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Minimalism

Minimalism

We are relaunching our blog and celebrate with an updated version of our old post about Minimalism

Here’s a minimalist post to make you more minimalistic in your life

Why

In many cases minimalism can help you focus on what’s important and take away some of that noise that keeps you from achieving what you truly want. It’s one of the best ways to prioritize and zoom in on what truly matters.

minimalism ≠ getting rid of everything.
The goal is to keep what you need, and what makes you happy. 

How

Pick Areas You can declutter almost anything. Physical, mental and digital spaces alike.

What made me write this post was that it took me forever to find something in my inbox. After a digital cleanup according to many (but not all) of the 25 points by Becoming Minimalist Blog by Joshua Becker I felt that it was an experience worth sharing.

By taking inventory of tasks, work life, activities, etc. you will gain an understanding of what you really need and focus on.

Somewhat related to the minimalist movement is the idea of 80/20, also known as The Pareto Principle. The principle can be simplified as: disproportionately often 20% of the input generates 80% of the output.

There are two takeaways from this

  1. You should consider which tasks generate the most output and prioritize them.
  2. If a task doesn’t require near perfection start by giving it 20% of what you planned and see where that gets you. Parkinson’s Law states that time used for a task stretches to fill up the time given so give yourself exceptionally short deadlines for the tasks that just need to get done and don’t have to be perfect.

It’s not possible to apply the principle to everything and you shouldn’t. Think about when the Pareto Principle might be applicable and use it to prioritize.

Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, the Netflix series about tidying up, made sure that 99% of us have now heard about the MariKon method. To tidy up your life can be difficult. The fear of missing out and thoughts of “that might be handy someday” made me hoard documents, information, and old clothes that I never used and the method helps you face the clutter head on. 

My own sparknotes version of the method would be

  • Decide what you want to use a space for.
  • Categorize the things (get everything from the category in one place instead of going through location by location, you know how many t-shirts you need but if you have them spread out in several locations you won’t know how many you have)
  • Does the item bring you joy? Is it necessary?
  • Thank what you don’t need for its service and discard it.
  • Put everything in its right place. Be ready for a tough fight against yourself, personally I like the idea of taking farewell to books you’re letting go of. I’m good at hoarding information so some books that I refer to somewhat often still remain in my shelves but things are now at a much more manageable level.

Say No Time is the most valuable resource we have. I’m nowhere near as good on the subject at protecting my time as Tim Ferriss is, so I’ll let his excellent post on why he was quitting startup investing do the talking. My main takeaways were:

  • You should say “Wow, hell yes!” And not just “that’s cool”, otherwise say no.
  • Make sure you say no to things that would fill your schedule with management rather than creating/producing.
  • Know what your weaknesses are. This was a great example as I myself can get hypnotized by games and always make sure to not get caught in the “I’ll just do 15 minutes” self deception

What?

That’s it? Yes, this is meant to get you started, it’s not a complete guide. My hope is that you will take that first step and try out a technique or two.

Also, look at this TedX talk by the guys from minimalist.org, It’s really good.

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