Who thinks more is better than less? In the words of that adorable child in the TV commercial…

“More is better than less because if there’s more less stuff, then you might want to have some more. WE WANT MORE, WE WANT MORE. If you really like something, you’ll want more of it”. 

The narrator closes with “It’s not complicated.”  But, the truth is, it is complicated. The slogans of More is Better and Bigger is Better, are more (no pun intended, ok maybe small pun intended) than mere words. They have become words wrapped in adorable little sales packages to get us to buy into addictive behavior patterns that fail to provide us with true success.  Addiction is not addition (something that adds benefit to you and your life), it is attrition (a wearing away of strength).

The advertising world is going to keep on selling us the false fix. It’s up to us to avoid taking the bait, and to focus our energy on attaining only those things which will directly deliver us true and lasting success. This requires mastering the art of minimalism.

My personal slogan is “Minimize to Maximize”. I know it may sound counter-intuitive—one must minimize in order to maximize, but that is indeed how selective attention works. It’s having the strength of character to select from many stimuli and to focus on only the one(s) that you want while filtering out non-pertinent and non-essential distractions.

“If you wanna fly, you have to give up the shit that weighs you down.” Toni Morrison

As a success coach, I can’t tell you how often I hear personal stories of those who have attained everything they thought would make them feel secure, happy and fulfilled; only to end up feeling quite the opposite.

It’s my life mission and master goal, not to let that happen to you.

Here are the 5 Keys Elements to Achieving Maximum Success Through Mastering the Art of Mindful Minimalism:

  1. Know Your Master Goal. Become crystal clear on the #1 most important thing in life to you and align all your thoughts, words, and behaviors with honoring it. This keeps you on the direct path to success and prevents the accumulation of non-essentials that divert you away from success.
  2. Know Why You Want What You Want. Uncover the need that you are striving to fulfill within yourself. Make any adjustments to it to ensure it is a healthy driver which will produce only essential add value benefits to you and your life.
  3. Practice the Law of Detachment. We all like nice things, but understand that we are not our things. Things come and go, so practice holding them loosely and use restraint in acquiring too much so as not to become enslaved by them. Self-esteem is acquired by becoming more not by having more.
  4. Live Your Own Dream Not Someone Else’s. Above all else, honor the truth of who you are, what you want to become and what you want to achieve during your lifetime. It is not uncommon that people will consciously or unconsciously go after someone else’s dream, attracting to them, too many people and things which are not essential to the truth of who they are and what they need to become happy and fulfilled.
  5. Adopt A Daily Practice of Avoiding Excess. Just like the TV commercial accurately portrays, our human instinct is to want more of anything that makes us feel good or distracts us from uncomfortable emotions. A conscious daily practice of avoiding excessive thoughts, words, and behaviors that distract us from maintaining a healthy balance of wealth and well-being, one day at a time, will produce a life of riches at all levels of existence.

Avow today, to get rid of, and stop accumulating, all the junk distracting you from achieving great success.

In closing my shocking confession: I’m a recovering “More, I Want More.” Addict. The “I want more syndrome” even began to show up in my scuba diving hobby. I began each dive with having to top my last dive experience. I NEEDED to see a bigger and bigger fish. Each dive had to deliver more of an experience than the last, otherwise I left feeling dissatisfied.  This one day, I just knew, would be the day that I’d get to dive with the biggest fish in the sea—the whale. I intentionally chose a dive where they were located. I had already experienced diving with everything smaller than the whale. This had to be the day. I dove in with great anticipation – nothing. No whale. I kept going. My tank was running low on air. I would have to return back soon to the boat. I pressed on in spite of the dangerously low air level. Shoot! I guess it isn’t going to happen. I felt dejected. Then, all of a sudden, I felt a huge presence fill the water surrounding me. I was like, YES! My next immediate thought was… what’s next after the big whale experience? I hadn’t even spotted the whale before my mind was “I need more and bigger”. Then, it happened. I become surrounded by not one, but an entire school of…drum roll…fluorescent sapphire blue tiny fish! There had to be at least 500 of them. They surrounded my entire body. When I moved left, they swayed left with me. When I swam deeper, they followed. It became a radiant oneness experience that I will never forget. And, in that moment, I realized that it is the small things in life that held the most meaning to me. God had given me a god-shot that day. A reminder to appreciate every single small thing in life, each and every day. The next dive I did, I didn’t see a single fish. I saw, for the very first time since my first dive many years prior, the great beauty of the underwater landscape, and was grateful that it still existed and that I was still alive and well and able to be a small part of its vast universe.