Genealogist as a Minimalist - What does it mean?

Updated: Oct 18, 2020

My journey into adopting a minimalist lifestyle has given me a life of simplicity and clarity that I never imagined I would find. I can see life dreams now with more clarity; I understand my personal values and strive to live by them everyday; and my daily life has been simplified by surrounding myself with things that bring value and beauty into my life. It's the first time in a long time since my husband's death that I feel at peace and look forward to seeing what the future brings my way.

I have family heirlooms that bring value and beauty into my life. They are items that I look at and use everyday. I don't keep things just because of who owned them. I do have a cherry wood chest filled with my husband's things that I am holding onto from my youngest son. Which he will get one day. Other than that I use everything else. Keeping things that aren't bring value into my life is just something that I would end up needing to dust or stored in a box. Those things would bring more value to other people's life by letting them have it or by donating it to a museum were it could bring joy to others.

I have still have areas in my life that I'm learning to simplify and fit into my minimalist lifestyle. My schedule has become more freeing. I have learned to be more careful about saying yes to things. Working on finishing up current projects before taking on more has been a struggle for me, but I'm already seeing the benefits limiting my number of projects I take on. I don't feel as overwhelmed as before.

While I have been working on steps to simplify my genealogy into my minimalist lifestyle, I have found that I have actually been learning more about my ancestors. I have focused on what I have currently from past research trips to tackle the pile of papers. I have been digitizing photos and documents that have freed up much clutter in my life. My digital frame was brought so much joy to me because I can see all the photos, including my ancestors all the time. They constantly remind me of the people who came before me. I have chosen not go on any genealogy trips for 2020. I want to spend this year focusing on what I have learned and use that to organize my genealogy and work on researching. This way when it comes time for me to start traveling in a few years I will be ready with more clarity of where I am going and who I am researching.

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