by Ashley Logsdon

13 Minimalist Tips For Families

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What exactly IS minimalism?

What minimalist tips would give you the confidence to do this with your family? Well, first, we have to address what "minimalism" really is. 

Minimalism, by definition, isn't quite what one would think. How would you pass on a minimalist quiz? It actually references 1950s sculpture painting and avant-garde music.  But even in these, it was the simplicity that mattered. 

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minimalist woman

In episode 17 of the Mama Says Namaste Podcast, I started a new series - The Minimalist To-Do List.  Now when we think minimalist, what really comes to mind?  Most likely not the art forms. We scour the web for a guide to minimalism, how to start minimalism, how to begin living a minimalist lifestyle, and more. 

Joshua and Ryan of "The Minimalists" lay it out well here:

The Minimalists

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus 

Minimalism is a tool that can assist you in finding freedom. Freedom from fear. Freedom from worry. Freedom from overwhelm. Freedom from guilt. Freedom from depression. Freedom from the trappings of the consumer culture we’ve built our lives around. Real freedom.

That doesn’t mean there’s anything inherently wrong with owning material possessions. Today’s problem seems to be the meaning we assign to our stuff: we tend to give too much meaning to our things, often forsaking our health, our relationships, our passions, our personal growth, and our desire to contribute beyond ourselves. Want to own a car or a house? Great, have at it! Want to raise a family and have a career? If these things are important to you, then that’s wonderful. Minimalism simply allows you to make these decisions more consciously, more deliberately.

I love this, and their concise definition below, as the real meaning of minimalism as we know it today.  It's about so much more than just living in an Ikea house. It's a brilliant minimalist approach to all  of life. 

Minimalist Tips

Ikea Isn't Everything...

When you say the word "minimalist", people immediately think Ikea (or maybe that's just me). We think of a stark white room, all full of feng shui and lush sheepskin rugs, a trickling fountain and candles.  There is greenery and open space and a feeling of zen.  Basically, go to Ikea.  It's clean, simplistic, and gorgeous in it's sparseness.  Everything has a purpose.  I joke about how when Nathan and I got married, it was Cracker Barrel meets Ikea due to my love of holding on to everything.  Now, we're not quite Ikea, but a bit more World Market than Cracker Barrel. The minimalism trend has hit more than just one store. 

I love color - and my bohemian style definitely craves variety overload.  But what I've found is my decorating style is so not what minimalism is really about.  And that's why I can do a whole series just on this topic.  It's deep.  It's rich.  And it is so much the essence of what is important to me, and what the "Mama Says Namaste" mission is.

Mama Says Namaste Mission:

To help families write their story with intention; creating awareness, grace and connection where each individual thrives. Not "one day", but today. 

13 Minimalist Tips to get started:

Let me lay down the essentials of what minimalism is for me.

  1. If you are looking for a true minimalist lifestyle definition, you have to start with your family vision. Because this isn't just about being a minimalist woman or man - this is about your family. If you haven't yet, start with your family vision
  2. It's about not taking in everything - just because it's on sale or super cool. Be careful about simply accumulating. Seek out what really brings joy, and cherish the one
  3. Let go. Say no. A minimalist approach goes far beyond your home and really addresses your mindset. We have to flow. There are times it's better to simply say no, or be flexible with changes in plans. Allow for some white space in your life. 
  4. When you are searching for minimalist decluttering tips, recognize it's not always an either/or. Look for "and" options so you don't feel like you are sacrificing.
  5. Create an environment that caters to all your senses - not just emptiness.
  6. Minimalist girl. Minimalist woman. Minimalist boy. Minimalist man. These can sometimes be a label that makes you feel isolated. It's okay to be a misfit. Actually, it can be quite nice. Minimalism is way more than decluttering - check out this article on How To Become A Minimalist and Love It.
  7. Simplifying your life may allow for more peace than you realized...maybe even so much so that you would (gasp) turn down free babysitting
  8. Don't just focus on the outside. Simplify the inside. Pay attention to what you even put in your body. You are what you eat.
  9. Create boundaries in your relationships, and surround yourself with people who challenge you, support you, and lift you up. Foster your organic relationships and start reducing the toxicity in your life.
  10. Clear out the overwhelming things. We can have an immaculate house and still be weighted down simply by "Clutter of the Head". How many obligations and "to-do's" do you succumb to?  How often are you a victim of circumstance or reacting to the chaos around you? Don't let the burden of overwhelm take you down. 
  11. Prioritize your family. Not your things. Make your family your VIPs.
  12. Create a minimalist to-do list. This is your ultimate guide to minimalism. (And just so happens to be that fabulous pop-up you see on this page - go ahead - grab it now!)
  13. Redefine what "home" means to you. This was the first podcast episode in my Minimalism series. Here is what my daughter Clara said when I asked her a while back:
minimalist lifestyle blog
Some favorite minimalist items in our home:

