The Practice of One Thing at a Time

By Leo Babauta There’s a Japanese term, “ichigyo-zammai,” that basically means full concentration on a single act. Sunryu Suzuki described this practice in his book, Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind, and said this practice of being fully in the moment with the activity is enlightened activity. “So instead of having some object of worship, we just […]

Filter Out the Noise

By Leo Babauta It can seem like our lives are filled with busyness, noise, distractions, and often meaningless activities. What if we could filter out all that noise, and focus on the meaningful? What if we could find stillness instead of constant distraction? I believe that most of us have that power. In my experience, […]

The Minimalist Way to Declutter

By Leo Babauta One of the best things I’ve done to change my life — along with meditation, exercise, and eating healthier — is to get rid of most of my clutter. I downsized, and became a minimalist. It helped me find space in my life, figure out what was important and focus on that, […]

A Simple Declutter Habit: Leave No Trace

“When you do something you should burn yourself completely, like a good bonfire, leaving no trace of yourself.” ~Shunryu Suzuki By Leo Babauta Zen master Suzuki Roshi spoke about the idea of leaving no trace — doing something with complete presence, and then moving on to the next thing without holding on to previous activities. […]

Fear Is Why We Have Too Much Stuff

By Leo Babauta While we might want to get out from under the mountain of possessions we have, and have all the best intentions of simplifying our lives … the truth is that we continue to have too much stuff. Part of that is laziness, an attitude of “I’ll get to it later” … but […]

Opt Out: A Simplicity Manifesto

By Leo Babauta Our lives become filled, even controlled, by the things we think we need to do. We think we can’t live without these things, but actually, we can. We can opt out. Think about how busy our lives have become. Think about how distracted we’ve become. Think about how many things needlessly pull […]

Rules for Getting Organized & Decluttered

By Leo Babauta What would it take to get your life decluttered and organized? That might be a tall order for many of us, but the truth is, we could do it in bursts and spurts, using a handful of easy-to-follow rules. The other day I wrote about the idea of setting rules instead of […]

Gratitude to Cure the Impulse to Buy More Stuff

By Leo Babauta It’s funny that two days with such opposing spirits come back-to-back in our calendars here in the U.S.: Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. One is about being thankful for what you have, and the other is about getting more of what you don’t have. They aren’t aligned at all. The good news […]

How to Want Very Little

By Leo Babauta There’s a part of today’s consumerist world that drives us to want more, buy more, act on our impulses, hoard, spend to solve our problems, create comfort through shopping, seek thrills through travel, do more, be more. What would happen if we broke from our addiction to wanting and buying more? What […]

Living Lightly with the One-Bag Lifestyle

By Leo Babauta I’ve been on a handful of long trips this year and in recent years, and on all those trips, I lived out of a small bag. I loved living so lightly, but every time I came home, it felt weird: all of a sudden I had about 10x more stuff. It didn’t […]