There’s no doubt that getting rid of excess stuff in your life has many benefits: more space, more clarity, more confidence that the things you own actually serve a purpose.
It also feels good to call yourself a minimalist. It’s like being a vegan in 2001; it’s a little bit mysterious and esoteric. It feels cool telling everyone about your new lifestyle choice, and people seem genuinely curious.
But I think in all our excitement, we’ve forgotten to address the ugly side of minimalism—the side that makes your life (and the lives of those around you) just a little more difficult.
This tongue-in-cheek checklist will help you see if you or your partner has taken minimalism too far:
1. You get preachy about your new lifestyle.
Yes, a funda-minimalist is a thing. You know how annoying it is when someone wants to tell you all about their new routine and you’re totally uninterested? Yeah, well it’s a bit annoying when minimalists do that too. If someone likes the way you’re living, they’ll probably ask you about it. No need to force information on them, because then it just seems like you’re trying to convince yourself that you haven’t lost a few screws upstairs.
2. Your neighbors can’t stand you because you’re always borrowing their stuff.
Let your neighbors alone! Though it’s great that minimalism opens up mental and physical space in your life, it’s a real pain in the ass when you’re constantly at someone else’s house asking them to borrow that gadget you threw out last week. Either commit to the spirit of minimalism or stop acting like a fraud.
3. You’re jealous when somebody owns less than you.
You’ve become so counterculture with your new approach to owning possessions that you’re no longer jealous when somebody owns the latest and the greatest. You now get upset when their house has more empty corners and bare shelves than yours.
4. Your guests have nowhere to sit.
Did you really throw out the chairs in your house? If you want your friends to keep visiting, make sure they can sit down. Or you’re going to have the minimalist thing happen by your friends organically.
5. You’re continually repurchasing household essentials.
I know how good it feels to get rid of the unnecessary items, but please make sure they’re actually unnecessary. Stop throwing your toaster in the bin every weekend and deciding you need a new one on Monday. Only get rid of the excess, not the essentials. Maybe your essence of essentials is different from what the Grand Poobah’s or whatever your leader calls himself.
6. Your partner is terrified to make any purchases.
This is a classic sign you’ve taken it too far. When your partner is terrified with every purchase they make, it’s time to reconsider what you consider clutter. Remember, “happy spouse & you’re not a louse”.
7. Your idea of a good weekend is decluttering the house…again.
Didn’t you already do it last weekend? Go and spend time with someone other than your garage or spare room. Maybe go out and try to help a hoarder and show them the way to enlightenment.
8. You don’t want a partner because they take up too much room.
I’m not saying you should want a partner. I’m just saying that if your reason for not dating is that you’re worried that another person will make the house too cluttered, you’re being a bit silly. In the real world, demonstrating lunacy of this magnitude is known as a “cry for help” and an intervention involving large nets, straight-jackets and electric shock therapy is in order.
H/T Mind Body Green