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Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus help over 20 million people live meaningful lives with less through their website, books, podcast, and documentary. The Minimalists have been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe, Forbes, TIME, ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, CBC, and NPR.

Podcast 050 | Impulses

In this episode of The Minimalists Podcast, Joshua & Ryan discuss our addiction to possessions, shopping, social media, entertainment, and more, and they answer the following questions:

  • When I go to a store to return a purchase thanks to buyer’s remorse, how do I ensure I don’t succumb to my inner compulsive shopper where I wind up exchanging an item instead of returning it?
  • I recognize my binge watching of Netflix and YouTube makes me unproductive, antisocial, and unfulfilled, but how do I stop doing it?
  • As a small business owner, how do I help my customers avoid compulsory consumption without damaging the source of my income?



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Minimal Maxims

Joshua & Ryan’s pithy, sharable, less-than-140-character answers to the lightning-round questions:

  • Ryan on eschewing social media and calling people instead: “Social media is a tool. Used properly, it can add a tremendous amount of value to our lives.”
  • Joshua on eschewing social media and calling people instead: “Avoid ‘keeping up.’ Focus instead on giving and getting value.”
  • Ryan on our desire to create collections: “Hunting and gathering is in our DNA. Collecting is a side effect, and it’s becoming an antiquated form of survival in most of the modern world.”
  • Joshua on our desire to create collections: “Collecting is well-planned hoarding. Thus, we often form collections to cover up our hoard.”
  • Ryan on doing nothing: “When I snowboard, I always take a few moments to ‘just be on the mountain.’”
  • Joshua on doing nothing: “Sometimes nothing counts as something.”
  • Ryan on spending an inordinate amount of time playing video games: “Habits are hard to break. Others’ habits are even harder to break.”
  • Joshua on spending an inordinate amount of time playing video games: “You can’t help people who don’t want help.”
  • Ryan on minimizing social media use: “If you want a break from social media, turn it off—the power button is right there.”
  • Joshua on minimizing social media use: “Use social media intentionally: unfollow and unfriend the people who aren’t adding value, and work hard to create value yourself.”

Mentioned in This Episode

This episode was produced by Shawn Harding. Our theme music was written and performed by Peter Doran. Our podcasts are completely free, so if you found value in this episode, and you’d like to help us produce more, please consider donating a dollar to The Minimalists. Your donations help keep this podcast 100% advertisement-free (because advertisements suck).

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