How I Unintentionally Became a Minimalist

Try Khov
3 min readOct 23, 2023
Credit: https://unsplash.com/s/photos/empty-desk

As I look around this mess of a space that I call my bedroom, I feel anxious about the objects that I wish I didn’t have.

Game consoles that haven’t been turned on in months lay dormant and collect dust along with the books that haven’t been opened in years.

The more I look at them, the more I feel overwhelmed.

I never really considered myself a minimalist. Sure I can live with fewer things than most people but never to the extent that I could only live off of the clothes that can fit in my backpack or have nothing but my computer and a blanket.

I feel the start towards this minimalistic mindset came when I realized that I may soon move abroad and can only bring a few things with me.

But frankly, I much prefer this. The fewer things that I have, the less attached I feel to here. And for many of these things, they no longer add much value to my life.

As I realized this, I slowly began to sell many of my things. This included a gaming PC that I so desperately wanted but realized that I barely played it.

I sold my limited edition model sets because I wanted to build them but was paralyzed by perfectionism.

What I thought would have been painful actually turned out to be liberating. For every item sold, I felt I was becoming less attached and more free.

It also helps to know that I have given these items new homes to those who will appreciate them more than me.

It’s these feelings that I now understand why some people are so passionate about minimalism.

I discussed with my therapist how letting go of things that I once wanted felt metaphorical. For there was a version of me that truly appreciated them, but with that person gone, so too is his appreciation.

To get rid of them is to make space for me to grow and add new things that align with the person I am today.

While it helps that having a little money can limit spending, I have no strong desire to buy anything these days.

Much of my spending consists of classes, books, Pokémon cards, and experiences such as trying new restaurants or going on trips.

As I’ve become more intentional with my finances, I have a weaker desire to buy material goods.

I choose to spend money on things that help me grow or align with my values. The rest simply goes into bills and other forms of investments.

Do I still get the urge to buy things from time to time? Absolutely.

I’m not perfect. There are moments when I still buy things for the dopamine hit. But being more conscious goes a long way.

Because my mindset has shifted significantly, I now ask how most purchases align with my needs and values. What use will it have for the foreseeable future? Do I want it versus do I need it?

I believe minimalism isn’t about the number of things you physically own but rather the number of things that add value to your life.

Maybe with that in mind, we can all be minimalists in our own way.

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