COVID-19 Editor's Column Self

Minimalism: less is more

By Fiona Bugler • 10th April 2020

Less is more is not a new thing, but in a time of pandemic it feels it’s right to embrace minimalism and many people are waking up to the realisation that to be happy we need less.

In our noisy, consumerist world based on instant gratification, it’s become apparent to many that to really feel satisfied and gratified a still, quiet mind, and less clutter is a route to happiness. It’s time to talk minimalism.

And here we are, in lockdown, seeing this message and understanding it loud and clear. Eighteen months ago I created a mood-board and on it were the words ‘Less Is More’. I wasn’t even sure why I’d put it on there. A year on and I’d had my house renovated and at Xmas, I spent days chucking things out and at the same time watching ‘minimalist’ stories on NetFlix and YouTube.

Minimalist movement

The popularity of Marie Kondo’s book and the subsequent TV programme on Netflix shows there’s a mood for less. Her magical art of tidying involves you saying goodbye and appreciating the things you’ve had in your life, mindfully letting go. Personally, I found this bit a little hard work, saying thank you to jumpers and trousers wore off for me and I just threw them in the bin bags! However, I may revisit her approach, as I have started to accumulate ‘stuff’ again, clutter, things I don’t need. Her approach is systematic and is designed to be a one-off clear out, where you re-set your mind and your life so that you don’t need to do it again.

Minimalist workplace

I’ve also found myself drawn to books on the subject with a more practical application to my work and the workplace and wellbeing in general. I’ve only just started reading Essentialism, but it’s resonating loud and clear. I’ve written about it before on here. ‘Less is better’: it’s about learning to say no to those meetings, and opportunities that are really just a distraction. It’s learning to take control of your time and focussing on what you really want to contribute to the world.

In his book, 24 Assets, Daniel Priestly tells us to, “Pick up a style and run deep with it…..become world-class at implementation.” I’ve put this on a sticky and saved it on my laptop.

Keep it simple

And of course, there are lots of books, and films and ‘experts’ on minimalism, so don’t get bogged down in trying to be the perfect minimalist. The good thing is that now, we really do have an opportunity to live a minimalist life. For ages, I thought I needed to cut out shop-bought coffees and now I just have, no issue, as I can’t buy them. I’ve also found a new focus with work: I run and I write, and from there I’m creating my wellbeing business.

Fiona Bugler

Fiona is the creator of all things editorial, she’s a journalist with a life-long passion for health, fitness and wellbeing. For more than a decade she worked with business leaders and large groups as a personal trainer and running coach and this background informs the content she creates.

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