Real Life Minimalists: CJ

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.

Today, CJ from the Philippines tells us how she’s embracing minimalism as she graduates college. What a wonderful way to embark on life as a young adult!

CJ writes:



I’m CJ Sasuman from Philippines, and I am a minimalist-in-training. The concept transpired to me just a few months ago. In the course of that time, I was in search for people who were also into paring things down to basic, keeping only the ones I need and actually use. The first one I clicked is a forum, the Female Network. It is the first Philippine website for women – lots of topics and discussions in different threads. As I encountered the word, reading all their opinions and experiences, I am completely struck and interested.

When I was a little girl, I love to collect adorable things. Dolls, little houses, toy kitchen wares, and so on. I dreamed of having my own palace-like room filled with cute dresses and pink things. Going forward to my early teenage years, my obsession with clothes, jewelries and accessories was horrible. When I was in my early college years, my attention was on books, notebooks, art materials, black and stylish clothing, and online shopping. Buying things I hardly ever touched, accumulating dusts in my room. I’m also a fan of souvenirs, mementos and just-in-case items. The goal is to keep in level with the Joneses, gigantic mansion, vacation houses, and cars with multiple jobs to suit that lifestyle.

All those years are gone. I am now a graduating college student and my mindset had entirely changed. Once I got rid of the unnecessary objects, I became addicted. Seems like there is more I can give, trash and donate. Keeping in control of the physical clutter is a continuous process and requires discipline and self-control. Leo Babauta of Zen Habits, Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus of The Minimalists, Jessica Dang of Minimal Student and Francine Jay of Miss Minimalist proved that minimalism is not just about eliminating material things; but is also applicable in different aspects of life. As of today, I am honest to state that I haven’t yet fully succeeded in managing the emotional, mental and other clutters of life. Still, I am determined to make progress and never thought of looking back to my old habits.

Minimalism helped me to focus on what’s truly important. One of the best results is that I became more in control of the things that can ruin my day and being able to handle my emotion. I’ve never been this free and happy. It improved my calm personality realizing that everything in life happens for a reason. Passion, growth, experiences, relationships and contribution – intangible things I want to nurture. I want to travel and explore the world with just a backpack that fits all my few worldly possessions. I am living life to the fullest. I’m not forcing anybody to follow my path. I am grateful to share my outlook and perspective in life. I’m lucky to have the people who support me in this lifestyle. Minimalism has led me into a direction where I can truly speak my heart’s desires.

{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.}

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