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Resources for Living the Simple Life

When you decide to start living simply, whether you’re moving into a tiny house or just getting rid of old clothing and excess stuff, you don’t have to do so alone. There are dozens of excellent resources on simple living out there — everything from awesome podcasts and books, to documentaries on Netflix, to minimalist-minded blogs.

Below, we’ve rounded up several of our favorite resources on organization, minimalism, tiny house living, and embracing the value of simplicity.

Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things

You’ve likely heard of Minimalism, a documentary that took the world by storm upon its release in 2016. Now available on Netflix (as well as DVD, Google Play, and Amazon, among other outlets), Minimalism is an examination of how people from various walks of life are living with less.

Created by Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, or “The Minimalists” as they’re known, the documentary features the pair embarking on a book tour — to promote their newest book, Everything That Remains — in addition to snapshots from other people who live simply.

You’ll be both fascinated and inspired when you check out this awesome doc – in fact, we’re betting that you start a closet purge as soon as you’re finished watching.

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing

Speaking of minimalist-centric resources that have swept the nation, is there anyone left on Planet Earth that hasn’t heard of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up? This book was, and still is, all the rage — in fact, your mom, grandma, and second cousins in Ohio are all probably “Marie Kondo-ing” as we speak!

If you haven’t yet read this oracle of organization, now’s the time to do so. Published in 2016, The Life-Changing Magic was a #1 New York Times best-seller, for good reason. Japanese cleaning consultant Marie Kondo’s tips for decluttering and simplifying your home are invaluable.

Simplify Your Life: 100 Ways to Slow Down and Enjoy the Things That Really Matter

This is another international bestseller that’s positively chock-full of foolproof tips on how to declutter, get organized, and thereby improve the quality of your life.

Elaine St. James is a former realtor turned “simple liver” who’s been promoting downsizing and conscious consumerism for decades now, and she’s written over 20 books on these topics and more. Simplify Your Life contains practical advice that truly works, and it’s another must-read for anyone who’s curious about simple living and the art of minimalism.

PAD Tiny Houses

If you’ve ever considered building or buying a tiny house, then it’s highly likely you’ve come across PAD. Short for Portland Alternative Dwellings, PAD is a resource center for people interested in going tiny.

The company was founded in 2008 by Dee Williams and Katy Anderson, and is now considered to be one of the leaders of the tiny house industry.

Williams was one of the first people to build a tiny home on wheels, and her memoir The Big Tiny chronicles this journey. This is another must-read!

According to their website, PAD’s primary focus is on “expanding people’s ideas about what ‘home’ might be” and encouraging tiny house residents to “ask themselves what they really needed out of a home to be happy.” Talk about a worthwhile mission!

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Tiny House Design

Following the motto of “Dream Big, Design Tiny,” this website is replete with tons of actual tiny house plans, scale models, and other fantastic ideas on how to create the best tiny house possible.

Are you considering constructing your own tiny home one day? If so, Tiny House Design should be one of your go-to resources right from the start. Some of the tiny house plans are free to download, while others are available to purchase.

In addition to design plans and models, the site also has super helpful sets of instructions on everything from using Google SketchUp to building your first-ever composting toilet. Not to mention all the great photos of real tiny homes.

The Simple Sophisticate Podcast

The Simple Sophisticate is a fabulous podcast about the value of quality over quantity, and sensible living over over-consumption.

Every week, founder Shannon Ables — who also runs a similar-minded lifestyle blog called The Simply Luxurious Life — shares awesome and inspiring tips for a simpler existence and living a “refined life on an everyday income.”

There are a ton of great podcasts available, but this is easily one of my favorites. You have to give this one a listen. If you need some serious inspiration to kick-start your own minimalist journey, then you’ll love The Simple Sophisticate podcast.

Becoming Minimalist

If you’re just starting to explore minimalism and living simply, Becoming Minimalist is another invaluable resource.

Joshua Becker and his small family of three began donating and recycling tons of their possessions, in an effort to spend less time cleaning out the garage and more quality time together.

Becoming Minimalist is packed with practical tips that anyone can follow, in-depth articles, and links to other important minimalist-centric works. Becker has also written three books on the pleasures of minimalism and simple living.

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