Simple Living. The Earlier, the Better.

minimalism-sooner-the-better

I find it difficult to admit most of my life was wasted chasing the wrong things. Looking back, it has become increasingly clear how I spent the first 33 years of my life chasing temporal, material possessions. I thought my life would improve as I acquired them.

It was supposed to be the “American Dream.” But I was all wrong.

While my household possessions were not extravagant, they accumulated over years—especially as we moved into larger and larger homes. Each move would result in more rooms to furnish and more empty closets and storage areas to keep our stuff. Fashions changed and thus, we bought new clothes. New technology emerged and we purchased new gadgets. Kids entered our family and with them came toys, gifts, hand-me-downs, and purchases “necessary” to raise them correctly.

Eventually, our possessions began subtlely to control our lives. We spent countless hours cleaning, sorting, organizing, repairing, replacing, removing, and maintaining our physical possessions—not to mention all the time we spent on the front end earning the money just to make the initial purchase in the first place.

Our pursuit of material possessions was controlling our checkbook, draining our energy, and robbing us of true, lasting joy.

But then, everything changed.

When I was 33 years old, we began giving away all the possessions in our lives that were not absolutely essential to our purpose and goals. Eventually, our family removed over 60% of our earthly possessions. And we couldn’t be happier. We found more time, money, and energy to pursue the things in life most valuable to us: faith, family, and friends. We discovered far greater fulfillment in life pursuing our passions than we had ever discovered pursuing possessions.

And now, my only regret is that we didn’t do it sooner—that we wasted so much time, so many years, and so many resources. If I could do life over again, I would have embraced a minimalist life earlier: my teens, my twenties, or as a newly-formed family. As a result, from the very beginning, we would have experienced:

  • Less debt.
  • Less clutter.
  • Less financial obligation and debt.
  • More savings.
  • More intentionality.
  • More presence with others in my life.
  • Less need to get ahead at others’ expense.
  • More passion.
  • More contentment.

The life-giving invitation to minimalism holds benefit for every generation. It is never too late to start no matter what stage of life you are introduced to it. But my life would attest to the fact that today is the best day to begin living with less. And the earlier in life, the better.

Joshua Becker

About Joshua Becker

Writer. Inspiring others to live more by owning less.
Bestselling author of Simplify & Clutterfree with Kids.

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Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for yet another great article. I don’t think of the past lifestyle with regret- I see it as having been a class on how material things do not bring fulfillment or “happiness”. Just didn’t know I had signed up for that course way back then – but so grateful I passed it eventually :)

    • says

      Agreed! You tried out the material-possession-obsession for a while, and decided it wasn’t for you. If you hadn’t maybe you’d be curious and wondering every time your neighbor acquired some fancy new object. Maybe you never would have taken the full leap to become a true minimalist and would have languished somewhere in between.

      • says

        I too wish I had found minimalism sooner…but at least I found it! I’m still in the process of removing items, I’ve been in the process for a year; it’s amazing how much of the stuff I thought I needed is really just clutter.

        • Becky says

          I’m in Texas and we are in a reoccurring circle of constant rain, my house is full of stuff that’s going out and I can’t get out to take it all away, it’s making me crazy. There is a path of boxes from one end to the other. I needed a little encouragement this morning, it’s going to get better!

          • Shelia says

            Keep packing! Maybe when the rains subside, the Salvation Army will come and pick it up and donate to those who lost so much in the flood. Then you can feel great about cleaning out and giving!
            BTW, I know the rain is very stressful. I’m in Texas also and have an adjuster scheduled to come and look at roof damage today– an immediate reminder of possessions zapping our time!

    • Noelle says

      Funny, My husband just said a few days ago that he thinks we’ve given away 40% of our belongings, and I asked him how he calculated that! It seems like we’ve cleared counters, closets, garage and shed so much, and we got rid of maybe a little less than half of what we started with.

  2. Thomas says

    Very well written! Actually I’m 32 and started early this year to remove the unneccesary things from my life, after a time of asking myself what is wrong and why I didn’t feel happy anymore. You know the phrase: Everything at the proper time. We all find great advice here on your blog. Would you have written it when you started becoming a minimalist earlier? There is no reason for regret. You did it and you lead by example with great enthusiasm. Carry on!

    Thomas

  3. says

    I feel the same way. I was 35 when we started a massive decluttering that eventually led us to sell our house and downsize to a smaller apartment. Now we have a lot more time and money to do activities we enjoy.

