The Rapidian

Schuler Books to host author discussion with The Minimalists

Doing more with less for a meaningful life: The Minimalists to explain how.
Ryan Nicodemus & Joshua Fields Millburn, The Minimalists

Ryan Nicodemus & Joshua Fields Millburn, The Minimalists /Photo by Adam Dressler

The Minimalists Everything That Remains Tour — Grand Rapids

Author Talk and Book Signing with The Minimalists, Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus.

With Special Guest Musicians, The Bergamont.

 

Admission: Free

 

Schuler Books and Music

2660 28th Street SE

Grand Rapids, MI 49512

http://www.schulerbooks.com/event/joshua-fields-milburn-ryan-nicodemus-special-guests-bergamont-28th-street

 
Ryan Nicodemus & Joshua Fields Millburn

Ryan Nicodemus & Joshua Fields Millburn /Photo by Spyr Media

Everything That Remains 2nd Edition Cover

Everything That Remains 2nd Edition Cover /design by SPYR Media

Ever feel overwhelmed by the stuff you have? 

If you are anything like me, then you have a pile of clothes sitting next to the laundy machine waiting to be washed. There is a layer of dust on my kickbacks that should be cleaned before friends arrive tonight. My apparent commitment to help the creative community has led to several unframed prints and canvases stacking up on my desk, not the way the artists intended to have their work preserved I assume but I can't seem to find the time to put them up as that would entail digging around in the kitchen junk drawer for hanging supplies. Speaking of my kitchen, I have an extra, seldom used, Crock-Pot taking up space in the bottom cabinet shelf. I have no idea why I need a spare Crock-Pot. I hardly use the other one.

How is all this stuff helping me?!

Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, aka The Minimalists, authors of the popular blog The Minimalists and the best-selling book, “Everything That Remains: A Memoir by The Minimalists,” asked themselves this same question and in answering it, stumbled across a remarkably simple lifestyle called Minimalism.

Minimalism, as defined by Millburn and Nicodemus, is a lifestyle that helps people question what things add value to their lives. Minimalist living doesn’t necessarily mean living like a pauper; rather it’s a deliberate choice to find meaning and value outside of material possessions.

Stopping in at Schuler Books and Music in Grand Rapids on July 10, Millburn and Nicodemus will bring their wit and candor as they describe their enlightening realization that living the dream doesn't necessarily entail The American Dream.

After quickly climbing the corporate ladder, 20-something Millburn found himself at what should be the height of his career with a bunch of stuff - a big house, cars, nice furniture, flashy clothes. But with the death of his mother and a pending divorce, none of these possessions helped him cope with the loss and change in his life. Meanwhile, Milburn's equally successful grade-school friend, Nicodemus, found himself wrestling with the same questions after being let go from a cushy, high-paying job.

By intentionally paring down, both discovered more time and energy to explore passions, hobbies and building relationships. Millburn found solace in writing, a lifelong interest, making it a new career. Nicodemus turned his passion to help others into being a personal mentor and trainer. The material items they have chosen to keep in their life exist to add beauty, value and create dialog with others, giving them a greater sense of purpose, wellness and health. Moreover, in reducing consumption and discarding unused items, The Minimalists realized there was less to clean, less to repair, less to pay for and even less to worry about in their life.

Less to clean? I'm in. 

Presented in tandem, The Minimalists’ writings have a conversational feel, exploring what it means to pare down and reboot in order to reclaim life. Although their commitment to minimalism looks different than what I can do right now – Grand Rapids has great public transportation and bike paths but I can’t sell my car just yet - both authors are quick to assure the reader that a commitment to redefining material items is unique to each person. What a single guy in his twenties can minimize is different than what a family can scale back on. Even so, their astute musings and hilarious observations of living with less have reshaped and refocused my own outlook about relationships, spirituality, careers and friendships as it relates to the things I own.

After reading the book, I donated six full bags of clothing, an unused bookcase and several seldom used kitchen appliances (goodbye Crock-Pot). Now I save the money I would've spent on cleaning and the space I spent storing those garments. I come home from work and spend less time rooting around in my kitchen cabinets so my evenings are spent walking my dogs or going for a run, both of which are more rewarding activities for my wellbeing. Oh, and with the time I saved not taking care of another random thing, I wrote my first an article for The Rapidian. Boom.

Getting started is as simple as asking yourself one question: How might your life be better if you owned fewer material possessions?”

Meet The Minimalists and hear their journey from more to less as they traverse the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland and Australia for their "Everything That Remains" Book Tour. They stop in Grand Rapids at Schuler Books & Music, 2660 28th Street SE Grand Rapids, on July 10 at 7 p.m. Admission is free.

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