Over the last year I have been extremely focused on three main areas and they all point towards a common them, keeping things simple. These three concepts are minimalism, financial independence and lastly mindfulness. I like each of these concepts but when speaking with others and discussing what I believe in using just one to describe myself didn’t fit the bill.
I am enjoying the pursuit of a life based on minimalism but I wouldn’t say I am one. I don’t live in a one bedroom house with no tv, one chair one table one bed and one set of clothes. I do feel that the pursuit of shedding my life of “stuff” is a meaningful journey as all the clutter doesn’t allow you to focus on the important things in life and really be mindful of the the people and experiences sitting all around you. My favorite blogs for this idea and way of life are Becoming Minimalist by Joshua Becker and Be More with Less by Courtney Carver.
The word frugal is often looked at as a negative comment and is seen as someone who eats rice all day, doesn’t leave their house, clips coupons and hordes their money. In today’s society there is a group of people in search of a new way of life that takes advantage of the concepts of frugal living but still holds a life full of experience as important. This is known as working to reach “Financial Independence” . The basis of this ideology is that we maximize our savings, decrease spending and shun debt. This will allow us in a short period of time to have enough in savings to live off the interest created for our yearly expenses. This is also called Early Retirement by some. The future goal when reached will us allow to live a life where we have the freedom to pursue new paths, experiences and seek out our passions without the burden of the 9-5 grind. My favorite blogs that discuss this in great deal are Mr.MoneyMustache and JohnnyMoneyseed .
Lastly living a life that is simple and frugal and attempts to minimize our “stuff” should be done in a manner that Mindfulness is the key building block in life. Such a simple word is very powerful and touches every action in our lives. My take on this is that if we are mindful of our thoughts, mindful of others and mindful of how our actions will affect our world then we will have a much more fulfilling life. I could try to summarize this mindset but Leo Babauta really has a great blog that goes into this in depth at ZenHabits
As the year 2013 nears the end I reflect on the radical changes that are occurring in my life and I couldn’t be more excited.