When I first discovered Minimalism, I fell in love with the concept of living with less. The simplicity, the lightness and the purity of the idea was what drew me to it. However, after watching countless videos on Minimalism and decluttering, I feel like even this simple idea is now being exploited and commercialised. With so many Youtubers doing decluttering videos and giving it a Minimalist tag, I feel like the white, clean canvas of Minimalism is being smudged by dirty little fingers.
Don’t get me wrong, I think there are a handful of Youtubers who are genuine Minimalists and abide by the principles of minimalism in their day-to-day lives. However, I also think a clear distinction needs to be made between decluttering and minimalism and we need to recognise that decluttering does not necessarily equal minimalism.
Just because a person declutters their wardrobe or house, does not make them a minimalist, especially if they then fill their home with more new stuff after decluttering. That’s definitely not minimalism, that’s just called making space for more consumerism.
Youtubers who do a “minimalist decluttering” video and then follow it with a “haul” video really upset me. Just because you decluttered your oversized and overflowing wardrobe does not make you a minimalist, so don’t use that tag. Just call it a cleaning video because that’s what it is – you’re not minimising, your just cleaning your messy home.
I think we also need to be aware that Minimalism is a trend that only the developed world has the luxury of following. If you are lucky enough to have so much stuff (especially stuff you don’t actually need), that you need to make it a “thing” to declutter and get rid of it, then you are definitely in the top 10% of the wealthiest people on earth.
I can’t imagine a family living in poverty in a third world country would spend their weekends sifting through their belongings and creating mountains of long forgotten items to give away.
I know that my view on Minimalism is becoming a little jaded due to all the people out there that exploit the idea to get more views and likes. I also know that I am one of the luckiest people in the world to be able to call myself a striving minimalist.