How to live more minimally

Less clutter around the house means much less stress. Start decluttering and see for yourself.

Editorial Team

By Editorial Team

minimal living space, wooden floor, grey couch, wooden shelving unit with very little decor and a small table for two with a muted painting above and a floor lamp next to it

Today we seem to live in a consumerist society in which having more stuff is viewed as a positive thing. However, a trend towards minimal living has started to gain traction and grow in popularity.

The premise of minimal living is all about decluttering your life and creating more for yourself by using less. Instead of focusing on possessions and having more things, the goal is to live a simpler, healthier life by eliminating things that aren’t necessary.

Why a minimalist apartment could be for you

  • Coming home to a visually open and calm space
  • Be more with less by not fretting over frivolous details
  • A few carefully curated pieces over regular purchases of new knick-knacks will benefit your budget
  • An easier cleaning process and less moving when relocating

The benefits of minimal living

The thought of decluttering might sound like a grand idea until you get to the moment where you actually have to do it. You then find it easier to come up with all sorts of reasons not to get rid of all that stuff.

young woman sitting comfortably on an armchair reading a book

There are a lot of benefits to starting a more minimal lifestyle, and here are just a few that might encourage you to start changing your ways. Once you get these rolling, you’ll start seeing the upsides right away.

Reduced stress

When you have fewer possessions, you’ll experience far less stress. You won’t have to deal with a cluttered home or wake up early on the weekends to clean, which is something most people don’t enjoy doing. There are even certain calming colors and decorative elements that you can incorporate into your home that will help you feel more collected.

Furthermore, when you learn to live minimally, you won’t be spending as much money on unnecessary things. Meaning, perhaps you won’t have to be stuck in a job you despise just to maintain your shopping habits.

Improved relationships

Since living minimally means that you place far less importance on possessions, it eliminates the need to compete with or impress other people.

Therefore, you can focus on your relationships and actually connect rather than just trying to please everyone around you.

You’ll finally be able to be yourself, which will do wonders for your relationships.

Truly awesome relationships are built on great memories and wonderful experiences – not on material possessions.

Greater freedom

You only truly realize how many items you own when you have to pack up and move. It’s usually a shock for people when they start decluttering and then see everything piled together.

So eliminating needless items is a great way to regain your freedom and feel liberated.

Once you do, you’ll find that you are more willing to travel and move as you no longer are tied down by useless clutter. Moving becomes far easier when you don’t have to transport a large truck of bulky furniture from one city (or country) to another.

That’s why renting a furnished apartment is a great option. You’ll be much more mobile, and independent with freedom from a growing stock of material possessions.

Above all, companies specializing in equipped rentals, like Blueground, provide all the essentials you need to start fresh. Beyond just the basics, your Blueground space comes completely move-in ready.

minimal apartment with three large windows letting natural light in, green accent wall behind the grey couch and a small marble coffee table

The interior design team meticulously styles the spaces and ensures they are equipped with so much more than just the necessary amenities. Through the Blueground Guest App (which is available immediately after the booking), you can schedule cleanings to help keep your place in top shape.

In addition, the app allows you to request maintenance, speak with guest support, and browse neighborhood advice.

When a home is already decorated in a particular style, you might find yourself resisting the urge to clutter it up with older knick-knacks.

Consider simplifying your packing, moving, and rental processes by just starting fresh with a furnished apartment. An asset-light lifestyle means that you can relocate with just a suitcase of clothes, and spend your first weeks in a new apartment enjoying yourself rather than fretting over furnishings.

Just show up, and start living. Bulky furniture items are not required.

How to start living a more minimalist lifestyle

Like with any major lifestyle change, you have to take baby steps for it to really work. You might be feeling inspired right now in the moment and want to go all out.

Don’t chuck everything you own away!

That is a recipe for disaster. The secret is to start small and work your way up.

Quality over quantity

Instead of filling up your home right away with everything under the sun, focus on quality.

In other words, take it slow and pick items that you really love, even if it takes you time to find those things. Durable pieces with timeless designs are your best bets. These items you can eventually be dressed up or down based on your next home.

small minimal bedroom with a green accent wall behind the wooden frame bed, small bedside table with a warm lamp

For your minimalist bedroom, focus on a sturdy bed frame, nightstands, and a practical storage solution that keeps clothing hidden away.

Be mindful of your purchases. Every item in your bedroom should serve a purpose. Many minimalist experts, like Fumio Sasaki, Marie Kondo, and Paige Geffen, choose simple patterns for textiles over busy motifs.

Although that is completely a personal preference.

If everything else in the room is super simple, it can be fun to have a bold print pattern on the bed.

Decorate with things you love

Don’t fill your house up with decorative items without really considering whether or not they bring you joy.

Your home should be a cozy, warm place that makes you feel amazing. If something doesn’t do that for you, then get rid of it. It’ll make dusting much easier too.

Learn that purging is a good thing

A lot of people have the habit of keeping things they no longer really want.

Or just in case that item might come in handy sometime in the future. More often than not, this time never arrives.

Instead, their home is full of clutter, which just causes a mess, which of course leads to stress. You have to adjust to the idea that purging useless items is a good thing. Learn the art of decluttering! It’s life-changing.

Always consider whether something serves a purpose.

If you haven’t used that awkwardly-shaped ice cube tray or that serving dish from last year’s holiday gift exchange, it doesn’t belong in your minimalist kitchen.

Decluttering tips

Decluttering is an essential part of your journey to embrace minimalism, but it’s not easy to do. Here are a few tips to help:

Make sure everything has a place

Clutter is often the result of a lack of dedicated storage, which is a problem you can easily solve. Install a few hooks for coats and bags, get cubbies or shelves for shoes, and add baskets for mail and other papers.

When everything has a place, you’ll find life is far less complicated and stressful.

Ensure everyone knows to put everything in its place

To keep clutter at bay, the first step is to make sure that everything has a specific place. The next step is to make sure that everyone in the household is putting the things back in their rightful place.

So, encourage your partner to put things away, and make sure that you do so as well.

As a budding new minimalist, you can only get the full extent of your streamlined home if everyone is on board with the organization.

minimal open closet with hanged shirts and lots of organization boxes

If you have kids, encourage them to get into the habit of putting items away. They won’t learn overnight, so you’ll need to be patient and definitely lead by example.

Get rid of one item every day

If you find it too difficult to throw things away, don’t panic. Start slowly and resolve to get rid of one item every day. Before you know it, you’ll be living a far less cluttered life.

Apply the five-box method

The five-box method involves getting five boxes: one for items that need to be thrown away, one for items to give away, one for items you can sell, one for items you wish to keep, and one for items that need to be relocated.

Next, pick an area – it doesn’t have to be a full room, it can just be a closet – and start sorting each and every item into the appropriate box. When considering your possessions, try to be as objective as possible. If you haven’t used something for six months, it’s likely you don’t really need it, so either donate it or throw it away.

Slowly and steadily, work your way through, decluttering the entire house. It might take a while, but you’ll learn to enjoy minimal living in no time!

Editorial Team

Editorial Team

The Blueground editorial team covers the best things to see, do, and experience in our cities around the world.