Manifest plainness,  embrace simplicity, reduce selfishness, have few desires.
Lao Tzu

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Less is better, and most of the times it is more. Simplicity is the origin of a happy, balanced and contented life.

This lifestyle is a choice. Everyone can have it but no matter how simple it may sound (in a nutshell, you just need to stop doing, using and having some things), many will find it hard because of the complex daily life we have – with so many tasks, information, communication, technology, things to do, eat, buy, etc.

I believe that you can feel the benefits and freedom of minimalism only if you try it and see the actual results and changes in you, your habits, actions, thoughts.

So I suggest you give it a try and decide for yourself whether it’s better that way.

Every day I find a new aspect of life to which this philosophy can be applied.

Here are some of the things that we need to do or have less of, and what we get more of in return:

6 Aspects of Life in Which It’s Better to Choose Less

1. Less food in the plate.

The more we eat, the more sleepy we get. After consuming heavy food we don’t want to do anything else, aren’t in the mood to speak with others and our brain goes slowly.

I know from experience that eating less is connected to productivity. I am able to do more things and to do them right and consciously in the days I eat less. Every decision we take is more reasonable on an empty stomach as well.

Another important reason to eat less is that food in large amount is just not healthy. It ruins our organisms and deteriorates digestion.

To start eating smaller portions will be a bit of a challenge because of the habits the fast food industry has formed in us in the last few decades. We think that a plate full of carbs and fats is the normal amount of food that our body needs. People are used to eating more and wherever we look, we see big portions offered or even ads with kids eating a lot more that they actually should.

Don’t forget that you are doing it for yourself. Your body and mind have never been so hungry that they wanted you to feed them with such amounts of food. So think about your eating habits and try the less.

In a few days you will feel much better and your head will be so clear that you’ll know you’ve done the right thing by choosing less.

Related: Intermittent Fasting: It’s Not a Diet, It’s a Lifestyle Change

2. Less information.

Another misconception we’ve been living with for so long is that we have to know all the information.

Think about the last few days. How many times did you read something in the newspaper? Or checked websites with different information? What time did you spend listening to the radio or watching the news? And did you really need all that?

The truth is that there are certain things we actually need to know – connected with global issues, important events in our city/country, new things in our business niche, etc. And it’s okay to spend some time every day to hear or read about all that.

But there is also the fear of missing something out – which, as most fears, is unreasonable – and it makes us search new sources to collect information. This is so exhausting, stressful and keeps our mind busy all the time.

Most of the things are either not important for us, or just meaningless. If we all realize that we can’t be informed about every single thing that is going on, we will be calmer.

My advice is to eliminate some of the media sources of information you use and choose only one important website or else to check every day.

And be sure that even if you don’t search for the news, the news will find you. If something is really important, people talk about it and it will get to you in no time.

3. Less stuff.

This a big issue and more and more people write about it and tell the world how better their life is without too many material objects.

The things we have, control us. And yes, we have them for a limited period of time, but we give too much meaning to a single piece of paper/metal/etc. The worst thing is that it is often the reason for a fight, argument or worse.

Eliminate the things you don’t use. Things that you will use ‘one day’ are also only making your space smaller. Give them away to those who need them more.

4. Less tasks.

It’s a common thing to be busy nowadays and it’s often ironic what people are able to do just to look like they are always on the go.

Most of the things we do, however, are unnecessary. You don’t need to check your email every 5 minutes or do extra work that will only waste your precious time.

Write down all the little things you do every day and think about them. If they help you and others in some way, if they build your character, make your life better or are just good, then do them. If not – there is no place for them on your to-do list.

5. Less things on my blog.

I decided to write simply. I choose a minimalist template, with less colors, less pictures and fonts, less widgets (only the necessary ones so that it’s easy to navigate), and just less stuff.

6. Less stress.

Stress is a serious problem and some people refuse to believe it’s a matter of choice. I think that’s exactly what it is.

Things get worse, other people get you upset and angry, you have problems, you are in a hurry, you do too many things at once, you think too much, and all this results in stress. Not if you react to things in another way – with understanding and calmness.

And if you have a minimalist approach to your life, none of this would happen.

