Minimalism is generally seen as a major downsizing lifestyle change. That’s great and absolutely part of it, but to me minimalism has come to be so much more than that. Working your way toward minimalism really starts more in the mind than anywhere else and has the power to change multiple areas of your life. The more you work toward clearing the clutter from your space, your mind, and your life the more you are able to get intentional about the things you really want out of yourself. Getting intentional also means you gradually drop the need for things you used to think you had to have. In my life those things have been my schedule, my shoes and junk foods. Let me walk you through how I gave myself and my life a full makeover with the minimalist diet.
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Having a minimalist mind set has totally shaped me into a happier, healthier more at peace person than I ever used to be. People hear about the minimalist movement and assume that it is all tiny houses and living with nothing but a bed and a back pack. Let me put these rumors to rest and tell you that it goes far beyond things. That’s the point entirely. It means not letting things have a hold of you anymore; whether those things are materials, foods or even a job status. At the end of the day, we can’t take any of these things with us. At the end of your life you won’t remember the closet of clothes or your super awesome car. Your job title won’t matter. How you lived will matter. Who you made an impact on will matter. Having a minimalist mindset means stress free living, guilt free, wise eating, no more shopping addictions, no more credit card debt, more traveling and more happy days.
See my best tips of getting out of debt
Working toward minimalism it is absolutely essential that you know what you want out of life. Get specific and don’t let anything deter you from your goals. Even if that means you want a big house on a lake and a yacht.
Personally, I want a life where I don’t spend my weekends doing a ton of yard or house work. I want to travel, soak up my family and friends, feel good in my body, live a long time and do it without financial stress. This coming from a girl who used to buy a new pair of shoes (or more) every month. Shopping was essential to my happiness (although it added to my stress) and credit card debt was something I enjoyed racking up and paying off. It was an endless cycle of temporarily getting what I wanted and never getting what I wanted long term. My family and I would take fun long vacations and I would buy a ton of souvenirs, Starbucks on the credit card every day and going out to eat at all the coolest places. Non of this is bad stuff, but it was ultimately taking me away from most of my goals. After vacation ended, it was like a hamster wheel of trying to play catch up and get the credit card paid off. Don’t miss how we finally paid off our debts. We had cupboards filled with mugs and shot glasses from different cities and places and they spent 364 days a year collecting dust. My kids grew out of their souvenir t-shirts and now they are sitting in a memory box surviving no purpose.
There is no easier way to get yourself started on a minimalist diet than simply tweaking a few things in your mind. Switching your mind into total happiness mode. This is when your list of goals comes into play and will test your ability to say, “no.” Before you do anything, buy anything, go anywhere or eat anything ask yourself these few things:
Let me show you how these questions work with shopping purchases, food choices and life choices.
Shopping was a killer for me, passing a CLEARANCE or SALE sign was unheard of. I considered myself a bargain shopper. It felt necessary to stock up on something if I was getting it for less. Now I barely give these signs a second glance. My biggest realization was that there was ALWAYS one of these signs up. I wasn’t getting in on anything special. I was actually losing out on cash that could have been spent on bigger goals. Now when I see a pair of shoes or a dress I adore I ask myself those three questions.
I’m so thankful now to have realized just how many ways there are to save on the things that I buy in every day life. The online site, BeFrugal allows you to search coupons, discounts and rebates from all sorts of different businesses and deals and gives you money back for your purchases.
Ibotta is another money making app that I use every time I go shopping. I give their “coupons” a quick scan and select any that I think I might use that day, after shopping I can take a quick picture of my receipt and then receive money back on my purchase.
Lastly, there is Dosh. Dosh is an app that is similar to BeFrugal and Ibotta in the sense that it refunds your money for certain purchase, except it takes all the effort out of it. Dosh reviews your purchases and automatically gives you any discounts that you are entitled to without you having to do anything.
