Minimalism, Nomadism, Frugality and Being Cheap
I just want to have a post that is clear on what being a minimalist is and isn’t and what the other categories are.
I feel like people hear “minimalist” and they immediately associate that with someone who lives on an island with only a backpack, with absolutely nothing else in the world and no permanent address.
This is not the case.
You live with as few as possible items as long as you cover everything you need and want.
If you aren’t into furniture (like us) you don’t have much of it.
However, I am really into clothes and jewellery, so I have a lot in this area.
You want to be able to move and travel with just a backpack. You aren’t tied down anywhere.
You tend to not have a permanent place of any kind. More than likely, you’re also a minimalist because you’re moving all the time.
You love to travel and can stay for long periods of time in certain cities without ever needing to go back “home”. The concept of “home” fluctuates for you.
You aren’t cheap, you’re just spending your money where you want to spend it, and you prioritize other things like your retirement fund or food bill over stuff that doesn’t matter to you, like having a fancy new car for instance.
A lot of frugal people tend to also be minimalists in some regard.
You are straight up cheap as in you refuse to pay the price for anything you buy. You always buy the cheapest version of whatever is possible, you try and avoid spending your money as much as you can, but if it was someone else paying, you’d be totally on board with going all out.
People who are cheap are either very minimalist and don’t have anything because they don’t buy anything, or they are very maximalist because they buy everything in bulk, on sale.
You won’t however, buy anything of a high quality that you think should be cheaper, like a laptop because the cheapest one of the market is only $500 and you can’t understand why a Mac would be $2000.
None of the groups are mutually exclusive where they don’t share tendencies with each other, but it doesn’t mean that if you are a minimalist you also have to be a nomad.
Or if you’re cheap, you’re also a nomad.
For me, I’m a little of all the 4 categories.
Some more than most.
I am cheap for certain things, For example, I really hate paying fees and I refuse to pay extra on a menu for changes for an ingredient I don’t like.
I am frugal for things like a car because when I needed to buy a car, I didn’t want to buy a super cheap beater car at $500 that stank like wet dog or cigarettes, but I also didn’t want to buy a brand new one either. I wanted to maximize my money as much as possible.
I am a nomad in the sense that with what we have currently, and the fact that we’re renting, we could up and move pretty easily, in about a day or two even with a baby.
If we buy a condo this will disappear because we will not be nomads as easily any more but that doesn’t change the fact that we’d still be minimalists.
I am a minimalist because I spend most of my money on where I get the most pleasure: food and clothes (aside from family). I am also currently NOT buying toys and little baby-specific things for Baby Bun if I can avoid it because he’s going to outgrow all of that and it’d be a waste of money (frugal / cheap).
That said, when we bought him a baby chair, we bought a $400 Stokke baby chair because it’s a chair for life — he will sit on it as a baby, a toddler, a child, a teenager and even as an adult (it’s convertible).
WHAT DO YOU THINK?