Here is what you get more of when you choose less:

  • time for yourself and your family;
  • space in your apartment;
  • a readable and better-looking site;
  • tranquility;
  • comfort;
  • balance;
    and many more.

I just gave a few examples to describe how simplicity can change our lives for the better. And again, it’s all your choice and in your control.

I’m eager to know what you can add to this. What other aspects of life can benefit from minimalism? What do you choose less of?

See also:

Owning Less is Great. Wanting Less is Better.
7 Tips for Fighting Information Overload
Ways to Radically Simplify Your Life

Image by philhearing @Flickr

Lidiya K

Lidiya K

Author, blogger and podcaster in the fields of self-improvement and life hacking. Creator of Let's Reach Success.
Full-time freelance writer. Lifestyle designer.
Lidiya K

32 Comments

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  1. i agree with the minimalistic and simple approach to life, i think about it and work towards that goal all the time. i also think that relationships are important to keep simple, as odd as that may sound, be open and honest and kind and leave the drama and games behind, a much happier and loving way to live.

  2. My family travelled to Orlando last month for a week and we packed light, no suitcases, just one small luggage each. It was so awesome. No need to worry about checking in bags !!!!!! We loved it. Less stress and cheaper as well.

  3. I think media consumption in general is counter-productive. Television, web or print, they are all designed to make us consume. That is the antithesis of living simply. They can be hard habits to break, but are very possible to manage. Great post! 🙂

  4. You are right in so many ways. I stopped watching TV and Stopped reading the newspaper. Am I happy man. No bad news everyday. The other things take a strong will power. I still can say no to chocolate and fried chicken. Another good post, Lidiya.

  5. Lidiya,

    Thoroughly enjoyed this post and couldn’t agree more with it! Thank you for sharing!

    All the areas you list I feel I do pretty well at keeping simple, practical…with the exception of one (blushes and sulks): “less information.” Because I have such a PASSION for mediation, teaching, and counseling I strive (maybe sometimes to the point of obsessing?) to understand all aspects, all influential factors for a person, family, group, nation, etc. And it is because of this less-tempered “passion” that I have to sometimes force myself to take a long rest, maybe even a lengthy “sabbatical” from the trenches and gutters. I know sometimes I’ve had to have dear friends, lovers, family throw me a life-preserver to pull me out! :-/ *sigh*

    P.S. So great to have you back among the blog-o-sphere!

    1. Hi there! I think that exact area has 2 sides. On one hand, we need less information. But on the other hand, we are born to learn, to strive, to move forward and all that can happen by knowing more about the things around us and thus becoming able to deal with them.
      If you are interested in something and feel the urge to know more about it, never hesitate to do so. Collect knowledge and use it properly. Share it with others and help them find their passion and direction in life. It’s a great thing that you want to know more and more. The only thing you should keep in mind is not to take everything personally. I mean try to use everything you’ve read, heard and seen only when you need it and when you rest, just learn how to ignore it. Because information keeps us under pressure only if we take everything too emotionally, think about it all the time and worry.

  6. I gave up television three years ago and love the peace and quiet. I play music instead, I don’t have a dishwasher or washer…I go to the laundromat once every two weeks. I have never had a cellphone either. I try to live my life as simply as possible.

  7. Less Technology! We turned off cable Tv, I’ve (almost) stopped Pinning…; got a ways to go, but by eliminating pursuits that are not as uplifting, I have more time for more important things

    1. I see you’ve already felt some of the benefits of living with less. Good for you! Keep it this way and enjoy your free time, space and silence!

  8. I enjoyed reading your blog. Less stuff. . . Less tasks. . . Less info. . .
    Good stuff, I am starting to follow you. I think you will be a great inspiration for my travels forward in life.

  9. Minimalism has become my philosophy several years ago. We have gotten rid of most of our stuff, and couldn’t be happier. In America, we are constantly brainwashed into thinking “more is better” and yet we live in a very highly dysfunctional, perpetually depressed and depraved society. I believe the connection is twofold: 1) the more you have, the more you want (greed). 2) the more you have, the more you worry about losing everything (fear). I’d rather be a happy pauper than a stressed-out, fretful, angry millionaire myself (but the again, that’s just me, though).

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