Discover the True Meaning of Minimalism With This Book

Discover the True Meaning of Minimalism With This Book

It’s not just about having less

On one hand there was the facade of minimalism: its brand and visual appearance. On the other was the unhappiness at the root of it all, caused by a society that tells you more is always better.

— Kyle Chayka, The Longing For Less

I started to be attracted to minimalism a few years ago. I can’t pinpoint exactly what triggered my interest, but I think it was related to my growing interest in becoming a more conscious and ethical consumer. So naturally using and having less made sense. I also liked the aesthetics a lot.

A white sofa in a white room
Photo by Ksenia Chernaya

I came across Marie Kondo’s packing methods, which can be useful, and then I found out that she was fixing people’s lives by making them get rid of things. I didn’t buy too much into the Kondo cult, her tips are good, she’s a good organizer, but that was it for me. Then, I’ve listen to The Minimalists podcast, which dived a bit deeper into the minimalist lifestyle. Little did I know that I was only scratching the surface. Again, good ideas for improving your life, simplifying it really, but something was missing. It didn’t feel right just to get rid of things, or interests that didn’t spark joy.

I hate clutter, but at the same time, there is a sort of ‘clutter’ I don’t want to minimize. All I want is to organize it, and for me, that is books, clothes, art supplies, and my thoughts. My wardrobe goes against what minimalism means, even if I keep it quite simple, the capsule wardrobe is just the bottom of my closet, the rest is magic. So, there were some conflicting ideas in my life, but I used only what made sense for me from what minimalism demanded.

Then, I received a book that made me understand completely that what I’ve been following about minimalism so far was just a trend. The Longing for Less by Kyle Chayka thought me that simplicity does not mean lack of pleasure.

The book will introduce you to the minimalist art movement, to people who adopted minimalism and followed the rules, to technologies and philosophies that explore this concept. If you are even remotely attracted to minimalism, this book is for you. I will leave you with one of my favorite passages from the book:

“The popular minimalist aesthetic is more a symptom of that anxiety, having less as a way of feeling a little more stable in precarious times, than a solution to it. The art, music, architecture, and philosophy that I’ve described [in the book] however, isn’t concerned with the perfect cleanliness or a specific style. It’s about seeking unmediated experiences, giving up control instead of imposing it, paying attention to what’s around you without barricading yourself, and accepting ambiguity, understanding that opposites can be part of the same hole.”

This book it’s not a quick how-to guide, but an immersion into all that was, is, and will be minimalism.

Enjoyed this piece? Check out what else I’ve written on minimalism:

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