About Minimalist Lifestyle

My name is Mark Lowe and I live in Nova Scotia, Canada with my teenage son.

This website is mostly about living a minimalist lifestyle. From time to time there will be other topics such as healthy living, dealing with clutter, how to save more money, happiness, contentment, simple living, frugality, and maybe even minimalist decorating and design ideas.

It’s about clearing the clutter, both physical and mental, so we can focus on what is truly important.

“There are really only two steps to simplifying. Identify what’s most important to you. Eliminate everything else.” – Leo Babauta

I want to live a life that matters. I believe that there is more to life than stuff, spending money and being in debt.

I want to live consciously. This means I want to be present in every moment.

I am not an extreme minimalist, but I certainly have a lot less stuff than most folks and I love my own minimalist lifestyle.

That being said, please realize that I am a work in progress.

So what’s in this for you?

You found this blog on living a minimalist lifestyle because you have an interest in simplifying your life. You know that there is more to life than just having stuff, and you want advice on how to make living a minimalist lifestyle a reality.

This blog can certainly help you with this.

I hope you will read something here that helps you or maybe even inspires you to take action to live a more minimalist lifestyle.

What you should do right now is scroll to the bottom of the page and subscribe to this blog so you don’t miss a minute of fun.

I also strongly recommend reading this post

It has received 8000 page views, 442 comments and 695 Likes!

“Live simply.”

86 responses to “About Minimalist Lifestyle

  1. Hi Mark,
    Found your blog today, it rocks!
    I am already quite minimalist and recently traveled to Chile and the USA for 3 weeks with a carry on bag only (including running kit as I took part in a half marathon while in the USA). It was awesome and so much more relaxing, also it was 2 weeks before I realized I hadn’t opened the trunk on the rental car!!

    Keep up the good work

    Mike

    • Hi Mike. Thanks a lot for your kind words and comment. Yeah I went to Europe last summer for a month with a very small school sized backpack. It made my trip so much easier and more enjoyable. I couldn’t believe the amount of stuff some people were dragging around. Some of them had 2 huge packs jammed with stuff. How could they enjoy themselves? Minimalist travel is the way to go!! Thanks Mike.
      Mark

  2. Mark, great blog! After reading many of your posts on minimalism and finance, feels as if we are of kindred spirit. I subscribed to your blog, looking forward to reading future posts.

    In case you are interested, my blog is located at: http://runninginspired.wordpress.com/

  3. Yet another great post Mark – thanks for visiting my blog too. If you ever have any interest in doing some guest posting or need any guest posts, I’d love to help. Thanks! Keep on!

  4. Hi, I just stop by your blog. Just want to say hi :)

  5. I love you blog, and find it very encouraging. I think I am quite a bit farther behind you on the minimalist path, but we are working our way this direction. Anyways, just wanted to say HI, and tell you that I love your blog ;)

    • Thanks so much for your kind words. I am not “minimalist lifestyle” perfect by any stretch. I have lots of stuff that I still need to purge. I too am a work in progress.

      Thanks for reading and for sharing your comments. I really appreciate it

  6. Hello Mark!

    I’m a 18 years old boy who’s struggling to find, what I would call, “the way to live my life for a life filled with peace and happiness”. I’m currently living in Sweden with my family and I’ve always felt that something is missing, all the time. I’ve tried to fill it with stuff, stuff, stuff and if that haven’t worked, I’ve tried to fill it with more stuff. Until one day when I came across an article about a guy whom lived with one backpack of belongings and traveled the world. I started to read more and more about the “minimalistic lifestyle” and it all started to make sense to me. A lots of people around me started to get confused when I started to get rid of stuff that I don’t need, nor wanted anymore.
    “You’re going to regret this”, “Are you out of your mind?”, “Are you stupid?” There where a storm of comments from friends, family and my (now ex) girlfriend. All thought I didn’t really care. I continued until I found the balance for the right amount of stuff for me and now I’ve much more time to do things that I love to do, things that I have to do (for school, work, cleaning etc.) and there’s like this weight lifted of my shoulders.
    I’ve also been inspired to travel the world, as soon as I’m done with school and get vacation from my work this summer I’ll go do the transsiberian railway travel and I’ve also decided to do a parachute jump. Mostly because I really need to overcome my fear of hight and what better way than doing this? ha ha

    Anyway the reason I share this with you is because your blog has been an major part of this change in my life. I love reading it and I find it very inspirational and I just needed to let you know this. So please, whatever you do Mark, continue to write the way you do. Do know that there’s one young boy in Sweden reading your blog and appreciating it.

    Thank you!

