Back when I had afternoon tea with my two favourite vegans, we were chatting about podcasts and Nicole recommended the Minimalists. She also mentioned that their documentary was available on Netflix, and I made a mental note to check both out. Minimalism was something that I had seen mentioned here and there, but never really delved into until then.
I had just started commuting and needed something to keep me entertained, which seemed like a perfect opportunity to enter the world of podcasts. I started with the Minimalists and I was immediately hooked. They explain everything in a very approachable way and emphasise that minimalism is personal: it’s not about how many things you own, but about your intentions and your values. Not long thereafter, I watched their documentary. In the same evening I watched The True Cost, which I had been meaning to watch for a very long time.
I’m always seeking to improve myself, which is both a good and a bad trait (I recently took the enneagram test and found out I’m type 1, which I might write a blog post on…), and I knew I had to change my habits. I’ve known about the issues of fast fashion for a while, but used excuses like “I’m a student, I’m too poor to buy responsibly” to justify shopping at H&M. But The True Cost was the final drop.
Minimalism seemed to be the perfect way to deal with the negative impacts of fast fashion and consumerism, while simultaneously improving my own life. I’ve always been very tidy and organised, and clutter stresses me out. Owning less stuff, striving to buy less and to buy responsibly would not only improve my own wellbeing and inner calm, but also reduce my impact on the environment and minimise my contribution to sweatshops. Ideal.
Striving is the key word here. I’ve just started my minimalism journey and I have a long way to go. My wardrobe is mostly decluttered, but that doesn’t mean I’m done. Moreover, minimalism is personal; I love my books and will not get rid of all of them. I’ve donated and sold some — ones that I know I’ll never reread and don’t really like anyway — but because my books bring me joy and value, I’ll keep a hold of quite a few of them.
For me, minimalism has also triggered a renewed interest in green beauty. I went cruelty-free when I became a vegan, but now I’m making an even more conscious effort to choose green, sustainable products that are good for both me and the environment when I need to replace something I’ve run out of. Even this is a difficult journey though, because “green” and “sustainable” are quite subjective terms…
In the end, I try to tell myself that my attitude is key. With both minimalism, sustainable fashion and green beauty, I’m still trying to figure it all out and I will make mistakes along the way. But it’s a journey I’m excited to have embarked upon.
Here are some blogs, etc that have inspired me:
The Minimalists — both their articles, their podcast and their documentary (available on Netflix) are great.
The Private Life of a Girl — Sophie writes about minimalism, sustainability and green beauty.
If you have any tips on bloggers or youtubers who talk about minimalism and/or sustainability, please let me know 🙂