The challenge: Try minimalism for a change. Pack light!
Minimalism is the new black. Minimalist houses, minimalist furniture, minimalist fashion. It has become quite popular now and it’s spreading fast to different aspects of our life. So if you’re following the trend, you should probably know travelers are the ultimate and original minimalists.
Fit your whole life in a suitcase
I’ve moved abroad for six-month to year-long periods of time and I know what it’s like to fit your whole life in a backpack or a suitcase. The first time I faced the empty suitcase, I was terrified. I thought I was supposed to take everything with me, from the basic essentials to the smallest useless details. Of course, my behavior towards packing has completely changed over the years. With time you get better and better at it.
I realized I could live with the bare minimum of shoes and clothes and I often end up buying what I need at the destination. Toiletries nowadays are common and affordable anywhere. Technology such as chargers, adaptors and headphones is also available at airports and big stations.
Packing light as therapy
Packing and traveling light actually teaches you a fundamental lesson about life. It’s like some kind of therapy. Just like cleaning and tidying, packing aims to help you organize and cut back on your life, right down to the most important possessions.
Do you really need 5 pairs of shoes for a 2-week vacation? Are you going to wear all 5 beach dresses for real? Or you’ll be walking around in your comfortable shorts and flip flops all the time…
Minimalism will show you what is valuable in life. In the end, it’s not how groomed or fashionable you looked at the beach, but how much fun you had. Packing light will show you that anything you don’t need to bring is already inside you!
What’s more, traveling light gives you freedom. You can move easily from place to place without rolling heavy wheels and causing confusion, noise or disturbance. And whenever you feel like moving, you’ll be ready to hit the next amazing place in no time. The less you carry while travelling, the less you have to worry and care about your possessions.
A few golden rules for packing light:
- If you can buy it when you arrive for the same price or even cheaper, don’t bring it.
- If you are not going to use it every day, don’t bring it or buy it there.
- If you don’t like an object, if it doesn’t make you happy or smile – don’t bring it. For example – I always take my favorite t-shirt, my favorite dress, my favorite pyjamas. This way I know I’m going to wear them for sure.
- Pack clothes and necessities to last a week. You’ll definitely find a laundry service in the meantime.
- Be smart – pack items that’ll serve more than one purpose. Universal body soap you can use as shampoo as well. Leggings could work as pyjamas, workout or leisure wear.
- Don’t pack more than two of the same kind – you’ll be fine with two shirts, two pairs of pants, two dresses.
The most valuable lesson traveling light has taught me so far is to depend and rely more on myself than on things. I have become smarter, more creative and resourceful, stronger and more independent.
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