Intro to Minimalism

creating an enviroment of productivity

...I set my mind to start decluttering some of the things in my life, minimizing to the essentials and sticking to those choices. CL

What is Minimalism?

I've never liked the term 'Minimalism'. It's a wagon-word, as in, when I say the word 'Minimalism', I pull along an entire cart of other words associated with it.

So, let me rephrase define the word Minimalism for the use of this blog:

Minimalism is the lifestyle in pursuit getting rid of anything that gets in the way of my interests, goals, passions, and projects. Additionally, it is the attempt of transforming essential, necessary objects in my life into something beneficial, unobstrusive, and productive.

For the sake of this blog, Minimalism is not:

  • Aesthetic Preference.
  • Product Design
  • A Religious Tenet

These topics may have overlapping qualities with Minimalism but only as indirect secondary properties.

My Room

There are many aspects of my life that are outside of my control, but what is in my control?

First and foremost, I have a say in the goings-in and goings-out of my room sso I'll start there and expand outwards.

Tentative Plan

My room is my courtroom, and I am the judge. I'll be like Picard when he says

Your honor, the courtroom is a crucible. In it we burn away irrelevancies until we are left with a pure product, the truth. For all time. Jean-Luc Picard – The Measure of a Man

Moral of the story: I need to burn all of my stuff under the purifying cleansing of 🔥FIRE🔥!

No wait... that's not right. The goal is to make my room as productive as possible.

"Put Things Back Where You Found Them"

It wasn't until my college days that I truly understood what this phrase meant. (I had questions like, "Why should we put things back where we found it. If we found an object on the floor, does that mean we should put it back there once we are done with it?")

It's all about laying a correct vision. My room, for example. I should have a vision, a mental image, of an adequately clean room. This is helpful because I can make a quick assessments and know exactly where to put everything.

If I don't have a mental image of where things should be, then I'll have to deal with problems and consider their solutions at the worst possible moment, once they become obstrusive.

  • Example 1: If you don't have a clear picture of where my keys should go inside my room, you'll always and consistently place your keys in different ares of your room. Afterwards, you'll spend minutes or hours looking around your room for a set of misplaced keys.
  • Example 2: If you don't know where to store your paperclips, rulers, pencils, coins, and guitar picks, you'll begin to stick them into random drawers throughout your room. Soon, every shelf will be a garbled mess that you don't want to move or throw away because each object is important. Since you cannot easily find the numerous paperclips you already own, you find yourself buying more paperclips even though you already own an excess. Soon, you find yourself with too many pencils, paperclips, pens, and notebooks. Your room becomes so compact of stuff, you feel like you cannot rest even in the solitude of your own room.

This is why the second sentence of my definition of Minimalism important. Even if everything you own is useful and important, they can still be a hindrance. Minimalism requires organization.

If done correctly, minimalism opens up space, time, and opportunity. That is what I am trying to accomplish.

My Flow Chart

My room is messy. So what do I do now? I've been mulling over this issue for the past couple of weeks, and I think I've come up with a "Clean Your Room in 45 Minutes or Less" last minute step-by-step action plan:

graph TB subgraph Clear Out Walking Space A[Put Away Laundry] --> B[Throw Away Trash] end A --> H{Wash Laundry} B --> I{Empty Trash Bin} subgraph Put Away Misplaced Items B --> C[Put Books Away] C --> D[Put Tools Away] D --> E[Put Misc. Away] end subgraph Clean Dust E --> F[Vacuum/Sweep Floor] end F --> I

There is a caveat to this: I should already have a clear vision of where things should be placed in my room. Otherwise, this plan does not make any sense.

Agenda and Future Posts

  • Develop a flow chart for my approach to
    • getting rid of unneccessary stuff
    • transforming necessary stuff to be less obstrusive and
    • organizing essential stuff.
  • Discuss Minimalism more in depth.
    • Aesthetics
    • Product Design
    • Books/Journals
    • Workflow
    • Religion and Culture
  • Collaborate with more experienced Minimalists.
    • CL?
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