Minimalism is a means to a bigger life, not a smaller one.
There are many misconceptions about minimalism—both from people on the outside of the movement and from some who are just beginning to pursue the lifestyle.
One such misconception is that minimalism is a means to check out of life or check out of society.
Many seem to assume the goal of minimalism is to sit on a beach somewhere for the rest of their days. But this is not the best way to view minimalism—at least not in my opinion.
In fact, when I wrote The More of Less, my only request of the publisher was to not include a picture of recliners of a beach on the cover. “Checking out of life is not what this book is about,” I repeatedly said to the designers.
Just the opposite.
Minimalism frees up our finite resources so we can pursue more important things in life than physical possessions. It frees up our money and our time, our energy and our focus. It brings intentionality into our life.
It frees us up to pursue our greatest passions and it frees us to pursue those things in life that bring real joy and real meaning and real significance and real fulfillment and real happiness.
And the place that we’re going to find the most meaning and fulfillment is in helping others, in serving others, in giving to others, and in being the best member of society that we can possibly be.
If you are just getting started on your journey to minimalism, please don’t see it as a way to check out of society and life.
Instead, see it as a way to live a bigger life—focused on others and focused on the things that actually matter.