Minimalism is my guiding philosophy.
I’m a big fan, in all respects. I try to structure my life around it, as much as I can.
In terms of my home and its furnishings, I want everything to be as functional and ‘iconic’ as possible. Bed. Wall. White space. I want it to be severe. Spartan, even.
Socially, I’ve also stripped things down. I used to like this feeling of being surrounded by more friends than I could count, and social possibilities I could pull out of my ‘back pocket’ at any time. No more. I concentrate on a few relationships now, that I try to make as strong as possible. If I can’t maintain it at a good level, I know to back away.
In a way, I know this is a reaction to the way I used to live, which I would call… baroque. Many social engagements, constantly changing environments, plans thrown up in the air to spin and crash down again. I’ve changed.
In time management and other areas, I’m much more linear now. This is what I’m doing. This is where it’s taking me. This is how I plan to complicate it – this much, and no more.
Of course, life constantly frustrated our minimalist, literal plans. But there’s still things you can do, actions you can take to steer it, in this direction. I don’t invest too much in possessions, I strictly limit the events I participate in, and I concentrate on bodily and mental strength. This tends to be unidirectional – become stronger, meditate more – and streamlines itself.
In a word: focus.
To be clear, it’s the absence of alterna-things that makes for clarity. Without them obstructing the view, I can see farther and more clearly. `But I really like x’, I’ll think; but then I’ll question it, and ask ‘how long before I get tired of x’, ‘how much will this subtract from the free space I like so much.’ By pushing it out, I can make more room for the things in my life that are already present. And they benefit, and instead of doing dozens of things not very well, I do a few, well.
It takes a while to get used to it, but it’s a very clean, purposeful way to live, and satisfying, in the end.