When properly applied, minimalism can be of great benefit when used to further your priorities. For instance, when Katie was so very ill with MRSA there was talk of admitting her to UK Hospital in Lexington. This hospital is over an hour away; since I refuse to leave my daughter in a strange place alone and frightened and ill I was left in a quandary. I did not have sufficient funds to either board my pets for that duration or buy fuel for numerous trips back home.
My priority was to get my daughter well so I did what minimalism dictated: I eliminated my writing laptop so that I would have sufficient cash reserves in the event she did have to be hospitalized.
I still needed to write so I took some of the money and purchased a low-end iPad mini. This enabled me to access all of my work and continue to write through the situation; I have been maintaining this website and working on my books exclusively from this device for a couple of months now.
While Katie did not need to go to Lexington she did need other things to aid her recovery; I doled out the value of that laptop on vitamins, supplements, fuel and other items as she walked the path back to health. The last little bit was clicked away when I filed my taxes the other day.
I miss my laptop but I don’t regret eliminating it. The welfare of my daughter (and myself) is worth more than the cost of any machine. While I can always get another laptop I could never get another Katie.
Now that she is well I can again combine minimalism with my priorities to focus on what needs to be done. I need to save for another laptop, eliminate the carpets in this home (doctor’s orders) and work on the book projects that were neglected while Katie was so ill.
I may also have to juggle the expense of Marching Band should Katie decide to join; since she is my first priority that will bump the laptop down a notch depending upon her decision.
Thanks to minimalism (and my personal set of priorities) I know that I don’t have to do it all at once. I know that I can focus on one thing at a time until that objective is achieved. This helps to eliminate the sense of overwhelment that would otherwise cloud my brain.
If you have a lot that you need to accomplish rank them all according to priority. For instance, it is much more important to pay the electric bill than it is to buy a Wii. Use minimalism to eliminate the nonessential and then focus on the most important one. Work your way down the list (reevaluating your list from time to time) until you are done.
Don’t worry about the lower-ranked items; they will get done when they get done. Of course, if an opportunity arises to eliminate one of the smaller objectives by all means take it and move on.
This is how I live my life. I have used this method to eliminate working at public jobs, become a stay at home single mom and to build sufficient passive income to take care of us even when life throws me a curve ball.
Do you use this method on your priorities? Do you feel that it benefits you? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.