    With love,

    K

    • I am honored and humbled that you are inspired by my blog and what I have to say. It is not easy to be 18 and trying to figure out how to live your life. You may feel pulled in many different directions at once. I remember. I thought going off to college and then buying a house were the way to do things. I was wrong. It may be the way for some people and that is okay. But not for me. I am a wanderer.

      Just try to do what makes you happy. Easy to say but a bit harder to do at times. There are so many amazing places in the world and there are jobs you can do or volunteering you can do to improve the lives of others.

      Follow your heart.

      And let me know how you are getting along.

      Thanks so much for contacting me. It means a lot

      Mark

    • I’m not sure why I got a bit teary as I read your message. Perhaps, it’s about that guy you mentioned with only a backpack and travelled the world or maybe I am wishing I’m still your age …with time to do life all over again and do it right. Good luck and thank you :-).

      I’m a big fan of minimalist ideas. The problem with me is having minimal :-( follow through on things I must to do live it. I believe this blog and ideas shared on here will give me the nudge I need.

      Al

  7. Pingback: Why Do We Blog? | Minimalist Living

  8. Hi Mark, I stumbled upon your Blog. I also wanted to share my appreciation for you posting such inspirational articles. I am on the same path as you, and it’s a lot of fun learning how to make the most out of what you already have. You stated very well that Happiness comes from within. I identified with your interests in tiny house living without clutter. Hoping to have my divorce finalized some day as well. Hope you keep writing. Good to see a few more like minded souls out here in the Universe. Blessings.

  9. Hi Mark. Just been reading your blog and love the posts. So many people are occupied with accumulating things, and still it never seems to be enough. What they forget is that we came into this world with nothing, and when we die we will take nothing back with us. Minimalistic is the way to go.
    Many thanks and look forward to your next post
    Cairobackpacker

    • Wow. I cannot wait to check out your blog. My goal is to save as much money as possible over the next few years and then just backpack around the world for the rest of my days. The only way to do this to to live a minimalist lifestyle.

      Any other tips??

      Thanks for reading and commenting.

      • Sounds like a plan. When living a minimalistic lifestyle try it in all aspects of your life. With food (eat the right kind and not in excess), with buying things (buy good quality items so that they last for longer, causing less waste) and with your environment (create a calming and clean atmosphere in your house).

        Also when you do leave to backpack around the world, sort out any debts you may have with anyone, be it money or any minor feuds. With no debts and minimum possessions you will truly be living the minimalistic lifestyle:)

  10. I found your blog because I am also interested in minimalist living.

    Although our philosophies have some similarities, I think we are doing this for different reasons.

    My reason is a conviction from God.

    Getting distracted with stuff and consumerism keeps us from a real relationship with God. Having a relationship with God (not a religion) is what is fulfilling. And it turns out, He wants what is best for us.

    So, I live simply and I spend more time doing what He shows me is best. That is what I can now call living.

  11. Hi Mark, I really like your blog. My husband and I recently bought and renovated a home and decorated it more minimalist style which is kind of out of the norm for Bahamas. Its funny to hear family members come over and say “when you finish decorating your house………” not recognizing that we are pretty much finished minus a few items…..LOL. I just love a clutter-free, minimalist environment because it makes me feel light, sunny and breezy in my mind, soul and spirit. As a new follower of your blog, I am looking forward to future posts because of the great content and because it kind of gives me a little connection to Canada…..I did my undergraduate degree at Acadia in Wolfville and my graduate degree at McGill i Montreal and totally loved both experiences. Anyway, enough reminiscing……….Happy impactful and successful blogging!……Kim

  12. My husband and I have been living as minimalists here in California for decades. We are lucky, because living with a focus on family and love of nature, and de-emphasizing the collection of “stuff” comes naturally to us. The hard part is others who don’t understand how we can be happy living like this. Hopefully we set an example. Our children, now that they are adults, understand what it really means, and that is enough.

  13. I loved reading your posts, and decided following you was a great idea; it’s good to be reminded of what stripped back contentment is – I/we need reminding.
    I am an Aphorist and have written about this topic. One of my aphorisms is this – you may relate…

    ‘Consumerism is to an adult
    what a play-pen is to a toddler -
    recreational imprisonment.’
    (C) Kelly Hartland

    Thank you :) KH

  14. Thank you Mark, all the best for you and your son. Be encouraged to know that you are encouraging us here in Austria. Sometimes it´s hard, not to have a new car as the neighbours, not to have the latest mobile as the workmates, not to have an automatic heating system as friends have, … But many other times it is freedom, not needing to work around the clock to finance all the modern stuff, sitting in a old but storytelling chair, trinking handmade coffee in an old cup …
    Thank you and God bless you.
    Leopold Kleedorfer

