Get rid of all your clothes and wear only the essentials. Clean out the library and only have the book you're currently reading. These are two common principles attributed to minimalism. At its core, however, minimalism is not as drastic as it first appears.
I have been exploring the idea of minimalism for some time now. This, for some a movement of fools, for others the idea of owning as little as possible, is a very popular lifestyle for many people. The problem, however, is that many people think of minimalism as the idea that one must own as little as possible and immediately condemn it. This is not entirely true. In fact, you might not even recognize a minimalist if you walked into their apartment. My major in college was electrical engineering, but I was also closer to business processes and optimization as a sub-field. Processes, as a sequence of precisely sequenced activities to accomplish an output, is the improvement of a business in the activity it does. Optimizing these processes then addresses the efficiency of the process. This fits exactly my personal expression of minimalism. We as thinking beings deal with many things throughout the day and don't even realize that we do them by our particular process, which varies from person to person and activity to activity.
Therefore, I see minimalism as optimizing my living and thinking. Minimizing the unnecessary, minimizing the bullshit solutions and minimizing the things I don't use. Various minimalists say something along the lines of "Get rid of the books you've read" or "Reduce as many clothes as possible and wear only the essentials" etc. The problem is that minimalism can't be generalized and it's up to us to decide what is unnecessary for us. Are you an avid reader? Ok, so books are not useless to you and feel free to have a whole room full of books. Everybody has a certain predilection and collects something. For example, I'm an avid collector of old cameras and I would never get rid of them either as part of some extreme minimalism.
"Many people spend money they don't have to buy things they don't want to impress a person they don't like" by Will Rogers
Today's society has one little problem. Everywhere we can find advertisements that suggest to people that they need a certain thing and that they are not in without it. While this is the work of companies, they are only taking advantage of people's natural thinking. Pride, jealousy or envy. "I'm going to buy these clothes because I'm going to be envious." "I'll buy Calvin Klein or Apple so they can see that I have a brand and that I can do it." Actually, I don't condemn that kind of thinking. The world today is already at a stage where this is not going to change and defacto the entire economy of the world is based on this mindset. I observe myself being influenced by advertising in some way, but I have to admit that I still have such a sober attitude about it. Maybe it's also because I'm partly in marketing.
"There are two ways to be rich. Either by getting a lot or by wanting less" - Jackie French Koller
But minimalism is not only about the material side, it is also about the mental side. Thanks to the fact that I don't worry about what to wear and I have the same style of clothes, my mind is clear for more important things. I don't forget anything important in the morning and I'm generally more relaxed. The same goes for the transformation of minimalism into a digital environment. Whether it's optimizing data, folders or the overall environment on the pc. That's why you won't find more than three/four icons on my desktop. Most of the time, these are projects I'm working on and want to keep close at hand. The same is true on the internet, where I can put Facebook Feed Eradicator, for example. This ensures I don't spend half an hour scrolling through posts again without realizing it. Yes, it happened often enough. I use paid storage on google because why have another useless drive. I had four!!! That's not counting flash drives. It's the little things, though, that ensure further minimization of uselessness, better productivity and a clear head.
Make things as easy as possible, not easier." - Albert Einstein
Minimalism is not just another "fancy" name for a movement that is trending. It's a way of thinking that everyone should try for at least a week. This text is more of a personal reflection of mine. Peace and optimize your life.