Food has been a struggle for me. I think it is for everyone at some point, whether it’s getting too much or not getting enough. Once I started living more minimal, I started to be able to listen to my body better. It became clear what wasn’t good for me. Nights used to be spent in front of the mirror feeling bad about myself, feeling bloated and unhappy. When I started to realize that I had gluten food intolerances, I began to realize that feeling bad at the end of each day was a result of eating those foods. Most people who struggle with food have a certain weight goal they are trying to reach and thinking about that goal naturally makes the food aspect that much more tempting. Now when my family orders a pizza (and I can’t eat the gluten) I go through my questions.
As a healthy, clean, whole foods eater, I know my priorities are to feel good in my body and eating well helps me obtain that. It’s no longer about a size or a weight goal.
See my top health posts
Life brings us a ton of choices. New jobs, new friends, new groups to join, trips to take, games to play… The biggest one for me is probably going out with my friends. I need those nights. Being a stay at home homeschooling mom, I need my nights out and I defiantly get them. I even budget for them. However, sometimes those three questions go a little something like this:
Easy Snacks for a Fun Night In
When you start to think of minimalism think of it as a way of decluttering all the stuff that doesn’t really matter in life. The stuff that isn’t important. The more you clear out the clutter from your closet, cupboard or cranium the more perspective you gain. Getting rid of the excess helps you focus directly on big picture. With your tunnel vision focused on your big time goals, you will be totally unstoppable. I promise.
$5 Meal Plan – The $5 meal plan was created by a busy mother of 4 for other busy mother’s out there. Get access to healthy meal plans that take all the guess work out of what to make for your family!
BeFrugal – Be Frugal is an online resources for the best coupons around. In stores, online or in restaurants.
Dosh – Dosh is an app that links up to your credit cards (or qualifying debit cards) and gives you money back on purchases you make. It works like other cash back apps by refunding you money on qualifying purchases. Only you don’t have to keep track, it scans discounts and gives you money back automatically!
IBotta – IBotta is a totally free app that pays you $10 just for signing up. With this app you can get paid for the things you already plan on buying!
Love and Money – Online courses to help couples and family get finances together in order to stay together!
Paperless Home – The paperless home guides you step by step through how to start creating a home where all of your most important information can always be in one place and always at your finger tips!
Simplify + Planner – Abby Lawson from Just a Girl and Her Blog has a great and inexpensive planner to help you get intentionally organized. Starting a blog can be very overwhelming and getting a little organized can go a long way.
Target Debit Card – If you shop at Target as much as me, you should definitely get in on the debit card if you haven’t already. All it does is remove money from your regular checking account like a regular debit card, but saves you 5% on your purchases every time you use it!
Blue Host – Blue Host is my personal hosting site that I have used since the beginning of my blog. Check out my easy step by step guide to get yourself all set up: How to Start a Blog. The best part is, you can get started for as little as $3.95 a month!
Building a Framework – Building a Framework is the best course for getting a new blog up and running. I purchased Building a Framework early on in my blogging career and it completely changed the way I blogged. Abby teaches everything from how to start to how to start making a profit.
Food Blogger Pro – Food Blogger Pro is a terrific online course you can take that was created by the creators of Pinch of Yum. They have seen tremendous growth from their food blog and share all their knowledge with you to help you succeed as well.
JetPack – Jetpack offers so many features to keep your site safe and secure. With backups, site monitoring and spam protection.
Linqia – Linqia is a great way to start working with brands. You fill out your profile and the brands come to you!
Pitch Perfect Live – Pitch Perfect is a course I took hosted by successful blogger, Jenny Melrose. She will walk you step by step through how to pitch to brands and what to do once you’ve got them.
Share a Sale– Share a Sale is a great place to find a ton of affiliate programs that fit your niche.
Tailwind – Tailwind is a great scheduling tool to help with your Pinterest posting and Instagram sharing. It takes a lot of time and guesswork out of building your social media so you can spend your time doing other things.
WooComerce – The best way to sell your products for an online shopping experience!
WordPress – I have used WordPress from the second I created my blog and have not been let down once. They have a huge variety of themes that are easy to use so that you can be unique without being over-the-top!