Black Minimalists: Farai Harreld
Learn about Black Minimalists team member, Farai Harreld's minimalist journey.
When and why did you start your minimalist journey?
I started my minimalism journey late in 2015 while pregnant with my daughter and looking for freedom from clutter, as I tried to make room for her in my home and life.
What lessons have you learned since going minimalist?
Firstly, freedom from "stuff" feels amazing. It's an elixir for life, it moisturizes your hair, pads your bank account, and does your nails. I kid. Minimalism has taught me how to be at peace with what I have, to be grateful, mindful, and to not get caught in the hum drum of life.
What are your goals in living simply?
To make conscious, mindful decisions, to be aware of the impact I have on this earth, and to enjoy life and live in the moment.
Has minimalism impacted other areas of your life?
Minimalism sent the hippie in me into high gear. I have always been interested in what my brother calls "that hippie Greenpeace crap". But other than the occasional donation and recycling bin, I never really did my part. Minimalism made me conscious of the effect that consumerism has had on this planet. It made me address my spending habits. It made me address emotional clutter and start seeing a therapist. It's been a snowball of the best things really.
What surprises or challenges have you encountered?
When I discovered this great thing called minimalism, I was excited and wanted to share it with people. The challenge was finding people that looked like me engaging in these conversations. I am passionate about the representation of POC and wanted to find people who looked like me to talk about this stuff with. Which is why I was so excited to find Black Minimalists.
What mindset changes have you experienced?
For the longest time I lived paycheck to paycheck, being able to make frivolous purchases no matter how cheap felt good. Breaking that thought process was difficult. Learning to be happy and grateful with what I had was also really important. We talk about the benefits of minimalism, but it also saves you money in the long haul because you make more meaningful decisions.
What advice do you have for someone interested in simplifying their life?
Don't get caught up in an aesthetic, or having exactly 52 items in your possession. Think about why you are attracted to the idea of minimalism. What worked for me was planning the areas in my life I wanted to address and tackling them one by one.
What does being a black minimalist mean to you?
It means we are out here doing the damn thing and you should too! I've heard black folk tell me "that's some white people ish" or that minimalism is the fetishization of poverty. To me, its freedom from clutter in my home, my life, and my head.
Where can we learn more about you?