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Minimalism - How to simplify your life with a minimalist lifestyle

Minimalism – How to adapt a minimalist lifestyle!

Want to find out all about minimalism and learn how to live a minimalist life? Then you are absolutely right here! Minimalism gets you to really clean out your home and helps you focus on the important things in life. To live more plastic freeI also got rid of a lot of things from my home. It's unbelievable how superfluous some things were in my life, even if I did feel the need to buy them at some point.

In this article, you will learn what is behind the minimalist lifestyle and what the major benefits of this lifestyle are. I'll also explain the best approach based on my personal experience and provide you with everyday tips for remaining a minimalist in the long term.

You can find a brief overview here in advance:

  1. Minimalism
  2. Advantages
  3. Tips
  4. Methods
  5. Closet
  6. Stay minimalist
  7. Closing words

Definition: What actually is minimalism?

A minimalist desk limited to the bare essentials
A minimalist desk that is basically limited to the bare essentials.

Under the term minimalism is understood a A lifestyle that is limited to the bare essentials you need for your daily life.

As a minimalist, you get rid of superfluous things in order to To be freer and to be able to concentrate on the really important things in life. The minimalist lifestyle is therefore a Countermovement to Materialism and consumer-oriented Affluent society. It is simply the conviction that Consumption does not make you happy.

Minimalism concerns both tangible and intangible things

Being minimalist means tidying up your own life and to strive for an overview, structure and a certain clarity. Minimalism naturally refers not only to material but also to immaterial things.

Here are some examples of non-physical things that minimalists strive for:

  • Health: Make sure that you healthy living and also stay healthy so that you can move and experience as much in life as you have set out to do.
  • Friendships: Build unique relationships with people who make you happy and rather detach yourself from those who burden you.
  • Passion: Do things that arouse your curiosity and enthusiasm. Things that fulfill you 100 percent.
  • Time: Use your time wisely instead of wasting it on trivial things that don't get you anywhere. Time is a limited and precious commodity.
  • Personal development: Learn and become more valuable every day. Swap stress for productivity, take on inspiring tasks and develop yourself further.

Minimalism therefore answers the fundamental question, so to speak, what really matters to you in your life and fills you with happiness.

How is it different from frugalism? The frugal lifestyle uses minimalism more on a financial level. Frugalists pursue the long-term goal of accumulating enough money through a frugal lifestyle so that they don't have to work until they retire. If you are interested, you can find more information on this in the linked blog post.

Everyone defines minimalism differently

If you have a slightly different definition of minimalism, it's no wonder. Because everyone defines minimalism differently. The important thing is to understand what minimalist living can mean for you personally. Basically, I can say one thing for sure: Minimalism creates space for new, exciting things!

Before I continue with the many advantages, I must briefly mention Two prejudices against a minimalist Eliminate lifestyle:

  • Minimalists have only 100 things in their lives: We occasionally read about "hardcore minimalists" in the newspaper. Depending on their personal attitude, minimalists naturally also have significantly more than 100 things. However, those who really only own 100 or even fewer items simply show how few things are actually needed to live.
  • A minimalist spends no money and is a "penny-pincher"That's easy to say, but it's not usually true. As a minimalist, you simply make sure that you spend your well-earned money on useful and necessary things that add value.

So don't be confused by any claims. Minimalism can be a real enrichment for your life. Only you decide which things are important to you and which are not.

Advantages: Why live a minimalist life at all?

Benefiting from minimalism - The advantages of a minimalist lifestyle
As a minimalist, you are usually happier and more relaxed - and have more time and money.

Minimalism. All well and good. But what are the major benefits of minimalist living? In order to really get this across, I would like to give you a brief insight into my personal opinion on today's consumer behavior.

Driven by thousands of marketing campaigns, we are pushed to buy these days. We "enjoy" a wide range of choices. Ownership is a real substitute for identity for many people. My house, my boat, my car, my watch.

Too many people become actors:inside by showing (especially on social media) their Replace actual life with a make-believe worldthat has nothing to do with reality. They share things with (mostly) strangers that don't actually add any value to their lives. This indicates desperation and insecurity rather than a truly fulfilling life.

This is another reason why I would like to introduce you to some of the biggest advantages of minimalism below.

1. More money in your pocket through minimalism

Who lives minimalist, also spends less money. Only logical, right? Buying fewer useless things means having more money left over for the really important things in life.

You're also likely to have less debt if you don't have a big car or a huge, luxurious apartment. To live without a car, means not paying expensive car insurance and also saving on gasoline or repair costs.

2. Be happier through minimalism

Fewer possessions - but more experiences and memories. Minimalism gives things more meaning. The people around you also make you who you are. As a minimalist lowers your stress level and you have fewer obligations. Property also needs to be repaired, cared for and maintained, for example. Those who live a minimalist lifestyle enjoy great freedom. The Things are much easier to planif they are manageable.

