With interest rates and the cost of goods and services soaring, the cost of living crisis is negatively affecting many of us.
But, if you’re a minimalist, you may be better equipped to deal with the storm than others.
1. As a minimalist you’re more conscious of bringing additional items into your home. Therefore you’re not buying anything new so the current price rises won’t affect you as much.
2. If you’re still decluttering, you may be able to sell your unwanted items. This will help you to make extra money to put toward your growing bills.
3. One of the joys of minimalism is that less stuff equals less chores. If you have fewer things to clean or tidy away, you’ll have more time. Time that you could potentially use to earn more money.
4. Or you could use the time to grow your own fruit and vegetables or to make your own frozen meals from scratch, saving money on groceries in the future.
5. If you’ve been living a minimalist lifestyle for a while, you’ll have already reduced your spending on new items and may therefore have some savings in the bank. Which will now be earning you a higher rate of interest.
6. On the other hand, soaring interest rates are making debt unaffordable so you won’t want to borrow money to buy anything new.
Using money you haven’t earned to buy things you don’t need to impress people you don’t like.Robert Quillen, 1928
Plus, on the flip side, the cost of living crisis actually makes it easier to make minimalist choices. :
1. If you have to spend more money on heating or food, there’ll be less spare money available for you to spend on other, unnecessary items.
2. If you’re working extra hours to earn more money to cover your rising bills, you’ve got less free time to go shopping so you won’t be able to new buy items.
3. If you’re getting a higher interest rate on your savings, you’ll want to keep your money in the bank account and not be tempted to buy any new items to clutter up your home.
4. When living with fewer items you’re more grateful for those things you have. Having a high level of gratitude can help you to feel calmer about crises like this, as you want less and appreciate what you do have.
Those who display a high level of gratitude are much mor elikely to have below-average levels of materialism.Polak and McCullough, 2006
I’ve found that the way I’ve dealt with the cost of living crisis is in complete contrast to my reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic – when I felt the need to hoard my own stuff during 2020 and became a compulsive shoppier during lockdown 3.
Has being a minimalist helped you to cope with the cost of living crisis? Have you noticed a difference in how you approach your finances since embracing minimalism?
Polak, E. L. and McCullough, M. E. (2006) Is gratitude an alternative to materialism? Journal of Happiness Studies 7, No3, September 2006
Quillen, R. (1928) The Detroit Free Press, June 4, Page 6, Column 4, Detroit, Michigan. (Newspapers_com)