Where ever you go there you are. People dream of living in the countryside, a nice house or even a fancy high-rise apartment. People dream of having a better job or certain items in their life, and they think that these things will bring them peace, contentment, joy and happiness. And they will, for a time. But no matter where you are or where you want to be, you will always be who you are. That will not change.
Have you heard the saying minimalist or minimalism? The word minimalism described an art movement in the 1960s regarding artists like Donald Judd, Agnes Martin or Carl Andre. The interesting thing is many of the artists didn’t relish being called minimalist artists or identify it as a movement at all. The idea around their artistic aesthetic was a reduction of the abstract movement favouring the literal.
The word minimalism has been construed from its original form into an aesthetic that is desired in consumer culture. Mainly in high-end products away from the middle to low-income households. This is because the minimalist lifestyle is a preference to own less, rather than the economic struggles of lower wealth classes. Minimalism has become a status symbol, represented mainly by White European or Asian ethnicities.
When it comes to reading the written word, the best type of reading that you can do is in the long format of a book. I’m here to tell you how it can change your life for the better. Aside from the normal benefits that we already know about like improved brain connectivity, reduced stress and prevention of cognitive decline. Reading also aids in sleep along with increases your vocabulary and empathy. But we already knew that let’s talk about how reading can really benefits your life and why you should read.
Maybe you have heard of these words going around. Needless consumption, endless consumption, responsible consumption, zero waste, eco friendly, sustainability, green, recycled, materialistic lifestyle or minimalism. In short, these are the current marketing buzzwords targeting environmental impacts. Or words that make us feel good when a company says their products are sustainable, recycled or whatever bull-shit they are using to make you buy their products.
Needless consumption or a consumer’s morels are constructed on not valuing a person on 1. How they care. 2. Their creativity. 3. Or the strength of their community. Instead, we value ourselves on how many commodities we have. This also pushes us away from ethical questions on how those commodities are made or the well being they have on communities. The number one priority of a company is to make more profit.
Recently I was talking to my wife about what would happen if our home burnt down. And reflecting on this. The only thing that I would be worried about is losing all my hard drives filled with photographs of our memories. Everything else I couldn’t care about. Like if our home burnt down, I wouldn’t be sad or angry, I’d just be annoyed that I needed to call the insurance company and do all that paperwork. I literally have no attachments to the thing in our home. And my wife said, “I wouldn’t call that a flex, like that’s sad.” But in my mind it isn’t and here is why.
You want to get good at something my advice is to start small and slog away at it every day even when you don’t feel like it. Make sure that starting isn’t hard, make it as easy as possible. Little effort with the shortest lifespan is how I get good at anything.
Photography, the slog is picking up the camera and taking it where ever I go. Writing, simple every time I open up the computer I also open up a notepad or writing app. Working out, simple have weights next to my clothes, and only do a few reps and the weights aren’t that heavy. The trick with all is to do it every day thou. Consistency, I’m a morning person I do all my good habits in the morning. A few weights, a few words a simple act of picking up the camera. It’s the little habits that make us who we are. A small kind act, asking someone we love how they are. Drinking water in the morning. Going to be at 10 pm. Walking up the stairs instead of the elevator. Smiling at strangers. Reading a book in the evening. Opening a door for someone. Picking that rubbish you see on the floor. Cleaning the dishes while cooking. It’s the small things that make us who we are. It’s what we normally do on an average day that becomes our life.
Compassion is accepting, accepting that someone is not ready, because they are dealing with something, and they are not willing to learn or hear. Wisdom can only be transferred when the student is ready to listen. Compassion is seeing the potential and being willing to wait for them.
The dictionary definition for Compassion is a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate that suffering. I feel that compassion is a bit more than that. A willing to wait, to see through someone else eyes. And to accept where someone is in life be it mentally or emotionally.
I see there is a fundamental flow with our current society and it is changing for the better. There are so many of us who focus on productivity and growth and work and building a business or career. But very few of us focus on our wellbeing or the wellbeing of others around us. I have been in so many meetings that aren’t volunteer about work structure, processes and responsibilities, goals, output etc. I have yet seen emotions or feelings or mental health be the focus. It’s always on the fringes or the outskirts, always volunteer or self-driven. This makes me sad, that we live in a business world about profit but not wellbeing.
Do you really want to devote yourself and all your energy towards something or someone that just takes and takes and takes? That is not a healthy relationship. Be careful about a relationship we think you want.
We are led to believe that to be successful this day in age, you need to be comfortable in front of a camera, and that you need to have an opinion on everything. And that you need to build a community. And that you also need to be consistent, constantly making new content. But consistency leaves no space for evolution. There is so much pressure in the modern world of social media to press upload. Is this good for mental health?
Be careful of wearing your symbols and ideology. Ideal worship of the ego and representing it through the cloth to show who you are and what you are is a form of insecurity. It might be a false deity or use, we are not the cloth we wear. So I ask you why are you wearing or showcasing your beliefs or group, why do you feel you need to distinguish yourself from others?
I’m not talking about discrimination or stopping someone from wearing something that relates to their beliefs. Like a wedding ring, green stone, a cross, prey beads or a hijab. I’m talking about a full getup that tells people you love a car brand, that you are a new-age hippy, a minimalist or that you are a serious businesswoman that only wears pants. I’m talking about displaying your identity so no one will confuse your beliefs or morals. Cloth that helps people stereotype you from just what you are wearing.