    My hope is that we can pass on some of our new minimalist habits on to our daughter as she grows up.

  4. Teresa says

    Yesterday I didn’t want to come home because there are stacks of stuff in my home right now. A stack from the latest kids event at church. Suitcases from the weekend half unpacked.

    There has got to be a better way. I didn’t live this way before. Overwhelmed by a job that pays good money that I hate and a home I no longer want to come home to. No time to take a step back and enjoy life.

  5. Kathleen says

    May I suggest a new way to look at regrets? They are just mind clutter. I am 61 and have been a minimalist for two years. I feel free and happy. Thanks for your inspiration.

    • Elizabeth says

      I love the idea of looking at regrets as mind clutter. Come to think of it, I have a lot of thoughts that might be considered mind clutter! And I don’t need those thoughts anymore. Time to let them go.

      • Crazylady says

        Such a good idea but easier said than done. Clutter that is not physical has to be the most difficult to deal with. Any thoughts to help us along Joshua?

  6. says

    A lot of people ask me if it was a hard life being mobile in an RV as a child and changing schools all the time. I tell them it felt very freeing and gave me a fantastic minimalist perspective that most people have to wait until later in life to get. If you learn not to get attached to your stuff, you don’t miss it when it isn’t there. If no one has used an item in the last 6 months, it’s out of here! Everything is fair game: clothes, tools, furniture, toys. It keeps our life current and in the moment.

  7. says

    I totally agree with this post – I was in my late twenties when I started my minimalism journey and I’m glad I did it when I did. Inspite of the fact that I was living with my parents, and had a tiny room in the house (by modern standards – it was supposed to be the maid’s room apparently), I had still accumulated hundreds of items in my twenty-odd years. When I decided to purge, I literally threw out or donated garbage bags of stuff. I still have a lot even though I have been careful with what I buy and bring into my room. I can’t imagine the time and effort for people who have been accumulating for much longer. The freedom that I have gained so early on in my life through minimalism has been infinite, and priceless.

  8. says

    Living a simple life for the last eight years (and gradually becoming eco-minimalists) has opened our lives to so many opportunities that are found in experiences, not mass produced clothing and household goods. We own few possessions, and are about to own much less with a move across the world, which frees our minds to focus on relationships and our passions in life, we wish the same “letting go” of consumer mentality to everyone.

  9. Linda Sand says

    Maybe 33 is a magic age. I seem to remember that being an important year in another life important to you. Maybe it was finally the right time.

  10. Coco says

    Lucky for me I started this journey at age 21 (2 years in and still a work in progress) but with 3 kids and one on the way it isn’t always easy, but I am very thankful I had my awakening young and that I didn’t have any more years of accumulation to deal with.

  11. Eva says

    When I read this I started thinking about what was the initial and fundamental meaning of the “American dream”. I’m not american, I haven’t even been on your continent. I must therefore have an idea about this famous dream that are much affected by american TV shows, movies and that cultural part of the US that has spread over the world and mixed with local culture.

    I was thinking…what did new americans really see in this dream from the beginning of your history and then about one hundred years ago? I mean, the “American dream” must have looked much different throughtout the years. Perhaps a new “American dream” is emerging right now? Perhaps you and many other minimalists of different kinds and talents are important parts of this change? .

    • Jan says

      You are right! The american dream of 100 years ago is not the same as it is today. 100 years ago, hardly anyone had a house they could call their own-that was part of the American Dream. Owning a house! Now a-days, kids assume they will own a house without putting in the work that my parents or even I had to. I love owning a house, but it doesn’t own me. That is where the balance comes in, like using money but not loving money so much that it obscures all other relationships. I try to have balance-if I bring something into the house-something else has to go out. If I don’t wear something for a year, I put it in a box. If I don’t go looking for it for another year-it is gone! Balance.

  12. says

    Don’t regret not starting earlier– because of your mistakes you now have the wisdom to share with the rest of us how we can live more simply and be happier as a result. Without blogs like yours, I wouldn’t have the luxury of knowing I want to live a simpler life at my young age. Blogs like yours have shared experiences with me that I never would have known were an option– so thank you!

  13. says

    I’m with you! I wish I had started my simplicity journey much sooner. I was introduced to the principals back in the mid 1990s (when I was in my twenties). I was curious about the ideas, but kept striving to have all of the stuff that seemed to be part of the growing “American Dream.” It took me a long time to realize that accumulating stuff wasn’t making me happy and that some of my stuff was actually draining me of my time, energy and money. I started simplifying four years ago and am so grateful I finally made the change.

