K is for Kindred Spirits: A-Z of Simple Living

This January, we're taking an in-depth look at the why and how of simplicity with the A-Z of Simple Living. If you want to make 2015 the year you create a simpler, slower life, why not join us?

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Creating a life of simplicity is not hard. But it is complicated.

And being surrounded by people who don't understand, people who don't agree or people who are outright derisive of the idea can make it more complicated.

As someone who is a passionate advocate for living with less, I don't often talk about decluttering and minimalism offline.

Partly because I don't think I have all the answers, nor the ego to assume my way is the best and only way to live. I also want to avoid being that person who talks incessantly about their new interest, passion or job and who you can't wait to escape from at a dinner party. You know that person?

That being said, making big, important changes to your life is much, much easier when you have access to a support network of like-minded people.

You have people to bounce ideas off, you learn from those who have gone before you, you impart your experiences on people following behind. You are exposed to different views, opposing perspectives and both the length and breadth of experience that each person has to offer.

The beauty of our connected, digital world is that we can meet like-minded people from all around the globe. There are over 5,000 of these like-minded folks in my Facebook group and we are from all corners of this blue planet. There we share our struggles with simplifying, our victories, our questions and our experiences, and lives are richer for it.

Having people who 'get you' can help a great deal as you move through the process of simplifying your home and life, so if you're needing support or encouragement please come and join us.

My Kindred Spirits

Today, I want you to meet my kindred spirits. I'm going to introduce you to a group of writers who help keep me inspired, motivated and aiming higher on my simple living journey. Some I know personally and others I admire from afar.

Leo Babauta – Zen Habits

The spiritual godfather of simplicity, Leo is a one-man world-changer. He writes beautifully, he motivates and he inspires. He is so generous with his experiences, both in living a very simple, beautiful life with his wife and six kids, as well as sharing how he harnessed his passion to become a super-successful entrepreneur.

Blog | About | Recently: The Art of Being my Dad

Joshua Becker – Becoming Minimalist

Another passionate family man, Joshua inspires me to embrace not only living with less, but the joys and struggles that brings. He is fully aware of the challenges this lifestyle can bring our way, but his family's story proves just how worthwhile a change it is.

As a suburban dad and husband, his journey towards simple living is so accessible – it's the story of the everyman – but his spirit and kindness have elevated that to something much greater. I am always, always inspired after reading his blog.

Blog | About | Recently: 9 Important Strategies for Raising Kids in a World of Technology

Rachel Jonat – The Minimalist Mom

The first of my kindred spirits who is raising a young family, I love the perspective Rachel brings in her approach to a simple life. Having young kids in the house changes your ideas of simplicity and minimalism – whether you like it or not.

Rachel and her husband have given up so much of their stuff so they can experience the world more fully. She has “two pairs of jeans, no car, no debt, more time and less stress.” She also made a sea-change to the Isle of Man and frequently travels with her family.

Blog |About | Recently: 20 Minute Clutter Challenge – Task #1

Courtney Carver – Be More With Less

One of the first simple living blogs I found, Courtney gives not only a woman's perspective on living with less, but a mindful, intelligent, chic and health-conscious woman. Her writing is thought-provoking and poignant, but also funny and sweet. Her minimalist fashion program – Project333 – is a must-read for anyone looking to simplify their wardrobes to the (fashionable) essentials.

Blog | About | Recently: Minimalism is Everything

Tsh Oxenreider – The Art of Simple

Tsh and her family of 5 are currently travelling the world. And while her thoughtful and practical posts on simplicity have seen me make dozens of massive changes to our own family life, it's her philosophy of travel, exploration and intention that make her a true kindred spirit. Plus, her and her husband feel that a passport is one of the greatest gifts parents can share with their children. Which is something I can really get behind.

Blog | About | Recently: Coffee in my Soul

Joshua Fields Milburn and Ryan Nicodemus – The Minimalists

Late last year I had the pleasure of meeting these guys in Sydney, and was so struck by their warmth and passion for simplicity. They write essays – some short, some long – about living a simpler life with less stuff. What's more, they back it up with their actions everyday and they do it while maintaining some very impressive hair.

