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The Minimalists

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus write about living a meaningful life with less stuff for 2 million readers. As featured on: CBS, BBC, NPR, Forbes, The Atlantic, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, and National Post. They live in Missoula, Montana.

10/10 Material Possessions Theory

Material Possessions Essay

How important is the stuff in your life?

Your material possessions—those things you’ve worked so hard for, slaving 40, 50, 60 hours a week to acquire—how much value do they actually add to your life?

We bet it’s less than you realize.

Here’s an exercise for you. Take a moment, write down your 10 most expensive material possessions from the last decade. Things like your car, your house, your jewelry, your furniture, and any other material possessions you own or have owned in the last ten years. The big ticket items.

Next to that list, make another top 10 list: 10 things that add the most value to your life. This list might include experiences like catching a sunset with a loved one, watching your kid play baseball, eating dinner with your parents, etc.

Be honest with yourself when you’re making these lists. It’s likely that both lists share zero things in common.

This short essay was based on a concept in Geoffrey Miller’s Spent.

You can listen to Joshua and Ryan’s recent podcast on Smart Passive Income with Pat Flynn here: Standing Out in an Already Crowded Niche.