Minimalism: My Legendary Collection

Minimalism: My Legendary Collection

Jun 14, 2021

I am encountering an increasing number of clients that are burned out or have a feeling, aware or unaware, that something is off. I have experienced this myself. A great starting point for recovery is to become aware of what is throwing you off, and simplify. So I thought I would write a blog about it.

Minimalism: My Legendary Collection
We live in a world where chasing more is the golden standard. More money, more stuff, more status, more work - these things are being idolised in society. Living a simple, calm, quieter live, is seen as boring, and sometimes lazy. I would dare to state the contrary. Setting yourself free from the idea you need more, to truly enjoy and explore life’s beauty, by living a simplified life is an adventure. Furthermore, it seems that at some point, everyone needs a break from the “golden standard” because the idea of more is tiresome, as it doesn’t hold any meaning or fulfilment. When people take a break from it, they fall back to …. a simplified life. They start to clean up, throw away stuff, go for a walk, sit in their garden, read a book or go on holiday’s where they can simply be. No one is running away from a simplified life. If there is a “more” to pursue, then it´s being more aware, and grateful for what you have.

“Fill your life with experiences, not things.
Have stories to tell not stuff to show”

Of course we need certain things, we like things, we develop an emotional attachment to things. The problems start to manifest when we get to much things. Therefore, my personal aim is not to own nothing but to be aware, and build a Legendary Collection of things; intentionally living with only the things that support my purpose. I am removing the distraction on excess possessions so I can focus more on those things that matter most. In short, less is more, quality is paramount.

What do I mean with that? In some videogames you collect items (yes, yes I know playing video games isn’t always defined as quality time, I’ll save that for a different blog 😊 ). These items have multiple values;

Poor quality items can be found everywhere, cheap, useless.

Normal quality items can be found everywhere, cheap, useful for a short time.

Rare quality items are a little bit harder to find, expensive, useful for some time.

Epic quality items are hard to come by, more expensive, useful for a longer period of time.

Legendary quality items are almost impossible to get, takes monetary planning, saving, adding long term value in a variety of ways to your character, and sometimes even to the people you play with.

It is those legendary items I am looking for, to add to my collection. As it is hard to find these, you automatically end up with fewer items! Fewer items that collect dust or create chaos, "more" items that add value.

The modern golden standard promotes poor to maybe normal quality collections. This means we are ending up with a lot of shitty items in our lives, that need constant attention, break down or hold no value. Furthermore, because they are shit, we don’t like them. So … we buy more, and more, and more, thinking the next item will be it. Sorry, but they will never be it. They will only add more pollution, more strain on your bank account and more stress. The same goes for how you spend time with friends, what you eat, etc.. Another force that is driving us to buy more, is our ego. The problem is, your ego is never satisfied. Even when you do feed it, it just want more, and more, cheaper, and cheaper. Stop overconsuming and you will have an immediate impact on your health and the planet.

Here are some methods how I declutter, create awareness, calmness, set myself, and clients free from the endless consumption mindset.

Be selective
Whatever it is; an item, time with friends, an event, food, travelling, thoughts, a relationship, work, be selective. Wasting your time, money, your body, and mind on anything “lesser” then legendary – or at least epic – quality is a shame. In the end it will drain all your energy, and it will not serve you any good in the long term.

Think before you buy
Do you really need it? Does it support your purpose? Will it collect dust over time? Is it really worth it? or is this something that my ego wants? If you conclude that you need it, check if borrowing, getting it second handed or creating it yourself is an option. If not, go for that legendary quality. Because of the quality, overtime, you have to consume less, and get more “bang for your buck”.

I have been considering buying an e-book for a while now. It isn’t a necessity, so I am taking my time to way the pro’s and the con’s, while also looking for that legendary quality. I like to hold a book but I don’t like to drag a ton of books around with me. So, the middle ground is to keep, or only buy books that have an profound impact on me. The key is to become aware!

Use reusables
Avoid single use products, like; aluminium wrappings, paper notebooks, plastic water bottles. Try to go for reusable alternatives. 

Instead of using aluminium wrapping, I am using beeswax wrappings. Reusable, easy to clean, biodegradable, and no chemicals. The reusable notebook I am using has also been a great addition to my collection. I enjoy it so much that I am now in the development of creating my own reusable notebook for my coaching practises (donations on this platform are used to fund this project).

Clean up
Pick a room in your house, and start to lay out all the items on the floor. Create 3 boxes ; “NEED”, “NOT SURE”, and “GIVE AWAY”. Consider these questions: Have I used this item in the last 6 months? Does this support my purpose? Do I have multiple of the same items (we all have that drawer with multiple phone chargers)? Do I really need all those cloths? Am I hanging on to this items because "it might be useful in the future"? Don’t rush it, take your time. Take some days, if needed. Let the awareness of the items you possess develop slowly. Some will notice a resistance but I can guarantee you, when you are done you will feel some much lighter.

Emotional attachment
I have a small storage box, where I keep photos and memorability’s. I recently went through it, and cleaned out like 75% of it, and kept the things that really stood out. I had a couple of pictures from where I was younger, I would say between 5-9 years old, together with my parents. I kept filtering these pictures until I had two pictures left that, for me, captured everything. Instead of having 20+ pictures with an average of normal quality, I have filtered it down to 2 legendary photos. Those 2 photos are all I need - for me, they radiate an unconditional love for a child.

I experienced a lot of resistance going through these items. Emotional attachment is a powerful thing. Even if you haven't looked at an item for months, your emotions can be so strong that you want to keep it. So, take it slow and be thoughtful about it, you don't have to go to 0 straight away, take your time. If in the end your attachment is to strong, keep it, and look at it at another time.

I didn’t threw away all the pictures. I digitalised most of them. This is a great way to create space, and declutter your house. You can do this with a variety of items, take a picture, and store them online. It is still there but it isn’t taking up space. More open spaces = more calmness (and less cleaning 😊).

Travel with the bare minimum
For a day, a weekend, or a week, try to travel with the bare minimum. This is a great way to create awareness about what you really need, what you crave, and how you feel with less things. I created this awareness during my travels. Turns out I don’t need that much to be satisfied, and I had more time to spend doing what I really like; meeting strangers, hike, and relax. Sometimes an urge came up to go on my laptop and browse mindlessly but because I didn’t had my laptop I couldn’t give in. After a couple of days the urge completely disappeared, which gave my mind the necessary calmness. 

Simple living; enough is enough
For me a simplified life doesn’t mean I am going to live full-time in my mini Van (I do say, it has crossed my mind). It means that I am going to create living conditions that are enough for me. My goal is to have a tiny house, that serves its purpose; providing me shelter, an income, and food. I would have all I need, without the strain on my bank account, constant maintenance, being worried about insurance or mortgages, having the urge to “fill up” a room with meaningless items just for the sake of “filling it up” (basically the manifestation of mindless consumerism), and being less reliant on government and business, as I don’t have the urge to consume all the time. By being grateful with enough, I am creating the freedom to take better care of myself, the people around me, the planet , and spend time on things I really enjoy.

Writing + meditation
Writing is a great way to declutter your mind. You have around 6000 individual thoughts a day! It makes sense that you can get lost in them. By writing them down you can make more sense of them. This allows you to highlight the important once, and let go of the poor quality once. To top it of, you can try to meditate. Instead of distraction yourself, calm down and meditate. Observe what thoughts come up, let your mind calm down, and reorder your thoughts. After just a couple of minutes you will feel great.

So you tell me, minimalism; building an Legendary Collection is boring, and lazy or an awesome, and responsible adventure!

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