Blog | About | Recently: That Was Fun

 

Kindred spirits don't have to share exactly the same perspective as you. (Where's the fun in that?) But there will be a true connection between the way you and they see the world. You will feel like they are speaking to you. And if you're really lucky, they may just help change your life.

Do you have kindred spirits? Those who understand you, help lift you up and inspire you?

 

 

 

10 Responses to K is for Kindred Spirits: A-Z of Simple Living

  1. I’m a big fan of Rachel Meeks and her blog: smallnotebook.org! A great list of inspiring bloggers, Brooke, some folks on here I need to check out. :)

    • Brooke McAlary says:

      Wow! Thanks for the heads-up on Rachel’s blog, Robin! I hadn’t seen it before and I enjoyed wandering through her archives. There’s some great stuff there.

  2. Thanks for mentioning me Brooke. It was a great pleasure talking to you.

  3. tricia says:

    Hi Brooke. I struggle to maintain online connections with kindred spirits – because I try and restrict the amount of time I spend online (seems contradictory for a blogger) – but I have met some wonderful real-life kindred spirits through my blog. I find ‘real life’ connections easier to maintain. I look around now at my close friends – and many of them I doubt I would have discovered if it wasn’t for the blog. So I’m very thankful the online world has helped me be surrounded by kindred spirits in the real world.

    Thanks for sharing Theminimalistas -its new to me and I like the look of it.

    • Brooke McAlary says:

      It’s tricky, isn’t it Tricia? The online world is so wonderful for connecting, up to a point. And then it becomes counter-productive. I think it sounds like you’re striking a really good balance though.

      Jill of The Minimalistas is great. I hope you enjoy her blog!

  4. Mopsa says:

    Thanks for the list of inspiring bloggers and blogs! I already know some of them, and I’ll be visiting the others.
    One blog I also find very inspiring is Tammy Strobel’s Rowdy Kittens!

    • Brooke McAlary says:

      Of course! I’m only relatively new to Tammy’s blog, but it is wonderful. And her Tiny Home change is all kinds of inspiring. Thanks, Mopsa!!

  5. joanna says:

    I follow the ones you listed plus Tammy strobel of rowdy kittens. She’s so kind and I enjoy her words.

  6. Em says:

    Most of my spirits in this cause are worldwide bloggers like you :) My mentor (of course without him knowing) is mainly Leo, but plenty others.

    Actually at the beggining of the year I’ve realized that the word “minimalism” doesn’t quite give me the feeling anymore (neither does decluttering, I’ve read so much about it that I became really bored) and I became much more thrilled about the “simple life” lenses which is why I moved more here recently :D It might be all about the same thing pretty much, but at the same time, it isn’t. It’s so great to have bloggers like you to follow and to get inspired by :)

    I don’t have a lot of real life people like this, though. In my country it’s not such a thing, I’d say. Whilst online minimalism experienced a huge boom and so many people are all about it, changing their lives and stuff, most of the people I live surrounded by didn’t really noticed or get influenced by it. There’s few czech fellow bloggers but mostly people don’t really write much about it – because there’s no need anyway, someone already said most of what you want to say about it, so we mostly just share the interesting posts and approaches and we write about other things.

    In real life I have few people who are quite open-minded to it when they hear it from me or read my posts about it. But noone is really on the same way, getting so excited about changing their life. I think they’re very conservative in general and minimalism would make them think and realize and they are very scared of that.

    But on the other hand, there are people who are living quite simply but they don’t call it minimalism or anyhow. They don’t consider it a “thing” or a lifestyle, they just do some things simply, it comes from their heart and they don’t feel like rushing it and getting too inspired.

    My bf is quite on the same way but not crazy about the blog posts on the toppic. He’s more doer than reader or writer :) He always searches for the best kind of gadget to have multiple functions, to be the top of the best, to be for the best price, to have the easiest design… and he doesn’t even realize he’s doing something minimalistic.

    So in the end when I want to talk about the benefits, I go to my fellow bloggers who know why I am so crazy about it :) I actually started with Ev Bogue I think. But that’s ages ago and I had so many inspiring idols since then. It’s a great world we live in, so many great authors who walked the path before you and are great in giving an advice on how to do it yourself.

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