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The Minimalists Podcast

The Minimalists are Emmy-nominated Netflix stars and New York Times–bestselling authors Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus. Alongside cohost T.K. Coleman, they help millions of people live meaningful lives with less.
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Now displaying: 2021
Dec 28, 2021

Joshua and Ryan are joined by counselor, podcaster, and author Ian Morgan Cron to discuss identity clutter and the outdated stories people tell themselves, and they answer the following questions:

How do you start rewriting your story when you feel overwhelmed and insecure about who you are and who you want to be? (02:23)

What does the acronym “SOAR” represent? (06:27)

What is “act as-if”? (07:38)

How do you discover your true identity after traumatically losing your societal identities? (10:20)

What is the difference between a role and an identity? (11:41)

How can the Enneagram help us discover ourselves? (13:41)

How do you define “personality”? (14:31)

What is the role of self-awareness in personality and in identity? (16:29)

How do beliefs become problematic? (23:46)

How do I find peace with who I am? (28:51)

How do you define “shame”? (30:10)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Dec 21, 2021

Joshua and Ryan discuss the pros and cons of hustle culture, and they answer the following questions:

Do some people claim they’re busy to be envied for being in demand? (01:01)

What is the difference between “hurry” and “hustle”? (05:46)

How do you define “productive”? (06:45)

What is the fatal flaw of hustle culture? (08:51)

How can we break free of hustle culture? (13:31)

How do you appropriately address burnout with yourself or an employer before it reaches the point of no return? (17:07)

How do I set appropriate boundaries in my profession? (19:45)

After leaving an extraordinarily stressful career, how do I resist the temptation to take on another one for “success” and wealth? (25:53)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Dec 14, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about what they’ve learned, how they’ve grown, and in what ways they’ve subtracted since they started The Minimalists eleven years ago, and they answer the following questions:

How has your understanding of, and approach toward, minimalism developed over the last eleven years? (00:00)

Why does minimalism seem radical? (05:34)

How do we address our issue with clinging? (06:44)

What is the most important lesson you’ve learned about consumerism? (10:13)

What is the “god-shaped hole”? (12:04)

Based on your eleven years of experience in minimalism, what advice do you have for those of us starting on our minimalism journey at an older age? (16:38)

Is deprivation helpful? (24:03)

If you had the power to make everyone a minimalist, would you do it? (28:53)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support



Dec 7, 2021

Joshua and Ryan speak with Amanda Montell, author of Cultish, about what makes a cult a cult, and they answer the following questions:

Who decides whether a cult is a cult? (00:00)

Are cults strictly negative? (02:08)

Is CrossFit a cult? (04:33)

How do otherwise reasonable people fall susceptible to cults? (11:58)

What are the characteristics of a cult? (13:55)

What is the “thought-terminating cliche”? (15:47)

What are the “exit costs” of cults? (21:29)

What are some red flags to look for regarding cults? (22:25)

Can you explain the US-centric terms being used regarding cults? (32:08)

Why does it seem the US is replete with cults? (32:35)

How do cults start? (34:30)

What is the “cult of consumerism”? (36:43)

How do cult members not see how it’s hurting them when it’s so obvious to everyone else? (39:37)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Nov 30, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about giving gifts, getting gifts, and sometimes refusing gifts as a minimalist during Christmastime, and they answer the following questions:

How do I address the guilt I feel when I don’t get a Christmas gift for someone that expected one? (01:13)

Can gift-giving be a love language? (21:49)

What are some clutter-free gift ideas? (25:46)

What are the three types of fun? (28:02)

What is the minimalist approach to Christmas stockings? (32:51)

What are some good charities for children? (36:50)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Nov 23, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about expired food, expired medications, expired possessions, and expired daily habits, and they answer the following questions:

How can we appropriately manage the expiration dates of everything in our lives? (00:00)

Is the expiration date listed on food the last day it can be used? (06:57)

How do I appropriately let go of perishable items that no longer serve me, especially when there was a degree of expense involved? (13:45)

What do you consider clutter? (15:21)

What can we do about expired sources of content, such as a blog with dated viewpoints, narratives, and opinions? (17:42)

How do we determine when we’ve entered a new season in life and it’s time to let go of hobbies, friendships, and dreams of past seasons? (21:41)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Nov 16, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about so-called luxury items—desiring them, purchasing them, clinging to them, understanding them, and letting go of them—and they answer the following questions:

How do you define “luxury item”? (01:10)

How do we differentiate between luxury, elegance, and trendy? (06:04)

