17 Simple Tips for Becoming a Minimalist for Beginners

What are simple tips for becoming a minimalist?

Do you dream of living a life where: 

  • Your home is free of clutter;
  • The paper pile in the corner of your bedroom is no more;
  • You can find what you’re looking for with the snap of a finger;
  • There’s room in your calendar for other activities or self-care;
  • Cleaning is so much easier. 

All of this can be accomplished by becoming a minimalist! 

Becoming a minimalist means finding a way to be happy with less.

But I’d be lying to you if I said becoming a minimalist was easy. 

The path to minimalism is easier said than done, especially when the habits you currently have are so deeply ingrained in your way of life. 

But this blog post is here as your guide. 

I am sharing 17 tips for becoming a minimalist, perfect for any beginner!

With these tips for becoming a minimalist for beginners, you’ll be living a minimalist lifestyle in no time.

What’s Covered In This Blog Post

  • The five elements of minimalist living. 
  • The benefits of living as a minimalist today. 
  • Setting yourself up for success. (Hello, mindset shifts!) 
  • How to Become a Minimalist – 17 tips

P.S. If you’re hoping to start decreasing the things in your life, you’re well on your way to becoming a minimalist already! Congratulate yourself on getting this far!

tips on becoming a minimalist

    

What is Minimalism?

In a nutshell, minimalism means living with only the things you absolutely need.

But conceptually, minimalism means different things to different people.

That means it’s up to you to come up with what minimalism means for you and your family.  

Whether that includes reducing the number of possessions, you need to be happy or producing less waste when living your daily life, figuring out how you’ll live your minimalist lifestyle is the first step to becoming a minimalist.

If you’re wondering how you can apply minimalism to your life, consider these examples:

1) Owning fewer possessions.

One of the most popular and transformative applications of minimalism is decluttering your possessions. 

The goal is to keep only the items that truly serve a purpose or bring you joy on a daily basis. (Sounds a little bit like the famous Marie Kondo method, doesn’t it?) 

This process isn’t just about getting rid of things—it’s about making space for what truly matters.

By owning fewer possessions, you: 

  • Remove the physical and mental distractions that come with owning too much stuff.
  • Reduce decision-making fatigue when doing things like getting dressed or cooking dinner. 
  • Feel better in your home because it’s not cluttered with unnecessary items. 

For me, the shift happened when I realized I was spending more time organizing my possessions than enjoying them. 

Letting go of the unnecessary has given me the freedom to live more fully and intentionally.

2) Less clutter.

Since you will be ridding yourself of all unessential things, you can kiss excess clutter goodbye.

(And say hello to a cleaner space!)

In addition to the fact that your home will be cleaner and more organized, you’ll probably find that your mind is clearer without all that clutter, too.

But this doesn’t just apply to your physical environment. 

It can also apply to things like: 

  • Your calendar
  • To-do list
  • Digital devices
  • And more!
tips on becoming a minimalist

3) Living intentionally.

Without the distraction that comes from clutter, a minimalist lifestyle allows you to live more intentionally.

This shift is more than just physical decluttering; it’s about creating a mindset that prioritizes purpose and meaning in every aspect of your life.

This lifestyle forces you to focus on the things that matter most and makes you eliminate all the other things in your life that aren’t important.

4) Freedom from living comparatively to others.

When your life is focused on the things around you, you often find yourself comparing your life to the lives of others.

Social media, advertisements, and even casual conversations can trigger this comparison, making you feel like you need more to keep up or be happy. 

This constant comparison can lead to feelings of inadequacy and dissatisfaction.

But a minimalist lifestyle allows you to take your focus off possessions and onto less tangible things, like your relationships and family bonds, instead. 

5) Spending less.

If you’re looking for a budget-friendly lifestyle, you won’t find a better option than minimalism.

Since you’ll only be using things that are essential, you won’t need to worry about overspending or going into debt to purchase the things you need.

You can also look forward to: 

  • Reduced impulse buying;
  • Focus on quality over quantity;
  • Simplified budgeting;
  • Debt reduction;
  • Sustainable living.

Additional Benefits Of Minimalism In Our World

If the section above didn’t convince you of the benefits of living a minimalist lifestyle, maybe some of these other benefits will be more compelling!

Positive Impact on Future Generations

As parents, we want to do the very best for our children. 

Part of that is instilling good habits that will set them up for success in the future. 

Well, what could be more beneficial than teaching them that: 

  • Less is often more.
  • There are more important things to spend money on than material possessions.
  • That happiness and personal growth deserve more space in their life. 
  • Mindfulness will keep them grounded in the present moment. 

