Real Life Minimalists: Amnesty

Every Monday I post Real Life Minimalists, a profile of one of my readers in their own words. If you’d like to participate, click here for details.

This week, I’m pleased to feature Amnesty, who tells us how she and her husband radically downsized to a hotel room. (Having lived in hotels for extended periods myself, I totally relate to the freedom this affords!). Check out more of her writing (and her workshops) on her blog.

Amnesty writes:

I have always had the desire for mobility and travel. I feel that human beings have basic primal needs that can’t be met by fighting traffic, sitting in a cubicle, performing meaningless tasks and buying more stuff. So, I knew there had to be another way. So, I purged. Slowly at first, then drastically. Finally, my husband and I made our tiny home dreams a reality and we bought and live in a hotel room. It is about 350 SF, with a king size bed and a kitchenette. Fully furnished.

It is also in an urban area, so I don’t need a car. Our monthly expenses are ridiculously low, yet my life enjoyment and engagement is the highest it has ever been.

I love how Mary Oliver asked the question: What will you do with your one wild and precious life?

For me, shoes, cars, big houses and fancy job titles, just don’t cut it. I want to make a legacy. I want to make an impact. I want to help others. I want experiences, not stuff. I want to create without worrying about a large income. I want to experience nature and culture. I want to travel the world for months at a time and work and volunteer overseas.

I also realized, that most of what I want and makes me the happiest, except travel, is free or cheap. So, now I can refer to myself as FIRE’d up, wild and free.

This is how I want to live my one wild and precious life.

{If you’d like to learn more about minimalist living, please consider reading my book, The Joy of Less, A Minimalist Living Guide, or joining my email list.}

20 comments to Real Life Minimalists: Amnesty

  • Suffering is caused by false judgements of value.

  • I am glad you have worked out what is truely important and you are living the life you have always wanted.

  • Ronni F.

    What a beautiful question: What will you do with your one wild and precious life? :)

  • Allison

    Great article. My family is about to make a similar leap in the next 2 weeks to what I will call “lighter living,” and I’m feeling that last minute anxiety… Any advice? (We will be selling most possessions and moving out West to explore for several months.)

  • Donna

    How do you buy a hotel room?

  • It’s amazing how a shift of what you value in life, changes your complete life and happiness level. I just wrote about a kindness movement and how couple travels in their RV 6 months a year, leaving tokens of kindness behind. It’s amazing that instead of wasting your life commuting and working at a job you dislike you can refocus and put your priorities to work for you! Congratulations on your new and wonderful life. I’m still downsizing…but it will come.

    • That’s cool, I will check out the article. We want to also give back. We live near a hospital and we want to use our hotel room to give some free nights away to someone who is visiting due to an illness or a sick child. It feels good to be able to help others!

  • Carol

    Amnesty, what did you mean when you said you bought a hotel room? Is that an option your hotel offered? It does sound like a great idea. I’ve heard people suggest it but never before anyone who lived that way.

  • FIREd up and living in a hotel room – sounds like a dream lifestyle! Do share how you go about buying a hotel room, inquiring minds want to know. Incidentally, I live in a flat that is probably smaller than a hotel room, but there’s no room service here… ;-)

  • laura ann

    A single person could try to negotiate monthly rent for a motel room with a small kitchen area, like people that travel on business, not being in the room except to sleep and change clothes, or college students who are gone most the day. Single active seniors who are tired of house upkeep and yard also could look into this. I would rec. furnishing my own linens and kitchen items (dishes, cookware, etc) and only would need room vacuumed once a week and wash my own towels and sheets. Mom and pop motels would be best bet some chains may be too pricey. cable, pool perhaps fitness area, and wi fi incl with rent.

  • Helen

    Interesting read but not for me. That’s what I love about minimalism though…no one size fits all. Enjoyed reading your story.

  • Carol

    For people who, like me, are wondering about buying a hotel room, Amnesty explains what she did in this article:

  • Thanks Carol, that was an interesting read. We don’t have anything like this in the UK, which is a shame. A great way for singles, couples and retireers to live without tying up all your capital in property.

  • Tina

    We bought a condo years ago and bought second hand furniture except for the beds. We retired and take classes and do volunteer work. I was asked to talk about how we live on very little and I’ve written about not wasting what we have. Especially now, our environmental causes are very important to us and our political causes will need more money. By not spending on things we don’t need we can contribute as much as possible.

  • Tina

    My husband of 45 years would like to live in a large home on 3 acres. Since he has no mechanical skills and no interest in gardening or mowing a lawn I find this fascinating. We had a small house and yard for 25 years and he never fixed anything or did any yard work. I like to grow flowers on our small balcony and keep clearing things out. Living in a hotel sounds fine to me.

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