  14. Queen Mary says

    Joshua. You are 33 years old. “most of your life?” Hubris of youth. Then again, whatever it takes. Meanwhile, why did it seem empty spaces had to be filled? What of those who had less than you did? Did it not seem that some of what you had could be shared? Our kids went through their toys every year to donate toys to charity to make room for new toys from Santa and our church adopted a family with 5 kids, twins right between my kids’ ages — they were ours. My kids believed in Santa and the Easter bunny, but had no conflict picking out special things for their adopted siblings — even if they didn’t get as much from Santa or the Easter bunny. I’ll never forget my 5 year old’s face when, concerned about his expectations, I pointed out that his Easter basket wasn’t going to have as much stuff in it as all the stuff he was picking for William’s and maybe William would be suspicious the Easter bunny didn’t bring it. My son looked up at me like I was nuts and said, “Mom, this is a SPECIAL Easter basket!” I said “OK,” and turned away as my eyes overflowed and I cried. When my kids were 9 and 7 and serving dinner in a homeless shelter they came in and demanded milk because there were children to serve. At 27 and 25 they remain centered.

  15. Stefen Trelling says

    I couldnt agree more. I came home yesterday to my beautiful house. Closets full of clothes, half still with tags. KidsClosets and Cupboards all jam packed and sink full of dirty dishes. Laundry baskets all full and machine running every day. Blu-ray disks and CDs everywhere, watched and discarded like old newspapers. Bored and exhausted faces. Bills stacking up. Empty bank account, and I make good money but its spent before its even made. Fancy new car is just another car now, but payments didn’t go away when the “new car smell” wore off.
    I wanted to get garbage bags and throw it all away. I want to leave my life it has become a consumerist prison. I want minimalism so bad I almost cry sometimes. My family will not survive the transition though. My wife will leave, she wants “the life” and I just want my life back. Perhaps our future is apart because I cannot keep going like this.

    • says

      Oh boy I feel like you I actually have cried when one day during a regular duty of housecleaning I was literally walking in a circle with stuff in my hands not knowing where to place this stuff….I have been on this path to simplify and I’ve done well but not where I want to be….my new year resolution is to try this minimalist idea one day at a time baby steps….

    • Paula says

      I feel your pain Stefan. I too was in a similar situation. I feel as if I have been searching for something in my life for a long time. I feel stuck and unable to pursue my dreams and live my life on my terms because I am overwhelmed with stuff and demands etc. I make attempts to de-clutter and simplify but it is always short lived. A band-aid really on a much larger problem. I have set a goal to really take minimalism seriously and start in the new year. I feel it is the answer to alot of my issues. I wish you well.

    • says

      Stefan, I really feel for you. We have been caught up in wanting “that life” for so long and after a while it really does begin to eat you up. Thankfully both my husband and I are on the same page (albeit me much more slowly) and are working towards a less cluttered life where we (and our children) value the time we spend together more than the things we own. Whether or not you decide to go through this transition, I guess the question you may ask yourself is “am I more important to my wife than the stuff is?”. Whilst the answer may turn out to be “no”, you absolutely deserve to have your life back.

    • misty henry says

      Thats sounds pretty rough. She may not take it all in one huge move but if you do small transitions then she may work through it with you. Focus on one thing at a time and then after awhile slowly bring in something else. Do not give up!

  16. says

    I can fully appreciate your thoughts on this ……….we were in the same boat until….we started travelling/working overseas. Being too expensive to ship & not worth storing, we sold virtually everything we couldn’t fit into several suitcases. Since returning to N.America, we’ve managed to keep ‘stuff’ to a minimum………..not easy with a 9 year old in tow!
    bhp

  17. Michelle says

    I totally agree, I’m 34 now and began the transition to minimalism at the same age you did, 33. I wish I had done it sooner, but am thankful that I realized the benefits of less when I did. Once I come out the other side of my debt it will have all been worth it. I guess I just had to learn the hard way…but I hope that it made me a better person.

  18. Jen says

    I am fairly new to this page and have enjoyed reading it. This post really got me, I thought “this is speaking to me, I finally get it- my stuff-itis is running my lfe” I have been (over the last several months) trying to get rid of things by selling by I am totally overwhelmed by the time and energy its taking just to get rid of stuff. I need a nudge/permission/etc to just GIVE the stuff away, selling its just taking waaaaay to long and I am losing momentum. But I want the cash for emergency funds. Conflicted!!!