Embracing minimalism sets a positive example for future generations. 

Resilience In Crisis

When we teach our children to live with less, we’re also teaching them to be adaptable and resourceful. 

In a world that’s constantly changing, these skills are invaluable. 

They learn to focus on what they truly need and let go of what they don’t, making it easier to navigate tough times with grace and confidence.

Environmental Sustainability

Minimalism also encourages mindful consumption and reduces waste. 

By purchasing fewer, higher-quality items that last longer, we decrease the demand for mass production and lower our environmental footprint. 

This leads to reduced waste in landfills, less pollution, and a more sustainable use of natural resources. 

Minimalism promotes a culture of reusability, recycling, and eco-friendly choices, contributing to a healthier planet.

Setting Yourself Up For Success as A Beginner Minimalist

If you’re anything like me, you might be ready to jump in with both feet! 

But, as much as I love your enthusiasm, I want you to hit pause for a moment! 

Because living a minimalist lifestyle is not for the faint of heart. 

There are a lot of mindset shifts and existing habits that need to be broken to set you up for the best success with this new lifestyle. 

These simple ideas are easy ways to become a minimalist when you’re a beginner.

minimalism for beginners

Figure Out ‘Why’ You Want To Be A Minimalist

Before you start living as a minimalist, it’s a good idea to think about why you want to live that type of lifestyle in the first place.

Living a minimalist lifestyle can be difficult at times, so knowing exactly why you want to change your lifestyle can help when the going gets tough.

There are a variety of reasons someone may consider adopting a minimalist lifestyle, including:

  • Living more frugally
  • Getting out of debt
  • Keeping a cleaner, more organized home
  • Finding more time to enjoy with friends and family
  • Living a simpler, more peaceful life
  • Enjoying more experiences instead of accumulating more things
  • Reducing your waste and decreasing your carbon footprint

No matter what reason you choose to pursue a life of minimalism, make sure you know exactly why you’re choosing the path before you get started.

Then, put your ‘why’ somewhere that you can see it often. 

Doing this step will help you remember your ‘why’ when the going gets tough, and trust me, it will! 

Understanding your “why” will keep you motivated and focused throughout your journey.

Define What Minimalism Looks Like For You And Your Family

Minimalism isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. 

Take some time to define what minimalism means to you personally. 

That way, you won’t get confused when your BFF is sharing her tips or when your kids are asking a million questions about what they need to donate vs. what they can keep. 

Having a clear vision of your minimalist lifestyle will help you stay true to your goals.

Change Your Mindset

Adopting a minimalist lifestyle requires a significant shift in mindset. 

You’ll need to move away from the idea that more is better and embrace the concept of less is more. 

This means valuing quality over quantity, experiences over possessions, and simplicity over excess. 

Be patient with yourself as you make these mental adjustments.

It can even help to have some affirmations you can say to yourself to start rewiring your thought patterns. 

Here are some good ones you can try out! 

  1. “I choose simplicity and clarity in my life.”
  2. “I am content with what I have and appreciate the abundance around me.”
  3. “Less clutter equals more peace.”
  4. “I prioritize experiences and relationships over material possessions.”
  5. “I am mindful of what I bring into my life.”
  6. “I release what no longer serves me and make space for what truly matters.”
  7. “I am in control of my consumption and make intentional choices.”
  8. “I find joy in simplicity and tranquility in a minimalist lifestyle.”
  9. “My worth is not defined by my possessions.”
  10. “I create a peaceful environment that nurtures my well-being.”
  11. “I value quality over quantity in all areas of my life.”
  12. “I embrace minimalism as a path to freedom and fulfillment.”
  13. “I am grateful for the essentials that support my life.”
  14. “I live with intention, focusing on what brings me joy and purpose.”
  15. “I let go of the excess and trust that I have enough.”

Change Your Habits

To truly succeed in your minimalist journey, you’ll need to change some ingrained habits. 

This might mean adopting new shopping habits, like avoiding impulse buys or sticking to a strict budget. 

It could also involve decluttering regularly and being mindful of what you bring into your home. 

Consistency is key, so create routines that support your minimalist goals.

Start Small

It’s tempting to overhaul your entire life overnight, but lasting change happens gradually. 

Start small by tackling one area at a time—like a single drawer, closet, or room. 

Celebrate these small victories and use them as motivation to keep going. 

Remember, minimalism is a journey, not a destination! 

