Thursday night, I had a couple hours before bedtime when I decided to browse Netflix. It was one of those rare nights when I was in the mood to not just have something on TV, but to actually pay attention to it as well, as opposed to having it be background noise for some other redundant activity like laundry.
That’s when I discovered the film Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus. I remember coming across this movie on Netflix a while ago and making a mental note of it. I figured well now was as good a time as any to watch it. And plus I had a new diamond painting next to my bedside that I thought would be a good side activity should there be any dull parts.
But the thing is: I didn’t even touch the diamond painting.
Living With Intent: The Missing Piece of the Puzzle
I’ve always been familiar with the term minimalist. I remember learning about the minimalist movement in an art history class in college. I’ve always considered it being the subtraction of things, which has a very negative connotation. However, this documentary helped me see that it’s not just the subtraction of things, but the addition of things that provide value and meaning. And that to me is when it clicked. I mean, what is this life we live if it’s not valuable and meaningful?
Get rid of the excess. Live with purpose. Make every action count. All of these short, pithy sayings that I’ve picked up over the years, my interest in stoicism, my meditation practice, just everything all culminated to a head in this film.
I feel like this is what I’ve been missing. It’s not that I ever needed more money or a bigger house or even some kind of faraway spiritual experience. Everything I could ever need is right here and if anything I have too much stuff and too much stimuli.
What I need to do is start editing my life, removing the unnecessary until only the necessary remains.
“Granular Changes Produce Grandiose Results”
I listened to one of their podcasts on my way to work the next morning and one of them emphasized that same sentiment. “Granular changes produce grandiose results,” he said. I’ve heard this same idea repeated over and over again in other situations, most recently in my therapy sessions with my nutritional psychologist.
So I’m going to start working through their 21-Day Journey to Minimalism. I skimmed through it and I feel like it’s no different from what I’ve already been doing, except this time someone else has pioneered the trail and I’m just there to follow the map.
The next thing: this website. This website has always been a place where I document my phases, but recently it’s become a place of consternation, stalled growth, and dissatisfaction. I’m going to make it a place for me to learn and to foster and document progress. I’ve already spent some time on it this weekend, now I just need to continue that progress.
As the saying goes, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” I’ll continue to document my journey here using their 21-Day roadmap as a guide. Small changes each day, that’s all I’ll do.