  15. Hi Mark (and son),
    greeting from me in the UK (and my 3 daughters) – I’m what you might call a ‘recovering Messie’, and so your blog is very helpful to me in that I’m trying to simplify our life, particularly the sheer energy-sapping amount of stuff we own and trip over wherever we turn! Stuff is supposed to be a blessing, not a curse; my current aim is to shovel it out of the house at a slightly faster rate than it flows in! Peace and beauty in my household are my goals… not there yet by a long chalk, but we will get there.
    I look forward to exploring more round here when I’ve finished with the dust bunny hordes today!
    Sue

  16. Hi Mark,
    I just find your blog by accident. Although I am not a minimalist anymore. After having a baby boy 3 years ago. I have to prepare everything for him.
    I like your writing. Keep writing and be simple. Cos life is simple.
    Cahya, Indonesia

  17. Hi Mark. I just found your blog. Awesome! This is my goal,also, so I am subscribing. I’ve been moving things out and to charities–that is a start. I want freedom, quiet and less to deal with on a daily basis. Love your writing–it’s also very minimalist :-)

  18. I’m no minimalist…not yet anyway, but am intrigued by the idea. I do like minimalist music – Steve Reich, for example, so I guess there’s hope. Looking forward to reading more of your posts.

  19. Hi. Interesting posts. Is it a trend or a culture shift? I’m hoping the latter.
    Anyway, a few years ago we decided to shift to a more minimalistic lifestyle (not total minimalism). We had a house and a cottage. We decided to renovate the cottage (we did need a bit more space to live in it comfortably) and sell the house. Well, we’re still waiting to move forward. The house hasn’t sold yet, so we’re in limbo. The real estate market here in the valley (yep, Nova Scotia) is in the toilet right now, but we’re still hoping and making plans. In the midst of all this I lost my job, so we’ve really had to deal with minimalism; but I must say, we’re doing well considering. On a positive note, we’re learning lots about our spending habits and what we really need in our lives. Good luck to everyone who wants to “minimize.”

    • Interesting that the real estate market is a bit slow in the Valley right now while the Halifax real estate market is BOOMING. You have made the right choice for yourselves, that much is certain. Just take it one day at a time. Everything happens for a reason.

      What are your passions?

      What would you do or talk about all day? Your favorite topic? Maybe you could create your own business or job from that.

      • Caerlynn Nash

        Everything happens for a reason. That’s what I keep reminding myself. :-)
        I suspect your questions were rhetorical, but I’ll bite anyway. I haven’t made it my new living yet, but I’ve been doing some writing and painting. A few of my recent art pieces are posted at http://caerlynnart.wordpress.com if you care to visit. (Hope you don’t mind blatant self-promotion.).
        I’ve heard about the market in Halifax. I’m envious ;-). I’m hoping we might see some trickle-down effect here sometime very soon.
        Take care.

  20. Great blog with helpful tips. One day I will get over my “hoarder-like” tendencies lol

  21. Thank you for creating a blog centered on this important topic..I enjoyed much of what I read and just subscribed..Look forward to reading and contemplating more of these suggestions :)

  22. Very happy to have stumbled onto your blog. I have this same viewpoint and it’s always nice to find others who think the same way. I look forward to more posts on this subject and hope to find new ways to continue on with the “live simply” lifestyle.

  23. Love your posts Mark! Keep up the great work.

  24. Having moved over 105 times in my lifetime I a accustomed with decluttering :) and minimalist living, yet in my last move although I started with 2 suitcases I had a 1 bedroom apartment full of stuff – most of which had been given to me – after only 2 years!

  25. Hi Mark!

    It’s Kristian Burrows from home… I just finished reading several books on the topic and I am in the process of getting rid of most of My material possessions and embracing the truth of what it means to be useful and self sufficient. I feel the state of the earth and the quality of the future for our children is at stake if there is not a fundamental paradigm shift towards minimalist living. I live in SoCal – where some feel is the birthplace of over consumerism! I face it everyday as I have to explain to My neighbors that hanging cloths on the line and collecting rainwater saves us in so many ways that they never even think about :(
    I belong to a Survival Preparedness group that teaches many skills that help bring us back to our independence and reminds us of the values of what is truly important. We had an economic round table discussion the other night and it was pretty much unanimous that right now the best investment is in learning new skills and developing a barter mind set. Skills that are useful to others and that help you become self sustainable in everyday life and also in emergency/disaster situations.
    Your blog is great and so is your lifestyle!

    • Good grief!! Hi Kristian! The girl I ran away with:) Bet you didn’t even remember that.

