Reducing Our Requirements for Material Things (Living with Less “stuff”, more Love)

In blog, family friends, motivation, vlog by editor11Leave a Comment

Minimalism is always something I have been fascinated with since I moved down to Manila, Philippines from China in 2009/2010 for an interesting year of commute between the countries. Moving always makes us realize – why do we need all this stuff.

I’m blessed my wife is on the same page – and while we have just moved into a new apartment here in Shenyang – I have most of my “life possessions” still in Manila (thank you Gauthier for packing up my stuff, and Josh for mailing the keys from Cebu) – and our family’s things are mostly in Thailand – what a crazy time,.

Then I realized, I am not even missing all this stuff.

In the video I go into how I am living with less and the daily routine

And if you’re interested in even more on this topic and thought process, here you go:

Big Businesses Are Scared Of What We’re Thinking Now (and long term)

You know what, after getting stuck, and becoming a home school teacher for my kids, and living as neighbors to my in-laws – something struck me.

It wasn’t as clear until I read this tweet:

“The worst thing that could happen to the economy is if people discover they are actually quite happy right now.”Sahil Lavingia

And then it dawned on me – this is what big corporate companies are so scared about. What if – once the shock of what is happening is over – and the “people” realize – they can LIVE with LESS.

It then makes me think of another quote by Will Smith:

“Too many people spend money they haven’t earned to buy things they don’t want to impress people they don’t like.”

Our generations have been programmed to BUY STUFF. Buy a house, fill it with stuff. Buy the most expensive car you can afford, get on a payment plan. Get on a big mortgage.


But you know what – what if what you have is enough already?

What if you can live in a smaller house.

What if you can have your kids learn online, and you can teach them a bit yourself.

What if you don’t need to go to an expensive collect and go into massive student debt?

What if you don’t need to fly all around the world and put things on your credit card.

What if all you have is already where you are, and who you are.

And you can simply enjoy that.

I don’t think that is “giving up” or “accepting failure” (because that is what my programmed brain is telling me as I type this – oh Mike, you’re giving up) – seriously, what is life really for?

Is life really for showing off to random people on Youtube about the things I bought? To show off fancy cars, and impressing people to then rope them into paying me money to be like me?

While many of us are nervous now, getting laid off, nervous about making payments – what if this happens

People file for bankruptcy. And then they are free.

Makes me think of the Fight Club movie – when they blow up all the credit card companies to reset the debt.

But what if this happens in a more grassroots fashion. I read on Twitter (can’t find it now) someone said lets make national bankruptcy day and all on the same day “average people” all file for bankruptcy.

What will these massive banks due?

Do we need all these things?

The system has programmed us to want to own these things – but we don’t need them.

We don’t have a car here in China. There is a subway.
We don’t have a house, there is a small group of apartments we live in.
We aren’t paying for an expensive school, there are some iPad apps and I take turns with my wife teaching the kids throughout the day.

Why do we need to buy a big house, fill it with “stuff”. Buy an expensive car to park in the garage and use it to impress clients we are successful so that they give us their money. Pay for expensive daycare, expensive primary school, go into university and go into more debt. To get a job we don’t like to buy a house to go into debt to make payments to the house, to buy a car to go into payments for that, and keep paying off our student debt, and our credit card debt to buy all the stuff to fill the house.


Imagine a world where we just live with less. A smaller house, using public transportation, and educating ourselves and our families online and sharing with each other.

Seems like a more reasonable world to me.

Seems more like a world we are meant to live in.

And I seriously think big businesses are scared as heck that humans may start to also agree and stick to the habits that are forming during this pandemic and want to re-open things as soon as possible to “bring back the economy”.

But what is the economy?


Seriously, that seems to me what it is. Buying stuff above our means to make this cycle of business.

What if we don’t need all that.

And what if we can simply live with less.

I guess that is deflation. That is a dying economy? That is a failure of the current business world?

To me, it is what I am currently trying harder and harder to adjust to. My wife seems to be on board, and I hope colleges change as they charge so much money and currently are just online learning like a Youtube video with live sessions added on.

So think about it – sure you may not be happy stuck at home. But what if you start to realize, all that crap you were doing – the rat race – was not worth it. What if you start to adjust to learning online, working online, and paying more attention to your health and those around you.

That is maybe not as sexy and cool, but that seems more holistic.

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