As a college student I arguably spend more time with my friends and peers than perhaps an adult who doesn’t get to live with their friends. As you begin to simplify your life, the people around you begin to see the changes of your new lifestyle. They see how visibly clean your space is, how much more relaxed you are, and people can generally sense when your attitudes and goals have changed. Sometimes when people see these changes they are not thrilled. They can ridicule and question you for your decisions, without having any real understanding in how much your life as improved; people simply projecting their insecurities onto you. On the other hand, the majority of people I interact with see the changes I have made in my life to be positive ones.
There is a difference from others simply observing your behaviors and when they begin mirroring your behaviors. I have had a few of my friends tell me in the recent months how they have been minimizing their belongings, and how they see the benefit of having less things. They come to tell me about the changes they are making in their lives with excitement, and how I have been an inspiration to them. And although my main purpose in practicing minimalism is to improve my own life, I would be lying if I said their words weren’t motivating, flattering, and reassuring.
I bring this up, not to “toot my own horn”, but to stress that people learn through observation. There is no way that you can force minimalism onto anyone, but by acting as a model for them, they can begin to improve their lives in the ways they see fit. It also feels much more rewarding to have someone change their lifestyle because of how much they noticed your growth than dragging someone to mimic your way of life.
I hope this post reminds you that you are doing the right thing for yourself, and even if friends or family members do not agree, they can see the positive changes in your life. You never know what could happen, maybe on day they will be so moved by your journey that they start one of their own.
Let me know what you think down below. All the best!