As my fiance and I are creating our wedding registry, how do we ensure we don’t fall into the trap of exploiting the kindness of others for luxury items that will just fill the areas we just decluttered? (11:09)

What is “expensive pain”? (13:23)

What is an “alternative registry”? (15:44)

Is crowdsourcing a reasonable way to fund a honeymoon? (17:07)

Why do some pursue luxury instead of living within their means? (20:29)

What is “low-grade misery”? (36:02)

What is the ultimate luxury? (36:49)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Nov 9, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about earning a living doing work that matters with career expert, author, and Ramsey personality Ken Coleman, and they answer the following questions:

Does one have to have a “purpose” at work? (02:16)

What three elements make up one’s purpose? (03:13)

Must a purpose be a lofty pursuit? (09:33)

What do you recommend as the best options for making money on the road for those of us that want to travel and see the world? (16:00)

How do I balance pursuing a purpose with the responsibilities and obligations of being a parent and a spouse? (24:01)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Nov 2, 2021

Joshua and Ryan discuss The Minimalists’ Spontaneous Combustion Rule as it applies to material possessions, relationships, and homes, and they answer the following questions:

What is the Spontaneous Combustion Rule? (01:00)

How do we determine when it’s appropriate to let go of friendships, and how do we address the aftermath of loneliness when there are no new friendships to fill the void? (04:12)

What are the three types of relationships? (07:39)

How do we address the overwhelm we feel from others’ stuff when we’re living in an environment that’s not our own? (13:42)

How do we know if the desire to move to a new place that may “fit us better” is a genuine feeling and not just escapism? (24:30)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Oct 26, 2021

Joshua and Ryan are joined by Ryan’s wife, Mariah, on the occasion of his 40th birthday, and they talk about the wisdom that accompanies midlife maturity, as well as answer the following questions:

When do maturity, wisdom, and knowledge best align? (00:00)

What is Ryan’s favorite dinner? (11:50)

How have your needs in a romantic partnership changed as you move toward your 40s? (13:05)

What is “whataboutism”? (17:15)

How has responding instead of reacting helped your relationship? (18:21)

Are Ryan and Mariah always in agreement regarding their minimalist practices; and, if not, how do they find compromise with one another? (22:58)

How do you find equilibrium in your relationship when an individual is on their minimalist journey but their partner is not? (32:13)

What is the “hedonic treadmill”? (46:13)

What guests have you had at your tour stops? (47:41)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Oct 19, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about inner conflict, self-doubt, and self-hatred with author, speaker, and attorney Mel Robbins, and they answer the following questions:

How do I rebuild my relationship with myself? (02:06)

What is the most important relationship in our life? (02:59)

What moment led to the High Five Habit? (08:42)

Why do most mantras not work? (15:22)

How did you keep from blaming yourselves and beating yourselves up for the failure of your marriages, and how did you restore your confidence in starting new relationships afterward? (16:54)

What does a high five represent? (19:39)

Can thinking about yourself negatively actually benefit you positively? (26:06)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Oct 12, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about finding something more compelling than material possessions, and they answer the following questions:

Why is Salt Lake City one of Joshua’s favorite cities? (00:00)

How do I explain to my children the importance of curating their toys in terms they’ll understand? (03:14)

How do I let go of a relationship I didn’t end? (09:59)

Why am I relentlessly searching for the next thing that will improve my life, and how do I better channel that energy? (17:56)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Oct 5, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about trading in our materialistic clinging for transcendent freedom with author, podcaster, and comedian Lisa Lampanelli, and they answer the following questions:

How do you define “humor”? (00:00)

What is the “United States of Avoidance”? (08:26)

When life changes your path, how do you stop clinging to the hope you once had? (14:20)

How do we accept the death of a dream? (15:33)

What do you mean by “daring to suck”? (17:45)

Is it helpful to simply treat our passions as hobbies until they pay the bills? (18:25)

How did Lisa get her start in comedy? (20:18)

When a loved one has passed, how do I honor their final wishes as executor and appropriately distribute the possessions they clung to when they did not leave specific instructions for doing so? (22:46)

How do you stop clinging to the security of a job simply because it pays well? (29:56)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Sep 28, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about calm, serenity, and the sound of simplicity with musician Andrew Belle, and they answer the following questions:

How do we find serenity in the echoes of our decluttered spaces? (00:00)

If you’re living a life that aligns with your values, why would it be necessary to take a vacation from it to find solace and silence? (13:39)

Is there any evidence that overconsumption of podcasts or other informative audio is linked to anxiety? (21:08)