How To Get Started With Minimalist Living

Start by Decluttering

Since the basis of living a minimalist lifestyle is to reduce the number of possessions you have to only the items you absolutely need, it’s a good idea to start by decluttering your home.

This means removing all the extra possessions that aren’t essential to your family.

While decluttering your home is an important first step on your way to living a minimalist lifestyle, it doesn’t have to happen all at once.

Decluttering your home is a big process, which means it will probably take you a while to remove all that extra clutter from your house.

Taking your time to work through the decluttering process will ensure you’re able to sort through all your possessions to figure out what your family needs and what you don’t.

The first step to decluttering your home is to figure out how you’ll sort through all the stuff in your house.

Typically, you will sort your things into four different bins or piles:

1) Keep

Everything you plan to keep in your home will go in this spot, so make sure it’s something that you can’t live without to ensure you stay on your path toward minimalism.

One popular method to help you decide what you should keep is to focus on possessions that only “spark joy.”

It’s Marie Kondo’s method that is detailed in her book Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.

2) Donate

Place everything that you don’t plan on keeping, but is still in good, usable condition in this pile.

After sorting through the items in your home, you can figure out where to donate your unwanted things.

3) Recycle

Anything that can be recycled should go into this pile, including paper, plastic, and glass items.

4) Trash

All other things that you can’t donate or recycle and will be thrown away will go in the trash pile.

You can use bins, baskets, or cardboard boxes to help you sort through the things in your home. As you declutter, you’ll use the bins to help you keep track of where everything will go when you’re finished cleaning out each room.

After deciding what you’ll do with the things you plan on removing from your home, you can get started.

Work on one room of your home at a time to keep from getting overwhelmed.

how to become a minimalist

Once you’ve picked a room to declutter, you can follow this process:

  1. Remove everything from the room
  2. Go through the items one by one and decide which box the item will go in
  3. Remove the boxes labeled donate, recycle, and trash from your home
  4. Take your recyclables to the recycling center and set the trash out on the curb
  5. Donate the remaining items to your favorite charity
  6. After that, take the time to put the items you plan to keep back in the room they belong

Continue working your way through each room until you have decluttered every space in your home.

Other areas you’ll likely want to declutter are your wallet or purse, your computer, and your email inbox.

Even looking at ways you can declutter your calendar or to-do list can bring you some much-needed peace!

living minimally tips

Take A Look At Your Wardrobe

Many people consider minimalism to be reducing the number of things around you, but they don’t take a good look in their closets!

Clothing can cause just as much clutter and distraction as any other stuff lying around your house.

That’s why it’s important to apply the concept of minimalism to your clothing, in addition to other areas of your life.

Creating a capsule wardrobe is a great way to reduce the amount of clothing you have at home while still feeling stylish.

A capsule closet features a handful of classic pieces that are interchangeable with each other. This allows you to create a variety of outfits without the need for tons of different clothes.

Related: Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to build a minimalist capsule wardrobe.

Don’t Forget Your Groceries

The amount of food that gets wasted by an average household each week is astounding.

That’s why it’s important to take inventory of the amount of food you purchase for your family when you’re starting your minimalist lifestyle.

If you find yourself throwing away food every week, it’s probably time to start thinking about a new approach to grocery shopping.

Grocery shopping as a minimalist means only buying the food your family needs and avoiding the purchase of food items that are excessive or frivolous.

living with less stuff and decluttering

Choose Experiences Over Possessions

Just because you have decided to live a minimalist lifestyle doesn’t mean you can’t have fun!

In fact, reducing the amount of stuff you have in your life will make room for more time and money to enjoy fun experiences.

Instead of adding more things to your life, think about ways you can enrich your life with an experience. From learning a new skill to going on a trip, using experiences as a way to enjoy yourself is just another benefit of a minimalist lifestyle.

You can use a tool like Skillshare to easily learn new skills online.

The topics are endless and include music, photography, film & video, interior design, productivity, and business.

There are free courses. There are also premium courses available at a cost. However, you can sign up here and get the first 2 months of Skillshare Premium for FREE.

Downsize Your Living Arrangements

After decluttering your space and adopting a minimalist lifestyle, you may notice that your current living arrangements aren’t ideal.

Or maybe you need a push to really cut back on the number of things you have in your home.

Downsizing is a great option for a minimalist lifestyle because it makes you take a hard look at everything you have.

When space is limited, you’re forced to take inventory of everything that is truly essential in your life and remove all the stuff that you don’t really need.

Related: Here’s an article with a list of things minimalists don’t own.

17 Minimalist Living Tips For Ongoing Success

Becoming a minimalist is just the first step in living a minimalist lifestyle.

