Living Minimalist 3
I think you remember how dining at home used to be? Homes with family, generally had what amounted to a whole lot of utensils, plates, cups, bowls, gravy bowls, soft-boiled egg holders, dessert dishes, glasses and still more glasses. That was sort of the “norm” and the standard to aspire to.
Fine dining today is a remnant of the past, and an expensive reminder at that; with suited waiters, etiquette, and fabulous table service. It’s nice to splurge and treat yourself once in a while. There’s nothing wrong with that unless you’re the dish-washer. In the olden days, a dish-washer came with two legs and two-hands. And that brings us back home.
Times have changed. People have changed. What we want have changed.
Minimalism is a change of view and awareness. It is a stark realization that we are truly products of age-old and modern, roboust and hypnotic commercialism. Our own behavior is based upon our formed belief system of “wants and desires” bombarded by effective commerials, advertisements, and shrewd marketing. Our “must have now”, “Buy, buy, buy”, “more, more, more” mindset isn’t by accident!
The excessive consumption leaves a deep footprint in the sand. If unchecked, Quick Sand!
The excessiveness can consume us, and one day we know we’ve surrounded ourselves with excessive stuff! Excessive stuff with no end in sight. The advertisements keep coming.
Relentless commercialism continue, and the advertisements roll in unabated.
Advertising designed to sway public opinion is nothing new. But Minimalism reels us back to what is being done to our mindset, our “herd mentality”. It begs us to take a look at what we are told to do despite what we think it’s not doing!
It’s hard to believe excessive stuff is bad for us especially when commercialism is non-stop, daily, weekly, seasonal, and celebrates every known and yet to be known holiday, celebration, birthday and “special day” dedicated to someone or something!
Sidebar: Commercialism Herd-mentality can start at a young age!
I remember my neighborhood kid-friend offered me a smoke when I was in grade-school. The cigarette came in a “Cigarette box” and from afar, it really looked like a cigarette but it was really a sweet, stick of white candy! YUM!
We “smoked” and it was cool. Just like the actors and actresses in the TV. By the time middle school arrived, real cigarettes from vending machines were the rage! It was KOOL!! I won’t get into this any further but its says globs about advertising and image!
Back to our Minimalist Living….
Today’s Minimalist by contrast, has a simple table setting amounting to a one-bowl meal. It’s a take off to a Monk’s one-bowl and a one-cup set up. In some cultures, “utensils” are their own fingers. In other cultures, it may be a single spoon, or a fork, or a chopstick. A single-cup is for drinking.
The Minimalist isn’t re-inventing anything, but merely applying simple but decisive mindset to downsize, declutter and simplify their daily life. In essence, its a simple way of life downsizing, decluttering and simplifying everything; shopping list, clothes in the closet, tools in the garage, bills, debt, vacation, relationships, meals, vehicles, toys, magazines, periodicals, excess stuff and exccess stuff, and excess stuff!
Other devices are giving up the “second-car”, using alternative transportation, walking for a change, perhaps car-pooling, Uber (?) or a combination of all these things. The idea here is to free yourself of the economic costs of ownership or more precisely, entrapment, just because.
The spillover effects are enormous. The clutter and junks in your home disappear resulting in less physical, visual and emotional distractions and irritations. Your environment becomes lighter, brighter, refresing. There’s less to keep track of. There is less to carry around, less to be tied-down.
There are several techniques to do this which you are already doing or in theory are familiar with for example: Donating stuff, re-cycling stuff, sharing stuff, gifting stuff, and (easier said than done) trashing stuff. All of this stuff takes energy and effort, so the fact is; once its done, you’ll have more energy for other quality of life activities!
But mostly, you avoid replacing stuff you made a good and concerted effort to get rid of! You avoid piling up stuff in the free and clear area of you apartment or your home that you JUST CLEARED! You therefore, control your stuff rather than let your stuff control you! Walk freely through your floor space you’ve just cleared, rather than around-your-stuff that blocks your path!
All rights Reserved: Grace’s Inn, located in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Grace’s Inn has been in business for over 45-years catering successfully to generations of Hawaii’s residents and visitors alike. A great place for a huge variety of food, competitive prices and generous food portions.
Minimalism can downsize your expenses. If you tend to not use your stove and oven, and incorporate meals-bought-out, definitely incorporate conscious food portioning. You’ll eat less, and stretch that meal into two separate meals, maybe even three? Or share a meal with someone?
You may be pondering, “What about how many meals do I eat?”
Well, the fact is, you don’t have to restrict yourself if you don’t want to or have to!
Minimalism makes a conscious effort to reduce our dependence or learned-addiction toward excessive consumption.
We downsize, de-clutter and simplify!
So as far as eating, this really depends on your own nutritional needs, your work demands that may require more calories, fat, carbos and protein, as well as your specific health and dietary needs. There isn’t a one-size fit all.
Minimalism is a creative endeavor to experiment, “to-try”, to get away from the herd-mentality!
One bit of wisdom I heard from a Minimalist, for anyone thinking about buying a home, ask yourself, “NOT how much money do I need to buy this huge home but how small a house can I buy to live the lifestyle that I want!”
If you’re relatively healthy, perhaps a little chunky and want to slim down, incorporate what many “monks in asian countries do”. (European monks have a different way of eating, and it may or may not have restrictions).
Asian monks tend to eat two meals a day. The last meal is consumed at or near noon time. No solid food is eaten until the next morning. An exception is if the person is ill or needs special dietary or medical protocol. Sometimes they are allowed tea. Sometimes a small sweet. But not a solid meal.
So what happens when your last meal is at noon?
Well, your body now has a window to digest your first two meals, and you virtually “fast” from Noon until the next morning. In the beginning, give yourself lots of slack: eat if you’re hungry. “Fast” as long as it’s comfortable and bearable.
Don’t deprive yourself by going cold-turkey! Eventually ease into the two-meal a day schedule and see how it goes. Drink lots of fresh water. Be mindful, this isn’t a dietary recommendation but an alternative from eating 3 or more full meals a day, including gorging on snacks. With the two-meal a day schedule, consuming the largest meals during before noon, then “fasting” for the rest of the day and most of the evening hours. It is adopting a way of eating less, and striving for a healthier body and mind.
Just another thought, don’t skimp on your optimum state of health, and certainly do not measure your efforts by becoming sickly and skin-and-bones! Some people are at optimum with the body fat that works for them! Therefore, don’t let the floor scale dictate to you, what your optimum state of health is based upon solely on your body weight or the amount of your body fat alone! Be forgiving on yourself! Honor your body and self-esteem!
Strive in applying practical and realistic balance. But overall, consuming less food in the right proportion and manner reduces excess consumption and resources, and helps your body to achieve a healthy balance.
Explore the realm of a Minimalist Life-style! It can set you free!