In a world where success is measured by material possessions, having fewer possessions is countercultural.
But over the years, I’ve found motivation to own less in the many studies that support that decision.
Culture and marketers encourage us to buy more, but those who study the impact of excess possessions on our lives encourage us to own less.
If you find yourself needing a little extra motivation to own less and embrace a more minimalist lifestyle, we encourage you to come back to this article. .
Whoever you are, there’s something here to encourage you.
10 scientific studies that encourage you to own less
1. Fewer possessions reduce stress
Clutter makes us feel stressed. As you concentrate, you can feel the weight of your extra belongings on your shoulders.
Research confirms our emotions. research We confirm that possessions can make us feel stressed, anxious and depressed. Clutter causes chemical reactions in our bodies.
Even more fascinating is the According to a study published in 2011people who value their possessions tend to experience higher levels of stress and depression. Not necessarily because of their quantity, but just because of the value they place on them.
Minimalism not only helps us declutter our homes, but it can also reframe the value we place in our physical possessions.
2. Fewer possessions make you happier
The modern growth of minimalism as a lifestyle is still relatively new. However, all the research and evidence collected so far has shown a consistent positive relationship between spontaneous simplicity and happiness.
This 2021 paper (Minimalism, Spontaneous Simplicity, and Happiness: A Systematic Review of the Empirical Literature) reviewed 23 empirical studies to reach their conclusions.
3. Fewer possessions improve relationships
In 2021, the study was published in the forefront of psychology by three researchers in China. Their findings showed that people who were less materialistic and focused on experiences rather than material possessions had more positive social interactions and stronger social bonds.
Having fewer possessions paves the way for stronger relationships with others.
4. Possessing less can help you sleep better
sleep researcher They found that a messy bedroom was associated with poor sleep quality. A physically cluttered environment can take longer to fall asleep and experience restful sleep.
As a result, this study suggests that removing extra possessions from your bedroom may lead to a better night’s rest.
5. Fewer possessions increase productivity
Research by scientists at the Neuroscience Institute at Princeton University found that workplace clutter can have a negative impact on productivity.
Study participants who worked in cluttered environments performed less well on tasks requiring concentration and problem-solving than those who worked in clean, uncluttered spaces.
6. Carrying less can save you money
Recent researchwill be released only in March 2023 and explores the impact of minimalist practices on consumer well-being and financial well-being and finds that “adopting a minimalist lifestyle can save significant money.” I found
According to this research, there are three reasons for this: 2) Adopt a prudent and thoughtful attitude when managing consumption. 3) You can avoid burdening yourself with debt by balancing your spending according to your budget limits.
I’ve been writing about minimalism for 14 years now… I’m really excited to see more and more research being done on the effects of minimalism on individuals and society as a whole.
7. Possessing less can make you happier
According to research A graduate of the University of Texas McCombs School of Business, he says experiences tend to bring more happiness than material possessions. The researchers concluded that people were happier with experiential purchases than with material purchases, regardless of when they measured their well-being—before, during, or after consumption.
In fact, after studying the data, researchers said: It will likely lead to greater happiness. “
8. Having less possessions improves physical health
In a 2016 study entitled “confusion, chaos, overconsumptionParticipants in chaotic kitchen conditions consumed more cookies and calories than participants in a standard kitchen. Consumed.
On the other hand, a well-organized environment can lead to healthier habits and personal choices. increased exercise.
9. Fewer possessions improve memory
With more physical possessions around us, more visual noise in our minds and lives.This messy visual distraction increases overload and even reduce our working memory.
10. Having fewer possessions makes children play better.
2017 Research from the University of Toledo An important observation for us as parents.
This is important for us to recognize. Adding toys all the time is not the best way to help your child grow and develop.
And based on all the research above, constantly adding new possessions to your home for yourself isn’t the best way to grow, develop, and live your most meaningful life.