    • Angela says

      Take one day at a time. I am very new to minimalism and every minimalist that i have read says the same thing. It is a journey, you wont declutter in one day. Check out Joshua’s weekend reads. This is where i have found several other minimalist some of which have their plans of action on how they started to declutter. Good Luck to you. You can do it!

  19. says

    I love to read those articles. They motivate me to simplify my life even further. I don’t consider myself a hardcore minimalist, but I’m definitely not attached to material stuff and luxury. There is no clutter (or so little) in my house.

    Not only do we have to stop buying, we also have to learn to say “no, thank you”. So many of the things I own were given to me by well-intentioned people who were getting rid of their own stuff… but I didn’t really need those things. I know better now, I don’t accept every “gift”.

    I do, however, like money… for activities and projects (e.g. traveling). It’s a work in progress!

  20. says

    I completely agree with you. I started living with less a few years ago and I’m still working towards getting my possessions down to the bare minimum. It feels better and better every time!

  21. Crystal says

    Thank you so much for your blog and your books. A year ago or so, we were coming home from spending Christmas with our family, our suburban packed out with gifts that we didn’t need and I found your book on my kindle and downloaded it and read it on the way home! Later my husband and I found your blog and between the two our life was changed – really!

    But we have since fallen off the wagon. Our house isn’t as full again, but I can feel it creeping up on me and I hate to have that feeling back again – I feel trapped in my own home. Why? Because I’m ALWAYS picking up things – ugh. People say, “With five, very young children, you need to expect to have lots of stuff” I would like to disagree but maybe they’re right.

    How do you get that motivation back and how do you live with seven people in the house and live simply – or is that possible?

    I would love to hear your thoughts.

    Blessings!
    Crystal

    • misty henry says

      Personally with six children I think that kids drag everything they own out and play with it daily. This constantly makes it feel like you have a ton of stuff but maybe do not. I will tell you this as children get older the toys go and are replaced with more expensive phones etc. this is where you are going to say, you dont need a new phone because yours is a year old. Lol It does get better. On another note if your home is smaller because you enjoy saving then it seems like there are a lot more toys hahah

  22. Anne Brien says

    Heavens, you’re only in your early 30s! I was 59 before I recognised and finally acknowledged that I no longer wanted lots of “stuff”. Luckily my problem wasn’t as great as many people’s because I’ve never had the money to go too mad with shopping. Even so, there was a lot of clutter and I’m still working through it. Yes, there have been times when I’ve started to think about the wasted money, time, resources, but one thing you learn as you get older is that, as someone wisely said above, regret is pure clutter – it achieves nothing but wasting precious mental space, time and energy. So I put those thoughts aside and focus on how far I’ve come and how much I love my tidier, less cluttered home

  23. Lindsey says

    There must be something about the age 33, that’s when I began my total life rethink and started to really question what I actually valued in my life. I have probably purged around the same 60% of my stuff, and actually found it to be quite easy after the initial 6 months.

    I’m 36 now and in the final stages of a giant declutter. After donating, giving away, repurposing and most importantly not bringing anything new into my home, I can say that I am in a much better mental and physical space.

    Decluttering encouraged me to get control of my finances, pay off debt, vastly reduce my spending/bills, eat better, take better care of my environment, make my home chemical free, and best of all, learn to truly appreciate the simple things in life.

    Not only was it life changing, I like to think that it allowed me to truly embrace life.

  24. says

    I’m a 19 years old. I was at a meeting about minimalism and almost everyone was older. That’s weird because the idea of minimalism isn’t anything new. Monks have been living this way for hundreds years. In US there were hippies. Details change, but the idea is bulletproof. :)

  25. Amanda says

    I am in the beginning stages of getting rid of our excess and must say, your site has been an incredible encouragement. I agree, the earlier, the better. I am 32 and for the first time in my life, I feel like I am finally getting a grip on who I am and the value of the objects I own. The Bible says not to store up treasures on earth, where thieves break in and steal and moth and rust destroy, but store up treasures in heaven. That mindset is finally sinking in. It’s definitely hard to part with my earthly treasures, but they aren’t what is truly valuable in life.

  26. Kim says

    I have just started my minimalist journey.
    My challenge is for things I need sometimes. For example, I had to buy a new pair of shoes for a job interview. I won’t probably wear these shoes very often and dont like the idea of having to store them. So it’s annoying that I bought them in the first place! How to avoid these sort of dilemmas?

