What is a Minimalist Lifestyle?

 We live in a world where we have only 24 hours in a day and loads of jobs to complete, dreams to pursue and people to meet. To add to this situation we have information and things coming towards us at the speed of light. Now of course a highly skilled samurai executive would be able to use his metaphorical nanchuks  , slash all unwanted fluff , get work done and impress his boss or stake holders.

The problem though is that we aren't all trained Samurais, and in this world of consumerism we seem to want every new thing in the market. If there is a new phone, tablet or sports shoe, we seem to develop this pang for obtaining it which will not subside until we have it in our grasp. What happens then is something that happened a long time ago to all my GI Joe action figures.They are more often than not kept in some corner of the home waiting in vain for some attention.

My Industrial Business Professor in business school always used to talk about a Japanese concept called 'Mooda'. The Japanese learnt many years back that excess of anything is waste, and that they MUST eliminate all Mooda from their processes at all costs. Because of this realization they were able to eliminate unwanted wastage of resources and save a lot of time and money. This meant that they could now use the freed up time on more concrete tasks and projects which lead to the creation of world class products by companies like Toyota, Honda and Sony.

This theory is not only applicable to Manufacturing but also in life as well. We really need to eliminate Mooda from our lives!

And that brings us to the topic of Minimalism. Trust me, when i first read the term, what came to my mind was an ancient hermit clothed in the bare minimum, meditating under an ancient rock and eating very meagerly. But quite the contrary, minimalism is the act of going through the junk that we have collected over the years, finding what we need, disposing of , donating and selling what we don't need so that we can concentrate on a few things and achieve more.

Think about it..do you use everything that you own on a daily basis..or a weekly basis or even a monthly basis?..I am sure there are a lot of things that you haven't used in over a year or two years. What this does is that it subconsciously clutters up your mind and doesn't really let you focus on the things that matter.

We all live in a world that talks about multi-tasking. Multi- tasking smart phones, computers, tablets etc etc. But the human being is not designed to multi-task, and when he attempts to do so, what suffers is the quality of output. Have you ever tried talking to someone while your writing a mail to your Boss? Have you ever tried having a serious conversation with your girl friend while watching the last few minutes of the Football finals?

So in short, the fewer the objects in your room the easier it is for your mind to focus, and this situation will shoot your productivity and creative thinking process through the roof.

So before focusing on my goals and plans, i have decided to adopt a Minimalistic Lifestyle. I came across this site which talks about a 21 day plan towards a Minimalistic Lifestyle and guides you on a daily basis about what exactly to do in order to achieve Minimalism. The picture above shows me carrying out one of the exercises on the site, in which you have to empty your entire wardrobe and pack all your stuff into boxes like you would do if you were relocating. The idea is to take out , on a daily basis, only those items that you would need. By the end of the exercise you will come to know what you really use and what you don't so that you can decide what to donate, dump or sell.

(By the way, the date on the picture is wrong for some reason)

Do share your comments and experiences on the topic!

For further information go visit www.theminimalists.com (These guys are totally amazing and inspiring)

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