"If property had simply pleasures, we could stand it; but its duties make it unbearable."

Oscar Wilde (more at Minimalism Quotes)

Possession is always a burden in a way. The more you own, the more you worry about your possessions. You definitely have Less fear of lossif you are already satisfied with the bare essentials. As you need less money, your work pressure also decreases. Minimalism ultimately makes you happier - and helps you to only own things that you consider important and valuable.

3. minimalism saves you time

Minimalism allows you, for example, Less cleaning and tidying up and helps you with this, Find things faster.

Because your minimalist lifestyle gives you more space in your home. You are more organized because minimalism gives your life more structure. No untidy cupboards, no information overload, no chaos. You will definitely become calmer and calmer.

With a cleaned out closet and a minimalist closet, finding the right outfit is also faster. You are freer and detached from the obligations of society. It lies in the Psychology of minimalismthat it makes you more independent. Use the time you gain, for example, to be outside in nature more often.

4. Healthier living through Minimalism

Increased energy, a better mood and more time outdoors boost your health! You can clearly sleep better and strengthen your immune system.

Your minimalist lifestyle allows you to focus on the things that promote your health. For example, you get clearer skin and reduce the risk of getting sick. Through minimalism you learn to value your health and enjoy it. After all, you are focusing on the really important things in life.

Owning little means automatically, having more space, time and money and having to worry less. This overall package not only makes you happier, but very probably also healthier. I can think of absolutely no reason not to live a minimalist lifestyle.

Tips: 10 ideas that promote minimalist living

Living minimalist in the hammock
Minimalists also take time for themselves, in absolute peace and relaxation.

You now know the major benefits of minimalism, but how do you put it into practice? How do you live a minimalist life - and how do you get started? Here are some valuable tips that you can put into practice right away!

1. glue the sticker "No advertising" on your mailbox

Put a sticker with "No advertising" on your mailbox. This way you can not only avoid paper and Avoid plastic wastebut will also less burdened by the pile of advertising brochures in your mailbox.

2. lay TV, smartphone & co. aside

I basically look No television I only use my TV when we're having a Fifa evening on the Playstation. In the spirit of minimalism, you should also use your TV once in a while. Remove from the apartment for a few days and see if you really need it. Today's television programs don't really give you anything except new fears and a great potential for dumbing down. If you feel the same way, you can sell your TV.

Also the Smartphone is a real time killer and basically replaces thousands of things. You should really only use it for essential things. A digital detox will help you to be minimalist with your cell phone too - and, if necessary, to use a Fighting cell phone addiction.

3. clear your PC desktop on

Yes, you heard right. You can also tidy up your own PC desk. In a very minimalist way. Is there a nicer and more reassuring feeling than a sparkling clean, tidy desktop? 😉

4. Meditate daily

Minimalism also means focusing more on yourself. Meditate for 15 minutes a day and focus on what makes you strong and say goodbye to things that may be weighing you down. I can recommend the "Calm" app, which allows you to select different meditation courses and set regular reminders.

5. Do without the Internet sometimes

The Internet in particular makes our world so fast-moving. We are flooded with information and we also need a lot of it. simply time out. Instead, simply take more time for yourself, switch off for a while and invest in your mental regeneration.

Also read a few Books that bring you closer to your dreams and desires. For example, about minimalism? I can definitely recommend the following books, which you can get under the respective link:

6. Go out into nature

The Connectedness to nature has been lost to many people. But there are few things as calming as spending time in the fresh air. Living a minimalist lifestyle also means regaining our focus on nature.

7. Spend time with friends

Spend more time with the people who make you happy. You will quickly realize that good, honest and genuine friendships extremely important for your well-being - and that material things are of less importance.

8. Cancel unimportant appointments

Do you sometimes have appointments that you actually think are completely superfluous? Do some meetings give you no added value and just steal your time? Then don't be too embarrassed to cancel an appointment. So learn, say no to be able to.

9. Make clear decisions

Admittedly, making clear decisions is sometimes not so easy. But a "yes" has never helped anyone. It simply means insecurity. If you want to live a minimalist life, you should limit yourself to a yes or no. This will give you clarity and take some of the pressure off you.

10. Limit your social media activities

Social media provides new stimuli every second and means stress for many people - at least subconsciously! Stressful is both the content itself and the mass of information.

If you want to live the minimalist lifestyle, think carefully about which social media really add value to your life and when. Often it is simply boredomthat drives you to Facebook, Instagram, and other entertainment platforms.

Methods: 4 methods and approaches for minimalism beginners

Minimalism does not stop even in the closet
Sort out superfluous clothing and limit yourself to the clothes you really like!