      Over consumerism is almost everywhere I am sure. It is interesting that some people don’t think about ecological measures much.

      I like the sound of your Survival Preparedness group and the round table discussion. Very interesting.

      Thanks so much for commenting.

      Cheers,

      Mark

  26. This is fantastic. I’ve been trying to move toward a lifestyle that better fits my belief system, and so far that includes things like having less stuff (waaay less stuff), giving more, walking instead of driving, eating seasonally and ethically, growing vegetables and minimizing waste. After living overseas and being able to name everything I had with me off the top of my head, I saw how freeing it can be.
    And it’s so good to see that this way of life is always good, to the point that even little kids recognise it. Last year some friends and I organized a Christmas thing along the lines of ‘presence’ rather than ‘presents’ and we spent the money we didn’t spend on gifts on supplying a region in Kenya with water tanks. Hearing little kids say that they didn’t want too many presents so they could give made me realize that it was time to get really active in this. Starting a blog of moments, rather than things, that I’m thankful for has been part of this.
    Will definitely be back for inspiration, ideas, and probably also a swift kick in the behind when I need it! Thanks for what you do.

  27. Nice blog Mark. I’m a budding mnmlst and I am seeing how it can be applied to virtually all areas of my life. I’m getting energized every time I can find something to subtract from my life. I’ll enjoy your writing moving forward.

  28. I too am a work in progress. Looking forward to more.

  29. Love your blog. Unfortunately it’s kept me up way past my bed time :D

  30. Hi Mark,
    Nice blog!! A year ago, my husband and I decided to sell our house and most of our belongings and buy a boat. My husband quit his job and we moved to the coast. We spent last summer decluttering our lives by either selling our stuff or giving it to charity. A year on and we are about to move with our two daughters onto the 36 foot yacht we bought. Decluttering our lives was theraputic. The hardest part was parting company with my huge library of books, but seeing them go to new owners and talking about them with the people I sold them to had a good effect. As soon as we move onto our boat – a little over a week from now – we’re going to sell our car…yippeee! It’s amazing how little you need to be happy and to keep two small children entertained and content.
    I look forward to reading more of you blog.

    • Sigh. Okay so yes I am both happy for you and a bit envious. Okay more than a bit!

      No seriously that is fantastic that you guys have done this. So wonderful for your kids as well. How old are they. You should post some photos!!

  31. LOL! I do remember! It was so cold and wet… I was definitely not prepared back then!
    Living in SD I have the pleasure of being able to garden all year round so I have been focusing on growing My own food. Being a vegetarian helps ;)
    Keep up the good work!

    Kristian

  32. About Minimalist Lifestyle | Minimalist Living Very nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again soon!

  33. I love your blog. I have nominated you for the One Lovely Blog Award! Have a great day. http://naturallyfrugalhomemaker.com/2012/05/16/one-lovely-blog-award/

  34. I have been surfing online more than 3 hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. It’s pretty worth enough for me. Personally, if all web owners and bloggers made good content as you did, the net will be much more useful than ever before.

  35. Hello minimalistlifestyle.
    It’s with great pleasure to award you the Liebester Blog award. It’s something people pass around to recognize good blogs, and I enjoy your entries.
    The acceptance conditions are :

    1. Thank your award presenter on your blog and link back to him/her
    2. Copy and paste the award to your blog
    3. Present the Liebster Award to 5 blogs that you think deserve to be recognised.
    4. Let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.

    (You can find the award on my page, by the way I said nice things about you!)

  36. Mark Aldridge

    When I was growing up it seemed people believed that toys (and a desire to have mine mine mine) was a childish behavior that one would eventually grow out of.

    I suppose due to marketing and other factors, that has changed, and now you are called childish if you don’t wish to “grow up” and buy a big house and acquire nice things to show off to your neighbors.

    It all seems very childish to me … this desire to have “stuff”. You take what you NEED and you leave the rest, because owning things you don’t need results in those things owning you.

    I’ve never liked material things and have always lived by voluntary simplicity. This allowed me to obtain a great education with my time and retire when I was 35 years old.

    I’m coming to terms with the fact that somehow, in this materialistic society, I’m the strange one simply because I’m a minimalist. It used to bother me now it just puzzles me really. I can’t see how people can be so unhappy, going to jobs they can’t stand, simply to buy things they don’t want about 2 days after buying them, but then can’t bring themselves to get rid of them, so they go rent a storage container for them, so the added expense can then cause them to have to work more which makes them more unhappy.

    I hope (wish) there are more people catching on to the fact the voluntary simplicity is far better than conspicuous consumption.

    My post sounds a bit jaded I know. I’m actually very happy in my simple life, I just wish there were more like minded people around.

