How I Chose Liberation: The Decision to be Minimalist

November 3rd, 2009 § 0 comments

Written and photographed by Everett Bogue | Follow me on Twitter

My minimalist roommate Anika just exclaimed “This life we lead is good, isn’t it?” It is, I say. She’s been living out of a backpack for awhile now, traveling from here to there, you’ll hear about her adventures and advice on Friday when she’ll be guest posting here. Tammy from Rowdy Kittens will be guest posting here on Thursday, which I’m incredibly excited about. Maybe subscribe to the RSS feed, so you don’t miss their posts!

I’ll be in Seattle for the end of the weekend with my girlfriend who’s visiting from NY, we’re seeing what that city is all about. If you know the area, let me know what to check out while we’re there.

How I made the decision to liberate myself.

I’ve always had very few possessions, but being a minimalist isn’t just about what you carry with you. It’s your entire engagement with the world. I spent the last three years in New York living with very few possessions, but I admittedly did spend a lot of money. New York is like that, it sucks you in and spits you out without your wallet.

There’s a moment when everything changes, when you can’t turn back.

I think there was a tipping point, when I figured out just how rewarding this life would be. Living day to day, place to place, consuming the minimum, existing a little bit on the fringes. Watching the busy people running around frantically trying to support their overextended lifestyles, smiling, and then going back home and writing a little. Trying to help spread a little more knowledge about where I’ve been, where you can go.

I think the moment when I couldn’t go back came when I started meeting people who were living this way, at the minimum, traveling from here and there making their living doing new and exciting things. I saw how they could get by with little, and I started to realize that I didn’t need to be making as much money (and spending as much money) as I was in New York. I hope by writing this I can help a few more people achieve this state of being.

I gradually began to stop consuming and started living.

Minimalism is like the secret room that no one wants you to know about, and how peaceful it is. We’re all bombarded by advertising every day, claiming that we need one more thing, that we’ll be happier if we just buy more. It’s not hard to understand how we’re conditioned to want to spend, but it’s hard reversing the work of (rough estimation) hundreds of billions of dollars of corporate spending to make us want just one more thing.

The rewards are infinite though. Freedom can’t be bought, it can only be found.

It’s sitting right here, you’ve just got to slowly work your way backwards from the grand buildup of possessions and spending and join us on the minimalist path.

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