After you take that step, you need to continue taking measures to keep living minimally throughout your life.

With these easy tips, you can maintain your minimalist lifestyle with ease.

1) Pick a number.

If you’re having a hard time letting go of things in your house, start by picking a number of items you’ll keep in each room.

In your closet, for example, pick a number of pants, shirts, and shoes you’ll keep, then get rid of everything else.

This will force you to think critically about every single item, ensuring you pick the things you absolutely need and love to stay in each space.

2) Get rid of extra hangers.

After you have decluttered your closet, get rid of all the extra hangers. That way, you won’t have a place to hang anything new!

This will remind you that you shouldn’t make frivolous purchases.

It will also help you remember to only add something new when you are replacing something old.

steps to becoming a minimalist

3) Go paperless.

Think about how much paper clutter you have to deal with on a daily basis.

From tossing out junk mail every afternoon to organizing financial papers as you pay your bills, keeping up with all that paper can be difficult.

By going paperless, you can reduce the amount of paper clutter in your home and reduce your family’s waste at the same time.

Here are tips for going paperless:

  • Opt-in for paperless billing for all your regular bills
  • Use your phone to take a picture of things you need instead of printing them out
  • Shred anything you don’t need right away to get your paperless lifestyle started
  • Unsubscribe for things on paper you don’t need or can get online. For example, a lot of newspapers can be accessed online.

4) Replace instead of adding.

Getting into the habit of replacing things in your home instead of adding to the things you already have is another great way to embrace the minimalist lifestyle.

Each time you buy something, make sure that thing is replacing something that’s already in your home.

That way, you’ll never be adding to the clutter in your house.

5) Set up dedicated storage around your home.

Every room in your house should have dedicated storage space. 

Without it, all your possessions wind up cluttering the surfaces, which is a definite no-no! 

If your home has closets or drawers set up in every room, this might be enough for you and your family!

But, if you find you’re lacking in storage space, consider adding bookshelves, cubbies, etc. to your space. 

Just be mindful that you don’t go overboard with this, as it can be easy to fall into the trap of wanting to fill up every nook and cranny of your home! 

6) Give everything a home.

After you have taken the time to declutter your house and reorganize each room, take the time to ensure it stays that way!

Make sure everything in your house has a designated spot.

And if you purchase something new, be sure you know exactly where it will go. If you can’t come up with a place to put that new item, you probably don’t need it in the first place.

7) Watch less TV.

As you watch your favorite shows, you’re also inundated with advertisements encouraging you to buy something new.

After so much exposure, you may be tempted to give into those ads and disrupt all the progress you’ve made toward your minimalist lifestyle.

Instead of watching TV, consider other more productive ways you can enjoy your free time, like exercising, learning a new hobby, or reading.

living minimally

8) Plan your meals.

One of the best ways to ensure you’re only buying the food your family needs each week is to take the time to plan your meals.

In addition to helping you reduce your family’s food waste, meal planning will also help you save money at the grocery store.

Each week, set aside an hour to plan out each of the meals your family will eat for the week, including breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks for each day.

Then, make a list of all the ingredients you need for the meals and stick to that list as you shop to avoid purchasing extra food your family won’t eat.

If you’re a beginner to meal planning, the $5 meal plan makes it easy to get started.

For $5/month, they send you a weekly meal plan where every meal will cost approximately $2/person! They save you time and money so that you can focus on doing things you enjoy!

They offer a 14-day FREE trial (approximately 40 recipes) – regular or gluten-free – that you can cancel at any time with no questions asked.

If you’re confident with meal planning:

✅ Here’s my simple meal planner on paper. It’s a digital download so you can print it as many times as you want. Click here to use a 15% off coupon towards your purchase.

how to become a minimalist at home

9) Try out a rotational meal plan. 

Food waste is one of the things we are really bad at in our modern world. 

You plan a meal once, use that ingredient, and then it gets left there until the inevitable expiration date rolls around, and you find yourself throwing it into the trash. 

A great way to combat this problem is by creating a rotational meal plan. 

That means, whatever ingredients don’t get used up on this rotation can get used on the next one! 

10) Purchase reusable items.

Reducing your family’s waste is a great reason to become a minimalist.

One of the best ways to reduce waste and clutter in your home is to invest in reusable items like water bottles, coffee cups, and cloth diapers.

I like having a water bottle close by because it’s a constant reminder to stay hydrated.

This Lifefactory water bottle is great because it’s made of glass but has a silicone sleeve and handle for easier gripping and handling.

