Having a minimalist home has had lasting benefits in our family. It is easily the best thing we’ve done for our family. The only thing I wish I had done differently with minimalism would be to start sooner.
I’ve identified ten ways that having a minimalist home has improved our every-day lives. Some of these benefits are more external in nature – ways that our days run smoother. The rest are more internal – ways that we feel better from the inside out.
External Benefits of a Minimalist Home
- Easier to pick up – With fewer possessions, it’s obvious that cleanup will be faster. We’ve certainly found that to be true. It’s also less exhausting because everything has a designated home, so we don’t have to make decisions on where to put things. They’ve already been made for us.
- Kids play more – This has been a wonderful change. My kids are young, 3 and 1, and spend most of their time following me around. That’s totally developmentally normal, and while it drives me crazy some days, I generally try to involve them in whatever I’m doing. However, since we paired down their toys (you can read more about that here https://mothersimply.com/toy-minimalism-how-to-simplify-and-organize-toys-for-your-family/) their independent play has taken off. They play better together and for longer periods of time than they did previously.
- Save money – I don’t have a firm number on how much we’ve saved from minimalism, but I know that we’ve saved money. We’ve always been careful with large purchases, but we no longer buy little things on a whim. Most of the time, we just buy food and other consumables.
- Better for the environment – Because we buy fewer things, minimalism has a positive impact on the environment. Shipping goods, whether to your home or the store, takes its toll on the environment. All the packaging that new stuff usually comes in also takes its toll. When we do make a purchase, I always try to find it used first. And because I have more time, I have made it a priority to purchase fewer pre-packaged snacks, further reducing our waste and impact on the environment.
- Spend less time searching for things – When your floors and surfaces are cleared of clutter, you don’t have to pick up everything you own to find your car keys or your 3-year-old’s stuffed animal. Even if we haven’t put things away, there’s more open space to find them in.
Internal Benefits of a Minimalist Home
- More time for what we love – With less time cleaning up, we have more time for the things that are really important to us. That means we have more high quality, low-stress family time.
- Less guilt – For me, this has been huge. I spent years feeling guilty about not being able to keep my house clean. When I started practicing minimalism, I discovered that there was nothing wrong with me. I was just trying to manage more stuff than I could handle. Though I’m still not an exemplary housekeeper, the weight of guilt has been lifted from my shoulders. I no longer dread having someone see the inside of my house.
- Confidence – I have been amazed at how much more confident I have become. When my home is under control, I feel like my life is under control. Like I’m responsible. I didn’t realize how much of my self-esteem was riding on my ability to clean my house until I got a handle on my house. With a clean house, I feel like I can do anything I set my mind to.
- Happier marriage – The clutter in our house was a strain on our marriage. Not because my husband was at all upset by it, but because I felt so guilty about it. He tidies up a room in 15 minutes that I’d been working on (unsuccessfully) all day. I felt guilty and somehow like I wasn’t worthy of him, simply because I wasn’t good at cleaning. Lessening my guilt and increasing my confidence has greatly improved our marriage. I would also imagine that it’s more pleasant to come home to a tidier house and a happier wife at the end of the day.
- More of the spirit in our home – Isaiah 32:18 says, “And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.” I see this as a promise from God, but also an admonition. After all, who will make our dwellings peaceable, quiet resting places if not us? I’ve come to see that as my responsibility. Minimalism has made the biggest difference out of anything I’ve done. Thanks to minimalism, we have peace in our home. We have the spirit of God to teach us and guide us through our days.
Henry B. Eyering, a leader of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints said, “You will find some of your greatest joys in your efforts to make your home a place of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and a place that is permeated with love, the pure love of Christ.” That has been true in our home! In practicing minimalism, I have gained much more than I have discarded.
You can do it too!
Minimalism is just waiting for you to take the first step. The benefits are endless, and it’s a lifestyle that will find its way into all corners of your life. I would love to help you get started!
Type your email address below to get a 30-day decluttering starters guide. It’ll take you less than 5 minutes a day. Go to the area indicated by that day and find one thing to get rid of. Just one! But if you’re like me, you won’t be able to stop there. Give it a try and see how it impacts your family!