If you are free to live your life in a minimalist space you are very fortunate. For many people, and I feel like many minimalists, in order to live simply we choose to live with roommates or with family members. I am currently home from school for winter break and my family would not be considered minimalists. Even at college, I would not consider many of my roommates to be minimalists; however, our spaces are a lot more separated and we are able to keep the majority of our belongings in our individual rooms.
Sharing a space with people who do not have an interest in minimalism or decluttering can be really frustrating, as I have seen all the benefits minimalism can bring to the physical and mental space people occupy. Through this expereince, I have come up with a way that I can begin to find peace in a situation that may not be ideal.
When feeling frustrated with the way another person maintains a household, or really when you become faced with someone who has varying opinions from yours, it helps to simply remember that like yourself, this person wants to live a happy life free of suffering. Although you may disagree with how another person reaches happiness, you can put yourself into their shoes and see that they are doing what they think is best for themselves. And to an extent, you have to respect that this person is seeking happiness just as you are. Just because someone does not keep a tidy home, or lives with more than you think is necessary, it is their life and they are more than entitled to live it the way they see fit.
This helps you see the other person as an equal, versus a person who, because they don’t live like you, is inferior (which I struggle with embarrassingly more than I would like to admit). When you see the person as you would see yourself, you can more easily accept the person for who they are and can even respect them. Respecting the way another person lives, and accepting that it is a valid way of living, allows for you to release the need to completely control the environment you’re living in and become more calm in an environment you see as less ideal.
I know that it can be difficult not to want to declutter everyone else’s life because you are absolutely in love with the lifestyle you lead. Hopefully through the energy you begin to exude once you live the life you want to, others will see this lightness and soon follow in your footsteps. Until then, it helps to take a deep breath and remember, we are all questing for the same thing, happiness, safety, and love.
Thank you for reading this blog post, I would love to hear of any other tips you have for living with non-minimalists down below! Until next week, see you later!