    Secondly I am tossing up whether to get rid of my macbook pro. I dont NEED it anymore. I use it mainly for internet surfing and watching TV online and movies. I think its the group think culture of everyone in my house (shared flat) owning a laptop and we all jump on them to muck around. But what would I do without one?

    Ideas anyone?

  27. Toni says

    I am relatively new to minimalism. I have been working on it since the beginning of February 2014. It is a very long process indeed! But I am enjoying the Process. I am practicing not watching tv so I can get used to being without it. I just listen to classical music while decluttering. I haven’t gone through the cds yet. I thought I didn’t own much, but everytime I finish one box, I find 4 more! I am 64 and am enjoying the feeling of having more space in my closet. It is liberating!

  28. says

    I am 40 and I started becoming minimalist last year. I have been enjoying life much more now than ever! I am happy my 20 year old daughter was able to experience this feeling being young. :-) Thanks for your great posts! They are inspiring! :-)

    • Sanne says

      Being aware that we live our life forward and understand it backwards is just another basic feature of being a human being that can reflect upon itself. Acknowledging what we wished we had done different is not mind clutter – suppress these thought and they will become mind clutter. Next step is to forgive oneself and live the future we really want no matter at what age.

  29. Rose says

    i just started myself, having turned 50 this year, it’s like a new beginning. I wish I would have started years ago but things happen for a reason. I love your blog and have begun my minamilist journey. Thank you!

  30. karen says

    Agree with this post! I started my journey about 7 years ago, after 3 close members of my family died within 6 months of each other. Cleaning up other peoples lives is an eye opener to stuff. I did not want that for my kids. You see clearly what you, and others, have spent their lives, their resources, their time on, and it makes you think very hard. SInce then, I have been getting rid of, paring down, reevalutating, everything I have, and do. I can tell this is the year that I will downsize my 5 bedroom home and it will be okay. Many of the rooms, closets, storage spaces are already empty and now the final push ( painting, cleaning, etc) is happening. I knew I had really crossed over when replacing a expensive front loader washer last week was replaced by a good old fashioned, plain agitator top loader with no bells and whistles. Thank you for your website, I find it very encouraging. Best of everything good in the New Year.

  31. Paper Doll says

    I am just finishing my first year in this journey. Starting March 1st, I am ending the year having gotten rid of 1785 items. Yes, I journal them and count them. And I set a goal for next year. I am so happy I started and although I can get frustrated when I see all that I still have. A start is a start and I am happy to be sharing the journey with many others.

  32. Amy says

    While I’ve only just recently discovered this blog, I’ve been on a similar journey for the last couple of years. I feel like I wasted my 20’s doing the same – accumulating things and debt. I was about 28 when I started to experience anxiety over the fact I could never keep up with the housework. We’d just had our third baby and we figured with each child we needed a bigger house. And of course more furniture to fill that house, and more toys which I thought my children had to have in order to grow into smart, functional people. I was so so wrong!

    I spent so much of my time cleaning and tidying up that I always found myself telling the kids ‘soon sweetie, just let me finish this’.

    They didn’t need toys or a big house, they just needed me. Their toys would always end up in the living area or kitchen near me, never in the large play room that we thought we needed.

    Our lease came to an end and I realised we needed a major change in our lives. I began purging the excess, selling it all online or donating to charity. Every day for weeks I’d fill the back of our SUV with things to donate. I couldn’t believe how much stuff we had to give away. And I felt incredibly blessed to be able to bless someone less fortunate with what was considered our junk but could mean everything to them.

    We literally got rid of half of our stuff – half the furniture, half the linen, half the toys, more than half the kitchen gadgets which just collected dust.

    We moved into a house approximately 1/3 the size of our previous one. And I continued to purge. It seemed the more I got rid of the less I wanted.

    Somehow, two years later I’m still finding stuff to get rid of, and I’m choosing to move into an even smaller house next month, one less bedroom, one less living space.

    A marriage breakup a few months ago meant even more stuff left my home, and as more time passes the more I realise how desperately I want to live a simple life, filled with quality time with my little ones and loved ones, not filled with anxiety over maintaining the stuff I bought on credit.

  33. Tracy Lieberman says

    You found something at 33! As a 50 year old I think that is amazing. And maybe the 60 year old will find the fact that I found minimalism at 49 amazing. Time is precious and now you are not devoting your life to pursuing “things” you are golden!

