I have become a minimalist.

Preparing for my Round the World trip has really changed all my habits. Ever since I made the decision to backpack around the world I don’t want to buy anything unless I need it and want to get rid of everything that I don’t need. I didn’t know a name for that existed.  Then I came across this article 18 Ways You Might Be a Minimalist on Step 1 Minimalist by Courtney Carver from Be More with Less and couldn’t stop laughing. I now know a name exists for my condition I am a MINIMALIST.

I copied the 18 ways with permission and below each way I put why it fits.

If you can’t stop giving stuff away and your dog is worried that he’s next, you might be a minimalist.

  • I don’t have a dog but I just can’t stop getting rid of stuff. Some has been donated, some has been sold in garage sales and some has been thrown away. Sadly I know I am still going to get rid of more stuff.

If you have an empty attic or storage shed, you might be a minimalist.

  • I live with my sister so don’t exactly have an attic or storage shed but for once I have a few empty drawers in my bed room.

If you are debt-free or paying off debt with gazelle intensity, you might be a minimalist.

  • I have already discussed this. I have a year to pay off my debt and save enough money for my Round the World trip. I am not playing around and am going to get this done!

If walking through Target or Wal-Mart makes you throw up in your mouth a little, you might be a minimalist.

  • Walking through Wal-Mart has always made me feel that way but now with Target in the news it also makes me feel that way.

If your children are mad at you because you canceled the cable, you might be a minimalist.

  • I have no children but my sister has cable. If I had my own place I know for sure I would have already cancelled it by now.

If a friend asks you to go shopping and you would rather go to the park, you might be a minimalist.

  • Just the other day a friend called me to go to the mall and I said no. I actually preferred to stay in my room doing nothing! That was a first because I know old Jaime would have gone.

If you don’t want your parents to stop by your yard sale because you are selling their stuff too, you might be a minimalist.

  • Me and my sister just recently made my parents get rid of a lot of stuff they no longer needed and sold it in a garage sale.  They also don’t like it when I go over because I always want to throw stuff away.

If you don’t have a junk drawer, you might be a minimalist.

  • I actually just recently got rid of my junk drawer and am very proud to not have one!

If you have more free time than ever before, you might be a minimalist.

  • This has been a problem of mine, but with school starting it will no longer be one.

If you have ever used a car share service, you might be a minimalist.

  • I actually have never used one but always try to car pool when going out with friends.

If you are curious about living with less than 100 things, you might be a minimalist.

  • I have actually never heard of this but am now VERY curious.

If clutter makes you cry, you might be a minimalist.

  • Clutter has always made me cry. I HATE CLUTTER.

If you follow less than 100 tweeps on twitter, or 100 friends on Facebook, you might be a minimalist.

  • On twitter I am actually very scared to go over 100. I am at 98 right now and don’t want to go over 100.

If you vote with your dollars, you might be a minimalist.

  • I have always done this. There are places I have not been to in years because of this.

If people who can fit all of their belongings in a backpack inspire you, you might be a minimalist.

  • I am very inspired by these people and hopefully I will be one soon.

If you follow the 1 in, 1 out rule, you might be a minimalist.

  • I just try not to bring anything in anymore, but when I do I will keep this in mind.

If you want to live a life with more meaning and less junk, you might be a minimalist.

  • That is how I want to live.

Last, but not least…

If you would rather spend a day with
Leo Babauta instead of Oprah Winfrey, you might be a minimalist.

  • I’ve actually never been a fan of Oprah and I have no clue who Leo is, but now that I do I would rather spend the day with him.

Before I continue let me get this out of the way “Hi, my name is Jaime and I am a minimalist”. I love the idea that I fit into this lifestyle because I think it is awesome. Planning for this huge adventure has really made me realize how much stuff I have bought in the past that I really didn’t need and how much stuff I have kept around that I don’t need. I have alway enjoyed throwing stuff away but I have never realized how liberating it is too have less stuff. The more I get rid of the more free I feel.

So doesn’t this make you want to be a minimalist if you are not? Or you can just answer Courtney’s question how many of these apply to you?

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  1. Jaime that is so cool! I know i spend a lot of money on useless shit sometimes but I really do consider myself a minimalist. I hate having things with me, I only want my phone in my pocket, I hate having my room busy, I hate to have a lot of things around that I don’t need. This is actually a great way to be even if you DIDN’T have a RTW trip planned 🙂 I like to be “lightweight” anywhere I go and for everything I do. If I don’t need it, I don’t want it. It’s just too bad for me right now I still live at home so I can’t take it as far as I’d like, hahaha!

  2. Jorge, you are right this is a great way to be even if I wasn’t planning a RTW trip. Now that I am seeing the bigger picture of having less is more. I love it. I seriously think as a country we are in a way brain washed to think we need everything when in reality we don’t.

    Courtney also has this story that puts the American culture into perspective.
    The Story of the Mexican Fisherman
    Let me know what you think…

  3. Jaime, This is a great post. I am so glad (and honored) that you expanded on my original idea! I will be checking in on you and your exciting journey. I imagine the next year will be just as revealing as your backpacking trip. Keep in touch!


  4. I’m not a minimalist, but I am certainly heading in the right direction. I come from a family of squirrelers (when we helped my grandparents move we found a closet brimming with the check butts from every check he had ever written!). I think I used to be a squirreler. When I moved to Sweden I brought more things with me than my boyf actually owned. But nowadays, I think I am getting better. I have become more ruthless at throwing things away. It’s disturbing to me when I go home to visit that I have SO much stuff (and I didn’t even remember it existed… that’s how much I don’t need). Every time I visit home I try to throw some more of it away. Baby steps…

    I enjoyed this post… it does seem like you’re embracing the minimalist lifestyle. I like the idea of 1 in, 1 out. It makes sense. I would love to be able to apply it though.

