Minimalist would say that less is more, that giving is getting and that when our possessions are dispensable, we are free. Is this a way to wellness? Can we, during this time of what feels like rationing, gain a deeper understanding of our true needs? The minimalist philosophy is about more than letting go of our extra’s. It’s about a cleaner and leaner lifestyle from what we eat, to how we care for ourselves and the value we assign to people, places and things. The hidden benefit is that if we have less to take care of , we have less to do and we have new found time for what we value.
The Blue Zones are geographical areas where people have lower rates of chronic diseases and longer lives, many reaching their 100th birthday. Researchers have looked for common healthy behaviours and found that a minimalist lifestyle seems to be central to well being. All positive lifestyle changes lead to placing higher value on purpose, self-care, relationships and moderation of food and drink. That’s the essence of a minimalist.
“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”Socrates
Blue Zone Healthy Thinking
- Move Naturally and Frequently (walking, gardening, biking, etc.)
- Find and Value Purpose (what makes your life worthwhile)
- Learn to Down Shift (use natural strategies to destress)
- 80% Rule (stop eating or drinking when you’re 80% full)
- Find where you Belong (strong sense of community)
- Family First (prioritize family and those you are close to)
Embracing Minimalism for Wellness
- Value the food you bring home, wash it and store it carefully
- Remember what you have instead of focusing on what you don’t have
- Try new combinations and recipes to vary your tastes
- Share your meals with good company, good music, good thoughts
- Move frequently through the day and allow your body to guide you
- Use the full potential of your power and endurance to do more
- Challenge yourself with new movements to find your potential
- Use your extra time for enjoyable activity
- Mental Health
- By decluttering our possessions, we also declutter our mind
- By choosing what we will keep, we become grateful for what we have
- By uncomplicating our obligations and responsibilities, we live with less stress
Learn more about where the Blue Zones are located and the findings that are the fountain of youth.
If you want to read more, here a great list of books for simpler living.