Here are three "minimalist" items we love in our home - to cut back on all the scrap paper, all the kitchen gadgets, and to connect with the earth more. 

“Home is where you fill an invisible river of love, filled with adventures and salamanders, and even though it’s stormy, you feel safe.  
The lightening is like a fire with marshmallows and the thunder is like singing in the rain." 
Clara Logsdon, Age 9

Here are just a few more podcast episodes for powerful minimalist tips. All of Season 3 tackles clearing the clutter from your home, your head, and your heart.

So Your Child Still Isn’t Reading – Helping Late Readers (Episode 317)
Do you have a late reader in your family? Or do you feel like you're constantly fighting an uphill battle[...]
Cultivating Mindfulness By 54321 (Episode 316)
I'm back with Juliet today discussing ways to calm down, center yourself, and engage the senses. We break down the[...]
Why You May Need A Financial Therapist – with Celia Roberts Hughes (Episode 315)
Have you ever heard of a financial therapist? My childhood friend Celia Roberts Hughes is with me for this episode[...]
Does Awareness and Quiet Have A Place In Your Home? (Episode 314)
Have you fostered awareness and enjoyed the quiet in your home, or is it a fend-for-yourself-borderline-chaos environment? Most likely it's[...]
Head Clutter and The Chaos of Overwhelm
How can you be calm when there is so much clutter in your head? In this episode, we talk about the[...]
Dealing With Heavy Emotions (Episode 68)
Dealing with heavy emotions can be hard, yet carrying that weight around can limit our light in so many ways.[...]

 I'm looking forward to this journey with you.  Let's dig deep into minimalism in a way that allows you - and your family - to feel lighter, free, and focused on what you hold most dear.

If you're ready for a minimalism deep-dive, connect with me for some serious action steps to move from chaos to intention. 

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extreme minimalism
Minimalism with kids


About the author, Ashley Logsdon


Ashley Logsdon is a Family and Personality Styles Coach and Lifelong Learner. She and her husband Nathan are RVing the States and unschooling their 3 girls. Her mission is to shift the mindsets of families from reaction to intention, and guide them in creating the family they love coming home to. Looking deeper than the surface, we assess the strengths, triggers, and simplifying your lifestyle so you truly recognize how the uniqueness in each of us strengthens all of us.

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  1. Oh wow – that’s so great, Heather! Man, WordPress is the way to go for an easy start AND being stable enough to grow bigger if you want as well. I love Thrive Architect as a plugin that makes it pretty for you, and I highly encourage youtube videos as a great way to learn every step of the process! If you want to email me directly through the contact form, I can also give you a name of my go-to tech guy to help you with some of the more confusing aspects, like setting up your domain, finding a server, etc. 🙂 Canada was great, and we’re in our 48th state now! Celebrating two years on the road next month. 🙂

  2. Ashley,
    My name is Heather and we met in Vermont, at an apple cider press a year ago. We were from the islands in vermont, sold everything and now live in Guam.
    Our short conversation together inspired me to start my own blog. I need help! I am overwhelmed by the idea… and didnt know if you could provide a few pointers. I wanted it to be a private blog for family back at home, but expand it as i become more comfortable. I hope all is well… how was canada?

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