprint in our heads. The only way to change it is to change the blueprint (our expectations) or change our lives make it match. People can only benefit from minimalism because it shows you what is most important and does not come with an exact blueprint. You decide how you want minimalism to help you with your blueprint.
Could You Be a Rich Millionaire?
The Millionaire Next Door makes a lot of great points and is extremely eye opening. Among all the books I have read on success, this one ranks high on the list. I see myself in these people, which is a great feeling. So, why am I mentioning it?
According to Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko, the authors, people who are truly rich/wealthy are not the people you picture in your head. They are the frugal bargain shoppers. People who look like any other average Joe (or Jane). They have more net worth than people who show off their money buying expensive things that do not add value to their lives. People who spend their money before they even have it have a low net worth if any at all. The book makes several other great points as well including the cars “real” millionaires drive, their occupations and their investment decisions. All important things.
Minimalists like myself can relate to this because they will likely have a few quality items, which may for that reason have a bigger price tag, but still be more wealthy that someone who has tons of cheap items. To be honest, if you saw me on the street, knowing nothing about me, you would not know that I was a minimalist or that I was wealthier than other recent art school graduates.
All that being said, minimalism at its core is about having the time and freedom to do what is important to your specific blueprint that having less stuff allows. Minimalism is not a lifestyle meaning to mock a lifestyle that “poor” people live. And it’s disgusting to know that people out there think that. It’s not a fad. It’s not all black and white and grey.
It’s whatever happiness looks like.