  5. QueenBrain12 says:

    I like it, I want it, I gotta have it! I live by this so trying to do the 1 in, 1 out rule would definately not work for me.

    You should organize people’s home or office for extra cash. I know you would do great.

    My parents were always broke when I was a kid so I didn’t have much and I hated that. I hated being the kid that never had anything new or cool. So now I splurge, why not?! Whether it’s a new Coach purse, a family vacation or a coke to get me through the day I won’t forbid myself.

    I’m glad you’re on your way to becoming a minimalist. You should look into if you get a tax break for that! It could fall in the lines of going “green” lol But it’s not for me!

    Much Love
    Brain 🙂

  6. @Courtney -I am glad you enjoyed my post & am very thankful you gave me permission to use it.
    @Verity – Being completely honest with you it is hard at first but the more you start using that mentality it becomes easier because you will see the bigger picture. You are doing the right thing by starting off small. I think that is how we all start off and then slowly go into the CRAZY mode I have gotten into.
    @QueenBrain12 – You should at least give the 1 in 1 out a try. I know you would be able to do that. About doing that as a side job you are right I would absolutely love it. Maybe once I am done with school in Dec I can do it on the side to earn more cash. I am also going to look into making it a tax break…lol after all minimalist are greener!!!

  7. HIIIII just wanted to leave u some love on here!! Dont be sad I read ur posts too! I am proud of what u are doing… you are really changing your whole life around all for a good reason. Im tellin you, your life is gonna change when you leave the US.. theres so much in the world than what we know. You have a lot of will power! But in the meantime… we have to party haha :]

  8. I am reading your blog and commenting! I am so impressed with you right now. I am like the total opposite of minimalist… maximum-ist? 🙂 I have a problem with collecting and saving things. I might take your post into consideration, though. I probably have way too much. Look forward to my gigantic yard sale!

  9. If your a true minimalist then what about that junk in your trunk? 😉

  10. @michelle – Its very hard to do all this but its all for something better and bigger so I am doing everything I can to make it happen & in the mean time we can party (but free…lol)!!!
    @jessica – YOu are impressed???? Were you not before this…lol jk!!! You can become a minimalist too just start small.
    @scott – OMG I READ THIS AT WORK AND COULDNT STOP LAUGHING. Funniest comment ever but for my defense its not my fault I got a big booty…LMAO!!!

  11. Stuff just weighs you down. Some things are nice to have and do make life easier, but I’d rather suffer and have better experiences in life. Being a minimalist feels really good. As I shed my belongings, with each item I sell, I begin to feel more free. Imagine how I’m going to feel when it’s all gone!?!

  12. I think I was already minimalistic but planning for my trip just encouraged it as I now had a reason to say I didn’t want to shop. It was so liberating.

  13. @jenny – Your right being a minimalist does feel good. You have a few months to get rid of everything. Its going to be so awesome. At 1st it is probably going to feel strange but later it will feel awesome
    @ayngleina – Yeah planning for a RTW really does turn anyone into a minimalist. It is very liberating.

  14. Wow. this just reminded me of all the stuff I want to get rid of.

    I’m an aspiring minimalist with a lot of work to do. I’m looking foreword to my liberation from all my stuff.

  15. I like how you failed to mention that the person you turned down (2x!) to go to the mall was none other than your significant other….ME!

    Great post, you’re really developing as my little blogger.

  16. This is the problem with centralized production. What happened to locally produced products? Petaluma used to be the chicken capital of the world, now it is just another housing track. The lesson here is DON”T PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET

  17. @Nick you should give it a try it feels amazing!!!
    @Wev LMFAO girl Im trying to keep everyone anonymous. Thats why i didnt use your name!
    @Guy Im not sure exactly what you are talking about…

  18. How funny! I am so not a minimalist, but I know I should be. My small duplex is overflowing with books and clothes. But I went to Walmart recently to grab a few things (I generally try to avoid it, but had to make a stop), and even I was disgusted at how much crap there was. So much of it was so useless. Lately whenever I’m tempted to buy something, I have to really stop and think about whether there is really any room for it! That’s funny about your Twitter followers, though. I used to be a minimalist on that, but I gave up and decided to follow anyone who I thought was cool or tweeted interesting things.
    Emily recently posted..Photo Essay- Perugia- Italy–City of Arches

    • Oh you should start getting rid of things it is really so liberating!!! You just feel so free and less tied down to what you own. Yes, WalMart I so know what you are talking about. So much of the stuff we buy are that is shoved down our throats is useless stuff. Oh & about twitter yeah I had to break it… So many cool people out there~

  19. Very cool post! I’m inspired by these minimalist observations (and admit to quite a few!)
    Sonya recently posted..Novotel’s Latest In Asia

  20. Yes, I want to be a minimalist too [not for sure if that’s because of me wanting to be want or just feeling clutter right now by everything]. But anyways best of luck on your journey (soon right?).

  21. Love this. We are minimalists. every single point. was a transition we made about 5 years ago. Moved out of a huge house, into an apartment we love. We don’t have CD’s, or DVD’s, we don’t have cable. Heck we don’t even have a coffee table. We do have art. LOL! This was a great post! I particularly enjoyed reading your perspective on each point.
    Montecristo Travels recently posted..The Story of Moby – The Traveling Dog’s BFF

    • Jaime Davila says:

      Yes it’s so nice to be one now… I am a SEMI one… cus I know I still buy a few things I don’t need like all the magnets I have bought on the road…lol. I want my lil souvenir collection.

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