You now know some basic tips. But how do you start tidying up and decluttering your own home? Some people find it easy to separate things, others find it very difficult. Separation also has to be learned.

You will certainly be happy afterwards, but getting there is often not as easy as it first seems. To help you, I have put together the four most effective approaches to minimalist living for beginners.

1st Eat The Frog Minimalism - Worst first!

The title is almost self-explanatory. With this method of minimalism for beginners the first thing you do is part with one of your favorite things, which you can do without in the future if you take a closer and more honest look at it.. Give it away or sell it to someone who hasn't read this article yet. 😉

This is a tough but effective start to the minimalist lifestyle. You will quickly realize that you don't need many things to be happy. With this method, the worst is already behind you at the start. Thus you will find it much easier to separate from less important things in the future.

Good to know: Eat The Frog is a method that can also be applied to many other things in life. For example, to your daily work routine. Tasks that weigh you down the most should be completed right at the start of the day. That way, you won't be pushing this ballast around all day and can work much more freely and efficiently. work more productively.

2. minimalist basket method - store backwards!

To start your minimalism with the basket method, you just grab a big basket. Now you're basically going shopping, only backwards and without a shopping cart.

For this minimalism method, you simply go through all the things in your home and put the superfluous items in the basket. Be honest with yourselfso that you really get rid of as many unnecessary things as possible. If this becomes too stressful for you, simply spread it out over several days.

When the basket is full, you can safely Give away or sell some. That way, you still make some money with things that no longer had any added value for you anyway. Actually quite cool, isn't it?

3. minimalism in the box - life out of the box!

The cardboard box method is a minimalist approach where you simply can't cheat yourself. To start decluttering using the box method, you simply ALL your stuff from your apartment into several moving boxes.

The boxes will remain in your now rather empty apartment and you will be living out of the boxes for the next few days. You should therefore sort the contents well so that you can always get to them quickly. Put the things you need during this time back in their usual place. All the things you don't need can be given away, sold or disposed of.

4th Minimalism Pile Method - A heap of misery!

Even though I haven't used this method myself, I would have liked to have seen the picture. Because with minimalism using the pile method, you bring all your discarded things in one pileto realize how many superfluous things have accumulated in your home over the last few years.

But before you throw everything away, give it away or sell it, you should re-evaluate the importance of each item in your life. Does it have no added value and doesn't make you happy? Then you probably don't need it.

I sorted out using the basket method, as I found it very easy to "clean out" that way. Of course, you know best which approach is the best way to get rid of things. Minimalism shouldn't stress you out, it should make you happier.

Don't throw everything away without thinking, but also give away, donate or sell things that have been sorted out. You can find items online at eBay Classifieds (or other Zero Waste Apps) sell. Also at the flea markets your city you get a lot going on.

Bonus tip: Learn minimalism easily online!

Often you don't even know where to start. Maybe you feel the same way. To solve this problem, there are the right good online courses.

For example Mucking out made easy* or Order in the household in 31 days*. Such offers make it easier for you to get started with an orderly household and take you by the hand in your start into minimalism.

I can basically offer you the courses offered by Haushaltsfee* and wish you maximum success with the implementation!

Tip: There at the cash desk simply give the Coupon code "CAREELITE and you will get the respective course even 25 percent cheaper. And don't hesitate to get in touch if something doesn't work.

Almost every closet offers extremely high potential for minimalism

Experience has shown that it is particularly easy to clear out your own closet. In Germany each adult owns an average of 95 items of clothing - without underpants and socks!₁ That's a lot - but THE chance to get off to a good start with minimalism. After all, no one wears all the clothes they have - so you can start mucking out without having to walk around naked 😉.

With the amount of unworn items in most closets in this country, it's no problem to clear them out. At the end of the day, you only keep the clothes that you really like. And this new order that you create in the cupboard can gradually be transferred to the whole apartment.

Additional Tip: It's best to create a capsule wardrobe straight away. This is a fairly perfect basic set of as few but very versatile items of clothing as possible that can be easily combined with each other. This means you need fewer clothes - but can still put together lots of different outfits. This is an important step towards a sustainable closet.

4 ideas: How do I stay a minimalist?

Minimalism - How to stay a minimalist?
Minimalists are those who are permanently satisfied with just a few things that make them happy

We tend to always take the path of least resistance and fall into old habits. Accordingly, it also takes some time until the minimalist thinking and acting has consolidated in your everyday life.

So how can you help yourself to live as uncomplicatedly and truly minimalistically as possible in the long term? I've got a few more tips for this, valuable tips for you!