  37. Hi Mark! As you know, I think your blog is really great, and very inspiring, so I have nominated you for the Beautiful Blogger Award. Head on over to my post http://agirlcalledemily.wordpress.com/2012/05/27/appreciation-of-a-different-sort-this-time/ about it to find out more about accepting!

  38. You’ve been tagged! http://housewifedownunder.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/tag-youre-it/
    Hope it generates some new visitors to your great blog!

  39. Hi! I nominated you for (which means you receive) an Inspiring Blog Award. There are no statues or plaques or other excess *stuff* that come with that, just my admiration for your courage to divest and decrapify your life and existence. I’ve provided a link on my blog to yours, along with the reasons I nominated/awarded you. Or at least as much of “the reasons” as I can manage to put into words. Follow the rather flexible rules of the award (outlined on my blog) if you will. In any case, this gave me the opportunity to let you know that I really do appreciate your blog and the time you take in writing it!

  40. Hi Mark, I accidentally posted the preceding reply to this page. I’m using a strange computer while I’m traveling and some of it’s set up functions are different then my own. So, bingo – posted reply in the wrong place. Please delete the preceding comment and this one since it doesn’t apply here. I reposted on the main paid under the appropriate topic, so if you think my thoughts and ideas add anything to the discourse, you can approve it over there. If you don’t, then you can, of course, delete it.

    I would have emailed you, but I couldn’t find a contact email function on your site, so that’s why I’m contacting you this way.

    I’m also going to look through the rest of your blog and bookmark and most likely subscribe because you have the kind of content that is related to mine and I like networking with others of like mind.

    Cheers,
    Ed Helvey

  41. Wow great blog! As a massage therapist, I see a lot of very stressed out people. Most of the stress comes from too much clutter in peoples lives. Too many things to keep up with,trying to pay for stuff they don’t need, etc. All ending up in anxiety!
    Keep it simple, it feels great!
    xoxo

  42. I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy what you do here. I have a small blog roll on my site, and most of my outgoing clicks are to your site. People, as do I, want to simplify life. (Haha, and what I try to do on my site is simplify history.) Keep up the good work!

  43. Hi,
    Just discovered your blog. I’m next door in NB. I’m far from a minimalist, but I’m slowly moving in that direction. ;)
    Dee

  44. Hi there, I have just nominated you for the “Very Inspiring Blogger Award” :-)

    http://oneinabillionblog.com/2012/08/26/very-inspiring-blogger-award/

  45. Pingback: Blog Boost: Smash Attack Reads! « The Boyish Booklover

  46. Hey Mark, love the blog! I was wondering how you set up the “posts” link at the top of the blog?

  47. Love your blog and nominated you for a blog award. I know you quit writing it, but I felt you should know it was award worthy to me. There’s no pressure or anything you don’t even have to accept if you don’t want to. I just wanted you to know that I think you have a great blog. For details, you can click on this link: http://grannyslittleprojects.wordpress.com/2012/11/08/poem-awarded/

  48. Just discovered your blog and I’m sorry you’ve discontinued it!

  49. Good day, have you thought about occassionally sharing your thoughts through another medium? It’s sad to see you discontinue your blog:(
    If you want to guest blog on my new network I would love to feature you as a contributor!!

    http://MinLiv.in

    Cheers-
    Shane

  50. I’ve nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award! Hopefully you will continue with your writing.
    http://imarunnerandsocanyou.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/very-inspiring-blogger/

  51. Just coming across your blog for the first time and very excited to follow along a male perspective from our friends up north. Love your simplistic style of writing as well. Really gets to the heart of the matter.

  52. I’m not sure where you’re getting your info, but great topic.

    I needs to spenhd some time learning more or understanding more.
    Thanks for great info I was looking for this information
    for my mission.

  53. It’s not my first time to pay a visit this web site, i am browsing this web site dailly and take fastidious information from here everyday.

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  55. Thank you very much for all the tips. Hope to learn more from you. Keep it up!
    June Librarian

  56. Hi,

    Great blog, I have subscribed :)

    I am also taking steps to live a more minimal life. I have just started a year of not buying anything new. Check out my blog if you like http://www.cullthecrap.blogspot.com.au.

    spread the simple word!

  57. Nice write up. Real inspiring. I’m starting my minimalist journey this year, and having lots of fun playing with different possibilities. I wish you continued success. If you fancy check out my new blog at

    http://www.rebelsimplista.wordpress.com

    Great to know there are others like you out there. Tc. Rebel Simplista

  58. What’s up friends, pleasant post and pleasant arguments commented at this place, I am actually enjoying by these.

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