I initially found out about this water bottle from my mom’s friends, who were raving about it. They have multiple and place them all over the house!

This water bottle also has an opening that’s large enough to put ice cubes in if you just need to chomp on cubes.

You can also get reusable: 

  • Shopping bags
  • Produce bags
  • Coffee filters
  • Food storage containers
  • Cloth napkins
  • Rechargeable batteries
  • Menstrual cup
  • Digital notebooks
  • Wool dryer balls
  • Travel straw, utensil kit, etc.

11) Use multi-purpose products.

Maximize functionality and minimize clutter by choosing multi-purpose products. 

Items that serve multiple functions, such as a blender that also works as a food processor or a sofa that converts into a bed, can significantly reduce the number of possessions you need. 

This approach not only saves space but also simplifies your daily routines. 

By investing in versatile, high-quality items, you can enjoy greater efficiency and convenience without the excess.

12) Take advantage of your library.

There’s no need to purchase a new book or magazine when you can read it for free and return it to your local library.

The next time you’re ready for some new entertainment, check out your library to find what you need instead of adding to the clutter in your home.

how to minimalism

You don’t even need to read a physical book.

You can listen to a book through Audible, an Amazon company with the world’s largest selection of audiobooks.

Here’s a 30-day trial to Audible, which gets you 2 FREE books! If you cancel within the free trial period, the books are still yours to keep!

Some libraries even offer audiobooks or ebooks now through the use of your library card, which can save you even more money! 

13) Keep track of your spending.

Budgeting is a great way to stay on track financially, but tracking your spending is also a good way to stay on track with your minimalist lifestyle.

Instead of just keeping track of your spending for your budget, take it a step further and track everything you have purchased.

Keeping a running list of each thing you buy, along with how much you spend on it, will make you think twice about everything you spend money on.

This is my Excel budget spreadsheet that I use to keep track of my spending.

It also has monthly and annual income, expense, and savings summaries and charts. It has 3 different calculators to track your early retirement progress!

If you’re interested in purchasing this spreadsheet, you can click here to get a 15% off coupon.

14) Store toys in one toy box.

Keeping up with all your kids’ toys can be a big job.

If you’re living a minimalist lifestyle, you’ll need to reduce the number of toys your kids have.

One simple way to help reduce toy clutter is to store all your kids’ toys in one toy box.

If the toys don’t fit in the box, get rid of them. And each time your child gets a new toy, let your child pick which toy it will replace.

This is our toy storage bin, which I love because it has separate compartments perfect for organizing different size items in the playroom.

The bins are angled for easy access to the toys. There’s nothing above the bins, so the toys can stick out slightly.

15) Go digital.

Many people struggle with minimalism because they feel like they’re forced to give up sentimental things.

But with the help of technology, you can reduce the clutter in your home while still holding on to those sentimental items.

Taking the time to digitize your old photos, family videos, favorite music, and movies will allow you to get rid of the physical stuff while holding onto the memories.

16) Keep decluttering.

Decluttering doesn’t stop after you do it one time.

Maintaining a minimalist lifestyle means continually reducing the things in your life. That means you’ll never be finished clearing out the clutter in your home.

Every few months, take inventory of the things in each room of your house and remove any excess clutter that has accumulated over the past few weeks.

17) Create a cleaning schedule

Finally, maintain a tidy and clutter-free home by establishing a regular cleaning schedule. 

Consistent cleaning habits prevent a mess from accumulating and make maintaining a minimalist space easier. 

Break down tasks into daily, weekly, and monthly routines to ensure every area of your home gets the attention it needs. 

Having a consistent cleaning schedule can also help you take inventory of things you might need to repair or replace in the future so that you can work them into your budget.

Related Ideas for How to Be A Minimalist

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4 Comments

  1. I am in the process of purging 30 years household of family items. We are moving into a beach house which we will continue to rent and travel while it is rented. After sifting through many websites on how to reduce and minimalize our possessions, your article has the most down to earth recommendations and I love the links to other sources. I will be earmarking your website for future review. Thank you so much!

  2. I just had to move out of my apartment that held 20 yrs of stuff and left it all behind due to bed bugs. I am going to get a new place in April. I am wanting to be a minimalist. Your article is very helpful. My hardest thing is I keep thinking of things I will need for my new home. I know I need to shorten that list. I tend to buy home decor and let it collect dust. Change of thinking will take time but I’m sure I can do it.

    1. Thanks for sharing your story! You definitely can accomplish minimalism! You’ve already identified what you need to do and be watchful for. That’s a huge step! All the best on your minimalism journey!

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