  34. says

    Thanks Josh for this article. I have been inspired, partly by your site, to start living a more minimalist life and selling things I don’t need. I feel so much better since I have done it and I am going to continue.

  35. says

    Decluttering life is going to be on priority in my life now. I always believed that but after I got married in 2005, knowingly or unknowingly many things entered in my life… watches, shoes, clothes and accessories all started piling up. Now, at 45 I want to get rid of all those things so I can breath again. I have just one debt on the house which also I want to get rid of as soon as I can.

  36. says

    “we began giving away all the possessions in our lives that were not absolutely essential to our purpose and goals”

    I think this is one of the key points. Too many of us acquire possessions that serve no real purpose.

  37. Jacalyn says

    I am so thankful that others are experiencing the feeling to minimize, it is so refreshing and a room that has less clutter provides rest and restoration. I am 30, still enjoying an apartment with my husband and planning to become homeowners within this next year. We are trusting God to provide and lead the way. Although the “nice to have” mentality seeps in once in awhile, I am a huge believer that less is more. It comes down to appreciating what we have, and to focus on others instead of ourselves. We live in the wealthiest country in America, and for that I am eternally grateful. Excited to see what God has in store for us in the years to come, spreading the Joy that this lifestyle brings.

    • Susan says

      You will probably enjoy these verses of Scripture:
      Proverbs 30:8,9 ..give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown You and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’
      Hebrews 13:5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
      Psalm 16:5,6 Lord, You have assigned me my portion and my cup; You have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.
      I Timothy 6:6,8 Abut godliness with contentment is great gain. Abut if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.

      They have made a huge difference for me.

  38. Vicki Cook says

    I was 55 when I started to declutter. It’s been over a year now, and I’ve made significant progress. But it’s a process, not a destination. And I think the important point is that it’s never too late to start!

  39. Tana says

    I am just starting to jump into this and feel overwhelmed. I am in financial hardship because of health conditions.I want to be able to get something in return for my life’s accumulation of things.Yet physically I find all this challenging,especially the work with chronic pain I experience.I want to do this not only for me but my adult daughter so she will have an easy job once I am gone.Any ideas to start off this task with a faster result? Not sure zi have years to achieve this goal.

    • Jeannie says

      Tana… Just start off really slow. Pick one drawer.. I did a my Kitchen ‘junk’ draw as I go in their often. Every time I open that drawer I am encourage and want to do more. I do it is spurts and seasonally so it is a work in progress. One day I might just be looking for something in a drawer or closet and the next thing you know I have started de-cluttering it. You will get there but just start small and enjoy your accomplishment… Good luck!!

  40. Lizzie says

    Just a comment American Dream. When this country was established, it meant FREEDOM AND LIBERTY…that included whether you wanted to have possession or not have possessions. The early settlers left family and possessions behind for liberty. Those who fought the American Revolution were willing to lose all (and most did) for liberty. The question remains, “What are Americans willing to do without or lose or forfeit for Liberty?”
    Our consumer driven society has left us, not with Liberty, but with monetary slavery and our “classless” society has become, well, to be quite honest, quite polar…Getting rid of the excess will not only make life simpler but will remove the scales from our eyes so that we more easily see the chains that bind us.

  41. Susan says

    Having recently cleaned the house of a life-long hoarder, I can see differences in my own attitudes toward possessions. I have never been a hoarder type or the type to accumulate lots of things. I do like to know I have groceries ahead. Clothes, books, other lovely things are not so much a priority. I also was haunted by the hoarder lifestyle I discovered in the home I cleaned. My heart was broken. It bothered me for months. I am just now getting beyond it. Minimalism is such an appealing lifestyle. I don’t want my family to ever go through what I did, once I’m gone. Truly the household bossed this person around and she had no control of it at all. Tragic.

  42. says

    I’m 25 and I have been moving toward minimalism for the past year or two. It’s nice to know that I have my whole life ahead of me to engage in my experiences and take time with my family rather than focusing on “stuff.”

    I truly look forward to seeing what the new generation being raised by minimalists now will be like when they’re my age.

    But I agree, it’s never too late! I think it’s much better to find minimalism later in life than not to find it at all. It’s just easier to declutter when you’re young and too poor to buy much in the first place.

  43. says

    It’s taken me until I was almost 50 to realise everything you wrote in the above article is so very true. With plans to travel long term in a couple of years time I am very happily becoming minimalist!

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