Friday, December 9, 2016

Minimalist Fun

What do minimalists do for fun?  The answer is the same as for people who are debt-free, healthy, or still a child: Anything they want.

But if you think a life without piles of new purchases sounds like no life at all, I’ll remind you that only boring people are bored.  Here are some questions you can ask to alleviate the ennui:

1.       Have I gone for a walk today?  I don’t write much about exercise.  But if you are like 90% of people who don’t exercise, you are probably used to using my excuse: “I’m too tired or busy to work out.”  I want to challenge that notion: Chances are that you just don’t like activities that you perceive as exercise.  Instead of jumping on the treadmill or driving to the gym, start thinking of experiences you enjoy that get your heart pumping:

  • Trampoline parks
  • Water Park or Theme Park (think about all the walking!)
  • Volleyball, basketball, tennis…there’s no sport that doesn’t introduce you to muscles you don’t use on the sofa.
  • Take a hike…or a walk, or a jog.  Even a walking tour is technically exercise.  So are walking through a museum, a park, the zoo, or believe it or not, the mall.
  • When’s the last time I read a book?  No, I don’t just mean a fiction book, though I love those.  This is a great time to do some extra studying and get your grades up.  Done with school but not crazy about fiction?  Pick up a “How To” manual, something For Dummies, or Winston Churchill’s autobiography.

3.       What new skill would I like to learn?  Rather than going out and buying materials that might get you interested in something new, focus on trying out new things on someone else’s turf.  Take an art/wine pairing class, a racquetball lesson, or a tour of a microbrewery.  You might find that whatever you try isn’t for you, but it’s just one of hundreds of experiences you can dip your toe into without buying the whole pool.

4.       Can you hear me now?  When is the last time you talked to your parents, your siblings, or even your friends from college?  Try reconnecting with someone you haven’t seen or talked to in a long time.  You could even ask your renewed acquaintance for ideas of new hobbies to try.

5.       How many things can I think of that I’m grateful for?  I know it’s an oldie, but it’s still a goody.  Chances are you’ve made a list in the past, but maybe it’s different now that you have some space in your home and budget.

Minimalism, simplicity, being debt-free, and just plain living your life is about finding the people and activities that matter to you and making - not finding - time to enjoy them.

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