1. lend, exchange & repair

You don't have to buy everything (new)! For example, many companies and portals allow you to borrow things like cordless screwdrivers, wood saws, coffee machines and even smartphones. This is how you save the high acquisition costs and you won't have any trouble if you want/need to resell the device at some point.

Maybe you can find someone to swap with? And not all broken things are the same. Things can often be easily repaired. So let yourself not simply tempted by the path of least resistancebut consider whether you can find an alternative to buying a new one. Be sure to read my article on the Zero Waste Lifestyle by.

2. exchange new for old

If you are sure and convinced about buying something new, then make it a rule that you give away or sell an old thing in return. This way, the number of things in your possession is always balanced and you continue to get rid of superfluous things. This is an important rule of minimalism that will help you to think and live minimalistically in the long term.

A good example of the principle of "swapping instead of buying" is the fashion sector. If you no longer like an item of clothing, someone else might like it.

It works in a similar way with books: have you read through a book? Then swap it for another book that you haven't read yet.

3. enjoy overview & structure

Learn to appreciate your new "manageable" lifestyle and enjoy the freedom of not owning too many things. The minimalist life has something liberating about it, at least for me. Something that makes me happy. At some point, you automatically think more carefully about every potential purchase decision. You weigh up whether you really need this thing - and if so, whether you can get them used and cheaper.

4. keep things visible

Let your things not disappear in the most different drawers of your apartmentbut try to keep your possessions open and visible. This will prevent you from unnecessarily buying new things that you may already own.

I used to have a wardrobe where I simply "threw" all my clothes. As a result, I had absolutely no overview and didn't know how many unnecessary and never-worn shirts and pants were actually lurking in that pile.

So I always keep my things visible to ensure a minimalist life in the long term. Quite automatically you also value the things in your own possession much moreif you see them regularly.

Minimalism: something for you too, guaranteed!

I can say that with certainty because the principle of minimalism really is suitable for everyone. Everyone can reduce their personal possessions and get rid of superfluous things in their lives in order to be happier in the long term and have more space, time and money. Minimalists pay less, lower their stress levels and focus on the things that are really important.

I hope that this article about the minimalist lifestyle has helped you and that it has made you feel more comfortable again. focus on the essentials instead of living in abundance.

Switching to minimalist thinking has definitely helped me, because I'm definitely happier. Just give it a try!

As a perfect complement to this article, as well as a guide to more time, money and satisfaction in life, I would like to conclude with the Book "The Minimalism Project" by Christof Hermann to the heart. If you like, get it here*.

Do you have any questions, tips or your own experiences with minimalism that you would like to share? Then I look forward to your comment.

Stay minimalist and happy,

Christoph from CareElite - Plastic-free living

PS: Minimalism and mindfulness are closely interlinked. In the article about the mindful lifestyle so the next step is to pick up some more tips.

₁ Greenpeace e.V. (2015): Disposable clothing, available at [16.12.2022].

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* Links with asterisks are so-called Affiliate linksIf you click on it and buy something, you automatically and actively support my work with, as I receive a small share of the proceeds - and of course nothing changes in the product price. Many thanks for your support and best regards, Christoph!

Christoph Schulz

Christoph Schulz

I'm Christoph, an environmental scientist and author - and here at CareElite I'm campaigning against plastic waste in the environment, climate change and all the other major environmental problems of our time. Together with other environmentally conscious bloggers, I want to give you tips & tricks for a naturally healthy, sustainable life as well as your personal development.

30 thoughts on “Minimalismus – So funktioniert das minimalistische Leben!”

  1. Hello Christoph,
    Super article.
    I have also been working with minimalism for a long time. I only buy what makes me happy or what I really need. I have no car, no smartphone and no new clothes. It feels really great. Except for rent, food and utilities, I have no monthly expenses... and it feels great 🙂 I have less pressure at work, I have less stress and I can care much more about things that are important to me: Sports, friends / family and social engagement.
    You describe yourself as a digital nomad who travels the world. Great !
    I would also like to take a longer trip next spring and travel for 3-4 months by bike through Europe. Do you have tips around the topic of cheap travel / food and cheap accommodation (eg wild camping) ?
    I would be really happy if you answer.
    minimalist greetings

    1. Hi Lukas, I agree with you 100%, minimalism makes you happier and keeps you from buying unnecessary things. This leaves more money for nice things. It's such a simple principle, but we are so easily seduced by advertising etc 😀
      Regarding your questions: First of all you will find in the article Sustainable travel already some tips. Then I recommend you, for example, to download the app Refill Bali in Bali. With Refill you can get free water (from cafes in the area) in your water bottle. Accommodations I book almost no longer in advance, but simply on the spot. It is much easier to negotiate.
      Feel free to write me if you have more specific questions.
      Have fun and best regards,

