How I Became a Minimalist

pexels-photo (3)

By Kenon Lamont Thompson

In today’s society it is pretty obvious to see how individuals are starting to make a paradigm shift in their lifestyles. I grew up in the 90s (the good old years) where being brand loyal to materialistic items was very important. Things such as clothing attire, CD players (aka Walkmans), and sporting equipment were considered things that you should only have by popular name brands.

For the most part, my peers in middle and high school were not blatantly mean to others. If other classmates did not have the most expensive or newest clothing attire, it was not a common scenario of bullying because of it. Nonetheless, the individual with what was considered the best of a clothing style was a popular kid by default.

Today, brand loyalty has become more of a second thought than a placeholder within an unofficial popularity contest. Individuals from young teenagers to grown adults are now adapting to the minimalist lifestyle. I am a minimalist and proud to say it (even though it took a little bit longer than I expected).

But first, some explanation.

What is the definition of minimalist?

A minimalist is simply someone who prefers and enjoys a minimal amount of items and things – both tangible and intangible. There are many things that some of us are guilty of over-consuming. Obviously, there are some necessary household and personal items that are unavoidable. However, there are other things that can definitely be cut in less moderation or simply all together.


Understand you are giving up unnecessary distractions for complete happiness.

When I started my journey towards becoming a minimalist, I was in an “average” place personally. I was working for other companies and even though I technically registered my own journalism and photography business, I never spent as much time as I wanted to (let alone the same amount of time I was spending on the dreams of my bosses at the time).

I always knew what I wanted to do; I just didn’t completely know how to approach it. In 2014, I was inspired by a photographer friend of mine and a blog post she wrote titled “Your Dreams Don’t Work Unless You Do.” I read this blog post and knew for a fact that it was time for me to start cutting off all of the unnecessary things I was wasting time on in my life.


Enjoy your life, not what “looks” cool to everyone else.

Becoming a minimalist is more than just parting ways with things that you can live without, but also learning to appreciate what you love even more. This is another part that did not happen overnight, nonetheless I was never a huge party goer at the beginning of this journey as well. Once I began cutting back on these activities and focused more on my future (where I am right now), everything began to make more sense. I knew exactly how I wanted to go about working for myself. I needed to save money and I needed to utilize all the free time I possibly could in order to make my dreams of being self-employed a reality.


Take your time… there is no need to rush.

Making the transition to becoming a minimalist is not something that happens in a very quick amount of time. If you are used to enjoying eating out at restaurants, seeing every new movie in theaters the exact day it comes out, etc., those are repetitions that may take a little time to adjust to. Many individuals can go cold turkey and then there are people like me that have to decrease slowly over time until it is at a very minimum or completely diminished.

Here I am now, two years later in the world of being a minimalist, and I have never felt better in my life. Becoming a minimalist helped me realize that I can stop and smell the roses now. I am also learning that I am now living my dreams by one of my favorite mantras. I wish that everyone could have the feeling and control of their life that I currently have. None of it was easy at all, but I am way happier now than I have ever been before.


Kenon is part of the Contributing Writer Network at Thirty On Tap. The views and opinions expressed in Contributing Writer articles reflect those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the site.

To apply to become a Contributing Writer, click HERE

{featured image via pexels}

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