- File Size: 4748 KB
- Print Length: 45 pages
- Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
- Publication Date: November 2, 2014
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B006431ADS
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,033 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
Simplify Kindle Edition
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I have often said that the best memories of my life were when my kids were small and I was poor. We would drive to the beach, with our basket of peanut butter & jelly sandwiches, koolaid & cut fruits, spend the day on a remote spot where there were no tourist attractions, just us and the beach. I made a lean to from an old tarp to create shade where my youngest would nap for hours. At the end of the day, we visited I a public bath house, showered off the sand & I dressed them in PJ' s for the hour drive home.
In the years since, I have bought all of the things, or been gifted everything I used to think I wanted, needed or thought I was supposed to have. But the strangest transformation began almost immediately after acquiring all the "stuff" I began to stay constantly stressed over where to put things, surprised that I really didn't love most of it and guilty to have been blessed yet ungrateful. I couldn't understand why, what was wrong with me? Well, your book, along with a few others, smacked me in the head with the understanding: I was perfectly NORMAL! THE CONSUMER IN ME WAS THE CRAZY ONE! Some books go to the extreme, but your book helped me define my own level of minimalism. I have completely decorated my sister's home with my rejects, I have made gifts of beautiful jewelry I never wear to friends and family and I no longer have ANY clothes I don't love or drawers overstuffed with stuff. I plan to finish after the overindulgence of the holidays have passed, and bring exercise, meditation and real joy back into my life. Thanks for the nudge I the right direction!...
This book is extremely concise (less than a 100 pages), which I value in any blog post, article, or book on simplicity. Quality over quantity.
Which brings me to the next point, this book is on PRINCIPLES (as indicated by the title of the book), meaning it will teach you how to fish instead of just handing out fish. If you want someone to hold your hand, buy the Simple Living Guide (500 pages!) and she will direct step by step, dump your drawers out, separate into three piles kind of stuff. There are many blogs on declutting, and Miss Minimalist and Zen Habits will walk you through. There is no point in Joshua reiterating what countless others have covered in regards to clutter. He is simply here to introduce to you the simple life, offering principles that you'll want to keep for a lifetime. The benefits are immense.
Book starts out with his story. I like the approach, makes you feel welcome. His stories are insightful and entertaining throughout the book. First story goes: some neighbor tells him about her minimalist daughter while he's spending time in the garage cleaning, yet another weekend gone.
He boils things down to the top reasons why you should simplify your life. He points you to his blog if you need more reasons. I was delighted to see the bullet point about simplifying so your kids don't have to rummage through all your stuff one day! Other minimalists don't touch on this important subject. All the junk piling up in my mother's house --- I wonder how I will counter that monumental task if my dad passes or if some tragic accident happens to both of them. It's not a delightful topic to think about, but it makes it easier on everyone if you prepare and figure out what really matters in life before you pass, not just for your sake, but for the environment and for your children.
Josh takes you through the pros and cons of capitalism. You hear both sides. There are pros and cons to everything. Going green has cons like less-than-baby soft toilet paper or having to lug your empty water can around instead of drinking out of throw-aways. When people write books about their ideas, they often leave the cons out. I like his balanced approach.
He then takes you into budget making (critical for a life of simplicity). His plan is the simplest I've come across. He mentions (wisely) that you can't just put $400 for food, because it varies from month to month. He implements savings and charity donations into his budget, so the rest left is free to spend. He's on the money!
The book covers these topics: Find clutter magnet spots in your house. Opt out of junk mail. Turn hangers around when using a garment to get a clue as to what you actually use every month (brilliant idea!). How to deal with simplicity with kids. How to manage enjoyable gift exchanges (clever points here). Buy quality. Don't get addicted to anything. Give. Don't take short cuts. Love things without owning them, love nature. Speak with integrity. Manage time and your computer desktop. Benefits of less TV. (Basically, he reveals the right direction with innovative ideas to try immediately.)
He finishes the book off inviting you on this wonderful journey of less encumbrance with superfluous things...more time with people who matter. Gives you a lovely family, Christmas portrait on the last page.
I enjoy how Joshua doesn't push his religious beliefs. I am a Christian, but I still don't like to be preached to. I did enjoy all the great quotes throughout, especially the one by Spurgeon. My dad loves Charles Spurgeon!
If you can't tell, I thoroughly loved this book. I have read a great deal of books on minimalism, but nobody sums it up and packages this kind of life like Joshua does here. Definitely worth having in your Kindle library. I have reaped plenty from having less: mobility, time (to enjoy life), more savings, focus --> a satisfying career, stronger relationships, a greener lifestyle... The list goes on, and it will for you, too.
I wouldn't recommend this booklet, unless the concept is brand new to a reader and you want something to read within short amount of time.