  2. In addition to ecological behavior, spiritual development is meaningful.
    A person should increase his willpower and love. It is important to live health-consciously and behave in an unegoistic way. It is useful to increase one's physical capacity, to overcome various challenges, to protect nature, and so on. And then in the morning, immediately after waking up, one should focus on one desire and let oneself sink (again) into sleep. Through dream control (or in the half-awake state after waking up) one can reach mystical experiences (and healing like Jesus). Man (more precisely: ego-consciousness) cannot cause mystical experiences, but only prepare them. Certain meditation and yoga techniques, hypnosis, precognition, etc. are dangerous. Dream control is possible even without lucid dreaming (which may be dangerous). You should wish for a lucid dream only if you have found out through dream interpretation that you have the maturity for it. Or, before going to sleep, you can wish that only things will happen for which you have the necessary maturity. It is dangerous to try to perceive your own sleeping body during a lucid dream. Lucid dreams must not be induced by external stimuli (drugs, acoustic signals, etc.). One may wonder whether real (not just imagined) time dilation is possible in dreams. Moreover, how sleep experiences differ from deep sleep experiences (and near-death experiences, etc.). The meaning of a symbolic dream event may be individually different and may change over time.
    It means a desecration of nature when dream researchers measure the brain waves of sleeping people. Science must not investigate everything. For example, it is dangerous when a person researches whether he has free will. It is conceivable that a person could lose his free will precisely by researching the nature of the will. Moreover, there is a danger that a person will go crazy if he wonders (as has already happened) whether life is just an illusion. The life is real. It is possible to do without scientific (and technical) progress in some areas. For example, it is wrong to build high-speed trains. If possible, people should live where they work. This will make many private cars (not company cars) superfluous. It makes sense to do away with superfluous things (luxury goods, church buildings, advertising, high non-performing incomes, the credit system, the vacation industry, armaments, etc.). The MIPS must be lowered (regionalization lowers transportation costs, an eco-car lasts over 50 years, a 1-liter two-seater car saves gas, etc.). A person can live in a small and one-storey 3D printed house (wall thickness about 10 cm) with nano thermal insulation. If people behave ecologically, the probability of favorable warming in winter increases. This is because the climate (just like life) is capable of positive development. In medicine, among other things, the lenticular method should be used against varicose veins (even thick ones). It is important to reduce or stop the consumption of animal products (and sweets and ice cream). If one has a certain maturity, one can eat a vegan diet or live on a primal diet (or even live almost food-free). The professional 40-hour week can be replaced by the 4-hour week (if the retirement age is abolished). If people behave correctly, occupations will (in the future) increasingly and acceleratedly lose their importance.

    1. Moin, thank you for your great contribution. Agree with you 100% and wish that more and more people share our common attitude. Whether minimalism, plastic avoidance or simply the naturally healthy lifestyle.
      Wish you a great new year 2018.
      Best regards

  3. Hello, I really liked the article by Ökotheosoph. We switched to an eco box because we have been living vegan for a good 3 months, or still growing into it, and except for the happiness we were missing out on before, we don't miss anything. Minimalist I am...w/47 by nature....only with the closet it will certainly get better...hope dies last. For all my minimalism, I ordered the book by Dalai Lama and Franz Alt today....ethics is more important than religion...that's the title. I am very much looking forward to it, as the Lama and Franz Alt have been with me and inspiring me for quite some time...I am very grateful that I get to implement so many things I have learned more and more. I am happy to share my 100% exclusively happiness enhancing experiences regarding veganism. To all still an inspired year 2018. great that this site exists!!!! Best regards

    1. Hi star talers!
      Great, thank you for your nice feedback and your beautiful words. Agree with you and wish you also an inspiring, minimalist year 🙂
      Best regards

  4. Hey!
    Nice site, just discovered it! However, what bothers me as a frequent traveler on minimalist sites, is the factor "birth lottery". We in Central Europe, possibly raised halfway well-off (especially from a minimalist point of view), can choose this lifestyle! Now that minimalism has become a quasi-hype, I would like to take a stand for those who cannot choose minimalism. Unfortunately, they are not mentioned anywhere. The same applies analogously to vegan/vegetarian. ;)... here in abundance it is a decision of will. But even I stood as a vegetarian before the decision, what animal from the street scrape, or eat nothing 😀.
    Furthermore, on a personal level, it bothers me that there is always reference to the "structured". You can definitely also experience life as a chaotic and completely unstructured as a minimalist ;D .... Happy 2018 to all. And be grateful that you can choose how you want to live.

