What is valuable to you? Is it your possessions? That big HD TV or the car you drive? Is it your career, with all the responsibilities and rewards that come with it? How about the people in your life such as your parents, spouse, children, and friends?
Recently in a free, local newspaper I saw an article (a regular feature) called “My Style” about the clothes that trendy people in my area are wearing, where they got them, and how much they cost. The woman being profiled in this issue had an outfit that cost over $500!! Five hundred dollars for one outfit that will be out of style in a year. The dress portion of it alone cost $200. Yet I am sure that if you asked that woman what was truly valuable to her, that outfit wouldn’t even be in her top 50 things.
Then why spend $500 dollars on it?
How you determine what is valuable to you is an important concept in minimalism. The minimalist’s concept of valuable includes things that help you grow as a person, that provide satisfaction, that helps others, and that improve the quality of life for you and everyone around you. Value is determined not by the monetary cost of something or the difficulty in obtaining it but rather by whether it has a positive impact on your life or a negative one.
This is how you justify getting rid of expensive clothing, or selling that second car. It is because you have made a determination that the value that an object adds to your life is less than its negative impact (whether it be in stress, time, money, etc.)
Do the things you take the time to buy give you true value? Do the relationships you foster improve both parties involved? Do you waste money on things that ultimately provide you little substance or joy in this journey called life? If so, perhaps you should reconsider your concept of value.