November 8, 2017

Minimalism Journey in Europe

Living with less and enjoying more, for six months.

Door closed, bag on the back. I was about to experience the trip I dreamt about for almost two years. Half a year away from home, six months of adventure in Europe and so many countries and cultures to discover with only the stuff in my fifty-liter backpack. Since I was young, I've never been a huge consumer who always wanted the latest state-of-the-art thing. I mean less than the average person. On the contrary, I always loved the idea of having few possessions and this trip clearly opened my eyes toward minimalism.

It's been almost three months since I'm back from what was the most amazing adventure in my life. The aim of the trip was to discover cultures and people while traveling in the simplest way possible: hitchhiking. So when you're leaving for a trip like that, you have to make concessions: you only bring items which will favor you and make you happy. It's a first step into the wonderful world of minimalism.

The minimalist aspect of this journey wasn't limited to possessions. I was doing simple things. From spending a whole evening watching the stars in the sky from a giant fjord in Norway, to drinking tea and talking adventures with travelers in Ukraine. By putting dedication into every single little thing, I could appreciate their true value. Simple doesn't have to mean boring. I was enjoying more than ever writing about my journey on my computer, learning the basics of a new language or taking memorable pictures of unknown landscapes.

Travel is a lapse of time during which you are in a required minimalism state: you are living with fewer things than you ordinarily have and this state makes you understand that you actually don't need more. Now that I'm home, I have this in mind. I want to continue following this way of living with fewer material or immaterial things: clothes, papers, apps, emails... Because for me, they now belong to a clutter that I don't want to be part of. I'm not attracted anymore by blindly accumulating things without any purpose.

If you're really motivated to change your life, sharpen how you perceive things and try to apply minimalism on a daily basis, you can and it's a highly rewarding task! I'm progressively seeing the true meaning of things and each step towards minimalism brings a feeling of happiness and freedom in my life.

Above all, I'm understanding that you can not only enjoy living with few things, but you should also put the emphasis on what really matters: human values. Minimalism is about reducing things, not feelings.

Published by Quentin Bellanger in Travel

Photography by Luke Pamer

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