    1. Hi and thanks for your feedback 🙂
      Can relate to your approach. We live in luxury, buy ourselves out of our minds and see minimalism as a step towards a more conscious lifestyle. Others live minimalist because they have no other choice. I see minimalism in our society as an opportunity though 🙂 .
      Best regards

    2. Very nice comment! The basic idea behind modern minimalism is not bad per se, but you have to be able to afford this lifestyle, as paradoxical as it sounds. And many can't, because money is a scarce resource for them. A minimum wage earner, a person on unemployment benefits or a single parent can't just throw everything away or give it away, cut their working hours in half and then comfortably jet around the world.

      1. Hi nephew 🙂
        Can understand your comment already. Minimalism is just not about throwing everything away or buying expensive things. Rather, it's about buying less or limiting yourself to the things you really need and buying fewer superfluous things. It doesn't matter if you're filthy rich or not.
        Many greetings,

      2. Even though the post is older, I have to disagree. Especially when I have little money, I can make my life richer through minimalism. Minimalism doesn't mean doing without everything, but focusing on the important things. In my early/mid 20s: unemployed and few possessions - I was content and, above all, happy. Years later, steady job, medium salary, lots of useless things - The realization: I have more than I can wear out in my life and should be content with what I have.

  5. So minimalism in the sense of reducing the possession of things is absolutely to be welcomed. Therefore, I have also reduced at home, and procure when necessary secondhand products or build myself something from leftovers.
    Unfortunately mobility by airplane is faded out here (e.g. Indonesia journey), although already only 1000 km flight distance per person burns irretrievably approx. 50 liters of kerosene (10000 km approx. 400 liters), presupposed no empty seats in the airplane.
    Minimalism is inconsistent if this aspect is ignored.

    1. Hi Alex, thanks for your comment. Minimalism is a matter of precise definition.
      I have goals in life that are often not compatible with 100% minimalism. I would like to make a big contribution so that we humans no longer bring plastic waste into the environment and since most of the waste is created in developing countries like Indonesia, I educate locally. Nevertheless, I do live minimalist at home.
      How do you do it? Don't you ever drive or buy anything?
      Looking forward to your feedback because it's a good point you raise.
      Best regards

  6. Dear Christoph,
    where to start? ... First with the fact that your blog, your website and your tips, tricks and words are very true, easy to understand and explain (for others) and, I find your articles super worth reading. Thank you for that 🙂 By chance while surfing I came across your site because I am interested in minimalism and recently transferred to my life. How did I get into it? Very simple: because I became more and more dissatisfied. I felt that something was missing. Sure, a fair amount of contentment. I was offended with myself and my environment, my life, my lifestyle and in general everything around me. It was clear to me that the only way I could change this was effectively. Only the how did not want to occur to me. I pondered and pondered, got more and more annoyed and was constantly grouchy. I found a fantastic, 5-part travel documentary on Amazon (Globaltrek is its name; be sure to watch it if you don't know it yet) and it really opened my eyes. It's not just the traveling that fascinates me so much, but the way of getting there. This also includes to renounce and thus to come closer and to recognize the essence.
    Who am I? What makes me different? What motivates me? What bothers me? What can I change immediately and acutely so that I become more satisfied again? Where is my meaning, my life? It brought tears to my eyes because I recognized so clearly what makes me so dissatisfied and what I actually am, constantly feel, but somehow did not get through. Get out of this consumerist society, this constant blindness through media, advertising and the subliminal permanent "You have to...". I don't have to do shit! I was shocked by myself and my own thought carousel, how much it influenced me and held me captive. The only way for me was to STOP immediately and live what really makes me happy. Unconsciously, I've lived that on and off, it's where I've been drawn... to nature, to wanting to be outside, to rest, to wanting to be alone and enough, etc. Also this buying, buying, buying... I always said to myself when I was dissatisfied "I have to treat myself again", then I bought some crap, where I already had a bad conscience during the shopping act, but ignored it because: "I HAVE to treat myself again". Totally stupid. My wallet and my account were constantly overstretched, constantly I had the feeling "I have no money", which was then somehow so and my frustration and guilty conscience have then seduced me back to shopping. Vicious circle.
    Well, I think everyone knows this in some way.
    I dealt with myself as hard as nails and separated myself. From possessions and ideas of ownership, from my ideas of consumption and values. "Am I worth more if I have, live or radiate this or that?" No. Of course not! But that had and still has to get into my head first. As you write so beautifully: Man is so fond of taking the path of least resistance. Me too, of course, and again and again the temptations are great. But I am helped by the one little sentence "Does this thought / this thing / this purchase enrich my life?" And very quickly I am back to myself.
    When cleaning out, I noticed that I could easily part with some things and some things were more difficult for me. But basically it was easy for me. I had a great experience when I sorted out my jewelry box and besides costume jewelry I also had real jewelry that I wanted to give away. Years ago I had once tried to sell the real jewelry on ebay classifieds. Nothing. Nobody wanted the things. So I put the stuff back in my jewelry box and for another 3 years everything was gone. I didn't use any of it! 2 days ago I took everything and went with it to the social department store and donated it. You can not imagine how happy the people there were that I want to give "such a thing" there. Why I don't ask for money for it? My answer was quite clear: Because I don't want any. It was about my inner self and the thought of giving away something for free, which surely still had a financial value. What does that do to me? How does it make me feel? It triggered a feeling of happiness in me that I had never known before. I was blissful. No greed. No clinging. No sense of power. Bliss and happiness. And that's what I missed - and finally found.
    Feel free 🙂
    Warm regards

