My Imperfect Minimalism | Divya Toshniwal|

Minimalism- a concept that changed my life. It gave me more time, more energy, and more motivation for the things that truly mattered in my life. I am not one of those with unlimited access to money but in spite of that, I have been able to take 12 vacations in the past 3 years in spite of 2 of them being pandemic years. 

This happened because I could save myself from indulging in material possessions and that gave me more money, more energy, and more motivation to travel. 

Still, at the end of the day, people around me have been more alert than I myself have been for what I shop for. Statements like " How can you but this aren't you a minimalist?", " You don't wear all black /grey/neutral colors, how can you claim to be a minimalist? ", " Oh you buy so many books, minimalists only read e-books." " Your home isn't all clean and your tabletops don't have only plants, that isn't standard minimalism". You have so many colors in your closet, you are not a minimalist." And so on. 

Since the day I published my book on Minimalism even when they have not read the book they have been more critical towards every move I make. 

Thus today, I decided to define my Imperfect Minimalism.  

I am not the standard all aesthetician minimalist that you people see on youtube. I don't live in the states and I don't have all-white or neutral furniture.  I don't have plants as decor and I don't mind having a library of books. 

I am an Indian Married Woman. I have a variety of clothes in my cupboard. I have sarees, I have Kurtis , I have jeans, I have dresses. I have reds, I have pinks and I have my blacks and neutrals too. No, I can't fit myself in the category of a standard minimalist because I do live in a society that needs different types of clothes on different occasions. No, I can't sit in a pooja wearing jeans and I cannot go on bike trips in a saree. 

But I am a minimalist when it comes to the number of pieces I have in each category. I don't mind repeating my clothes and I don't need a closet full of clothes and that is my Imperfect Minimalism.  

I am an Indian married woman and I have a kitchen full of utensils because I host people and I need to keep things accordingly.  I can't fit into the standard definition of having a couple of glasses or cups and a couple of forks and spoons. I need to work in a full kitchen. With lots of plates and spoons and glasses and pans. I have a lot of stuff in my kitchen because Indian food preparations require a tonne of things to prepare meals. But my Imperfect minimalism is when I do not have 'single-use' appliances. I do not make impulse buys for kitchen gadgets. I don't need a chopper to chop vegetables for just two people and I don't need a lemon squeezer just because it holds the seeds.  I have only as much is essentially needed to live comfortably and not makes life difficult for me. 

I have been a messy person forever. I need all that I use in my visual circle and hence it sometimes becomes extremely tough for me to keep my tabletops clean. I forget about things when they are out of my sight and hence I don't make my home the standard aesthetic house that is expected of a minimalist.  I organize in my own way. I keep open baskets to keep my daily need stuff on my tabletops and that is what works for me . Hence, I don't have plants as decorative pieces on my tabletops. That is what gives me time for more important things in my life. That is my imperfect minimalism.

Minimalism is not a burden for me. It is not a category that I need to fit myself into. It is a style to live life. It is about the awareness of using my resources, saving my time and putting my energy into things that truly matter to me. I can read more, write more and travel more because minimalism saved my time, energy, and money. 

I don't want to settle down into how society wants me to and neither do I want to fit in the standard definition of minimalism according to them. I love my Imperfect Minimalism and I am proud to be an Imperfect Minimalist. 

My Imperfect Minimalism is :
  • Having enough clothes so I can do laundry only once a week
  • Having enough dishes so that I have to wash them once a day
  • Having physical books so that I do not harm my eyes by reading for long hours
  • Having my home organized in a style that is appropriate and time-saving for me
  • Having to spend money only on what my needs are not how society expects my home to be.
  • Buying things that make me happy and make my life easier
  • Spending my time with people who are worth spending time with
MInimalism is Beyond Decluttering. It is not a cult with some fixed rituals, it is a way of living and it can be as flexible as you want as long as you do not deviate from the basic principle of Being More With Less.

Get my book on Minimalism Here



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