“Everything that remains” by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, aka The Minimalists is the first book I picked up on minimalism. As I mentioned previously, I found this book after watching their documentary.
The book took a unique narrative: part real-life, part crafted fiction. It took a bit for me to find the groove, but once I got there it was a quick read as I couldn’t put it down!
Excitement vs. Passion
The book digs in on this subject, and it totally resonated with me. Don’t expect “excitement” from your passion. “It’s easy to get briefly excited about something – an idea, a project, a potential promotion – and think that means we’re passionate about it too. But this sensation of excitement is different from the type of deep passion that drives and fulfills people long term. Excitement comes and goes; it wanes when times get hard. True passion, however, arises after you’re put in the long hours necessary.”
“Passion isn’t followed, it’s cultivated”
What do you do?
I echo his distaste for this little courtesy question. Though I’ve always disliked the question, I’ve never really stopped to pin down why. He NAILS it:
What we’re actually asking:
“How do you earn a paycheck? How much money do you make? What is your socioeconomic status? And based on that status, where do I fall on the socioeconomic ladder compared to you? Am I a rung above you? Below you? How should I judge you? Are you even worth my time?”
No wonder I loathe this question! It’s amazing to me that such a probing and deeply personal question has become so mundane and acceptable to ask strangers moments after an introduction…
What are you priorities?
Though you may declare certain priorities, where are you actually spending the minutes and hours in your day? Those are are TRUE priorities. Really illuminating!
The last highlight gleaned from the book was a series of questions he suggests you ask before making a purchase. Instead of looking at a purchase as an exchange of goods/services for a swipe of plastic, think of it’s value compared to the freedom you are exchanges to EARN those dollars.
“Am I going to get more value from this thing I am going to purchase, or am I going to get more value from my freedom.”