    1. Hi Steffi, thanks for your detailed comment, which I subscribe to 100%! I don't need to say much at all. This feeling is exactly what minimalism is all about. You're freeing yourself from things you don't need. From things that weigh you down and drag you down. 🙂
      Thanks also for your feedback, that motivates even more!
      Free free and best regards,

  7. Hello Christoph,
    really a great and inspiring article! I would like to turn my life around as well. I would be interested to know how you as minimalists make a living? Even if I limit myself to the bare essentials - rent, health insurance, food, etc. still want to be paid.
    Looking forward to feedback.
    Love greetings

    1. Hi Jessy, thanks for your feedback. For me, being a minimalist doesn't mean giving up work and goals. I run a business with this project, which of course also makes profits from which uch can make a living. Therefore, of course, I can still live minimalist and consume, for example, only the most necessary.
      Many greetings,

  8. Alex's comment also has something to it.
    I also notice that the fun of minimalism stops when it comes to flying. Environmental protection, yes, everyone is on board. Just don't give up flying. Although it has long been known that this is the number one environmental sin. But without flying, you would no longer be the hip minimalism digital nomad.
    Finally, stop making long journeys and jetting around - this would serve the earth better.

    1. Moin Martin, I understand your objection to give up flying quite clearly. But please don't just read the one article on this site and engage more with my work. I invite you to join me for three months in Southeast Asia. This is not a fun event or anything hip here. We have 2 really nasty but necessary CleanUps coming up again this weekend in the mangrove forests of India. I assume you have never flown and therefore don't know what goes on in countries like Sri Lanka, India or Indonesia, how dirty it is here and under what conditions some people live.
      If this is not clarified and cleaned up, we will all suffer. Because we all eat, for example, the fish that ate the plastic waste in the sea.
      If someone flies there for a week for vacation and just lets the sun shine on his fur, that is of course something else.
      I hope you understand my motives as well.
      Best regards

    2. dear Martin, Christoph,Jessi , Steffi, Alex
      how very right you all are!
      by the minimalism is not entirely new;
      About 15 years ago, I de-cluttered with "simplify your life" by Werner Tiki Küstenmacher and on a feng shui basis,
      At the time, my son was going through puberty and secured his own personal dump in his room, but the rest of the apartment was a broom-clean, minimalist nirvana to which my amazed hoarder friends made pilgrimages .
      Then I got cancer-single parent, two kids, no child support-and was forced to minimize myself financially and in terms of space.
      To maintain my children's standard of living, I closed my savings accounts, began to pray - for agnostics: to entrust myself to my higher power, as I understand it - and to meditate.
      I was helped in this by a Buddhist teacher.
      I developed gratitude for every single day and every healthy body part.
      Also here a book tip :
      "I plant a smile" (Thích Nhất Hạnh).
      I began to forgive every person who wronged me, and there were immeasurably many of them, and to give spontaneously to anyone whose misery caught my eye.
      I learned that from a friend who loved nature,
      She taught me the phrase "pass it on" ( just pass on good things, the world is a cycle).
      I will never forget her bending over some ants in the middle of the sidewalk, enraptured, admiring their neatness and diligence.
      I became healthy.
      Three words that only someone who has accompanied or survived cancer can understand.
      Now I minimized myself professionally, which was easy because the publishing house I worked for went bankrupt and laid me off after I recovered.
      So, in a sense, I was trading health for job loss.
      Because of my disability from cancer, I got a job at a Pfennigparade company that provided office workers to large companies like BMW.
      Here I learned respect and regard for every conceivable form of disability
      A colleague of mine was deaf, short, wheelchair bound and from Ukraine, so the superlative of knock out criteria for the labor market.
      She worked full time, loved to travel by train, loved life, and photographed wonderful nature scenes from her balcony.
      Later, my daughter took up the subject and got involved with disabled people in Jerusalem, and today she works in refugee aid alongside her studies.
      My now adult son lives completely minimalist,( haha the littered teenage room), earns a lot of money with his fourth start up, which he invests sic (!) in travels around the globe to get to know the world in its now unfortunately no longer so perfect beauty and diversity and also because he loves a young lady from the US and wants to meet her relatives and friends.
      My daughter loves a young half-Indian who is doing his doctorate in geosciences in a sustainable environmental project, which he presents on trips abroad and likes to be waved to the side of the road by German policemen in the evening, where they ask him in simple subject-predicate-object sentences whether he has just come from dealing in the park or drunk from the Turkish disco because of his foreign appearance.
      I am now minimizing towards my approaching age.
      At the moment I live on 25 sqm, work in a nursing home in the care, after my felt 500th advanced training, and learn to look the end of my professional life calmly in the eye, true to the motto that you have to look your enemy in the eye to realize that he is your friend.
      minimalist means for me:
      Love you can give every day, keep your eyes open for who you can help.
      Every animal, every branch, every human being deserves your undivided admiration.
      Every change begins with a whisper.
      Trust, and you will be carried.

      1. Hi Marion, we all thank you for your view of minimalism and describing your path 🙂 .
        Enjoy a nice weekend!
        Many greetings

  9. Dear Christoph,
    Thank you very much for your great article! I have already dealt with the topic of minimalism around the Christmas season and have also parted with many things (especially clothes). But I can't really enforce this way of life, because I live with my partner, who is not minimalistic at all and can't/wouldn't part with some things. If it were up to me, one or the other piece of furniture would also fly out. There are two things where I myself can not be minimalist: Books and my crafting hobby. I can't imagine giving away or selling my books - simply because I love to enter my little library, breathe in the scent, and then comfortably drop into my recliner and drift off into another world. I tried sorting out books for a while and it felt good for a short while. But then I bitterly regretted it and longed to get back to it. Do you have an area where you can't be minimalist? And does that also mean that you can't follow this lifestyle?
    I look forward to your response!
    Kind regards,

    1. Hi Alina! Thanks for your little story and your feedback 🙂 .
      You can't force it on anyone, minimalism is simply a personal attitude to life. I'm sure you'll find a good mix at home. Can also understand your book example very well. For me, it's enough to read books digitally. But again, that's different for everyone.
      Since I go to other countries for CleanUps and educational work, I have to fly from time to time. Otherwise, I manage to live a minimalist life really well. A few years ago it looked quite different, but I just changed my attitude fundamentally 🙂 But it's also easier when you live alone in your apartment, no question!
      Many greetings

  10. Hello Christoph and dear minimalists,
    yesterday I saw the Pope film by Wim Wenders and constantly fought with the tears because of the more than deplorable state of our planet! I can not even say how deeply grateful I am to all who change something about it and be it only that they start in their own closet! I have the utmost respect for people like you, dear Christoph, who voluntarily fish plastic waste out of the oceans and take responsibility for the environmental sins for which we are all responsible! Thank you for this ray of hope, which cannot be valued highly enough!
    I myself try to live as minimalist as possible in my own area. Since I never had a lot of money, I learned early on not only to get by with little, but also to appreciate it and want to live that way, and I've also passed this lifestyle on to my children. You just live more carefree without a lot of possessions. Basically, you just have to take off your "lack-glasses" and realize: if you stare at lack, you live in lack! What is also important to me: especially with the overcrowded closets, it helps to start sewing your own clothes or knitting sweaters yourself. This gives you a completely different relationship to things. Garment and wearer form a unit, you can see the wearer's own appreciation. In addition, you realize how much time and resources are actually invested in a piece of clothing that you buy as a bargain in passing because you're bored or frustrated. And then dispose of it as a so-called bad buy soon again, because you have not found in the part what you were really looking for ... and Mother Earth groans under all this burden shifted to her!
    Thank you to all friends of the earth who think for themselves, who rethink and act!
    And keep it up!
    Warm regards

    1. Hi Karin, thanks for your nice feedback and your great comment about the minimalist lifestyle. There is really nothing more to add to that. Just keep enjoying it and keep up the good work too 🙂
      Stay clean,

  11. Hey Christoph,
    very very helpful post.
    I have noticed how little I eigendlich need when I traveled 17 months with nem backpack. Since then I try to clean out every now and then. Meanwhile, my life fits into max 7 boxes, for me still a lot haha. Will soon sort out again with the help of your tips.
    Greetings Lea

    1. Hi Lea! Thanks for your feedback and just great that you managed to get rid of unnecessary ballast.
      Best regards

  12. Use things and love people, that opposite will not work. Too much of everything and always too little. I strongly hope that this movement is not just a trend, nor that it becomes a religion. It is simply a healthy approach to life that gives everyone the opportunity to be happier. Everyone can determine for themselves how far they want to go.
    I have been practicing this for about three years, without being too radical. Result: much saved on the account, more space and an awareness of important things.
    That's what being a minimalist is all about. Be truly happy!

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