How do we move closer to access and further from excess? (24:18)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Sep 21, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about resisting the incessant tug of consumerism while striving to simplify, and they answer the following questions:

How do we overcome our shopping addiction? (00:00)

What are the three prime indicators of compulsive buying? (04:00)

What is consumerism? (06:45)

When does something become an addiction? (09:39)

Why do people have shopping addictions? (19:17)

When creating a capsule wardrobe and running up against challenges regarding durability, should we buy more clothes at once or purchase clothes more often? (19:35)

What is Project 333? (21:33)

How do I adjust my shopping habits so they better align with my minimalist practices? (26:01)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Sep 14, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about removing the excess to expose the everyday beauty that’s all around us with author, podcaster, and pastor Erwin Raphael McManus, and they answer the following questions:

What exactly is “beauty”? (00:00)

Can beauty help us find peace? (05:01)

How do we discover and incorporate singular beautiful accents and items throughout our homes while maintaining a simple, minimalist style? (11:55)

What is the value of negative space? (14:21)

How do we find the beauty inside ourselves, and then be content with it? (18:42)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Sep 7, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about the folly of the self-help industry’s focus on exhausting positivity—on trying to convince us that we can out-eat, out-learn, and out-perform our humanness—with author, podcaster, and professor Kate Bowler, and they answer the following questions:

What is the “gospel of hustle”? (00:00)

What are the signs that positivity has become toxic for us as individuals, and what are the signs that our well-intentioned positive vibes are becoming toxic to others? (06:58)

Where did the ‘good vibes only’ orthodoxy originate? (07:21)

Why does complaining seem to encourage camaraderie? (10:03)

What is the problem with the language of positivity? (10:43)

What is “horizon work”? (12:23)

What is “choice poor”? (12:38)

How do we address those that weaponize perspectives, such as toxic positivity, to bully us into accepting and adopting their way of thinking as our own; for example, when people that disapprove of minimalism call minimalists “privileged”? (17:11)

How do you define “elitism”? (21:45)

What is “prudential wisdom”? (23:39)

Where did the notion come from that being positive is the cure for everything, the path for everyone, the solution to whatever life throws at you—what is wrong with embracing sadness, contemplation, grief, anxiety? (31:35)

What is “limited agency”? (33:13)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Aug 31, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about how to avoid recluttering our lives with new possessions, burdens, and obligations once we’ve excised our excess, and they answer the following questions:

What is “recluttering”? (00:00)

How do we address recluttering with loved ones and roommates who seem to see our clean spaces as places to dump their stuff that doesn’t have a home? (07:55)

How do we ensure the items we bring back into our homes after decluttering don’t become recluttering? (18:11)

How do I figure out my ‘why’ for recluttering? (32:15)

What’s problematic about having options? (35:02)

How do you define “consumerism”? (35:39)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Aug 24, 2021

Joshua and Ryan discuss our escalating advice epidemic as our society swells with scores of well-meaning people advising other people on what they are supposed to do, and they answer the following questions:

What are ‘shoulds’? (00:00)

What possesses some people to insist on giving others unsolicited advice? (03:13)

How can we provide appropriate advice and/or guidance to loved ones to alter behaviors that are impacting us negatively? (17:46)

How do our expectations complicate things? (21:14)

How do we critically evaluate all the ‘shoulds’ out there and take what works for each of us? (23:34)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Aug 17, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about all the digital clutter on our computers, phones, tablets, and other devices taking up space on our hard drives and in our minds, and they answer the following questions:

What are the benefits of not having digital clutter taking up space in your mind? (00:00)

What is the Diderot effect? (04:48)

What do you define as ‘digital clutter’? (10:41)

Where do we start in addressing digital clutter to ensure we stay focused and motivated and not get overwhelmed with all of it? (13:31)

As an avid gamer, how do I ensure I don’t let my enthusiasm and passion for gaming turn into clutter with all of the games and consoles available, and how do I ensure it doesn’t consume me to the detriment of my relationships? (21:00)

How about a basic overview of how to manage it all: emails, documents, photos? (30:18)

How can overwhelm actually help us? (33:17)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Aug 10, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about the perniciousness of compulsive decluttering (aka obsessive-compulsive spartanism) on the occasion of their 300th episode, and they answer the following questions:

What is spartanism? (00:00)

Hoarding, spartanism, ad nauseum—must we diagnose everything? (06:06)

How do we recognize and respect the challenges of others? (06:59)

How could letting go of everything be a bad thing? (11:16)

How do we ensure our decluttering doesn’t trigger other compulsive behaviors; for instance, the compulsion to constantly check our phones for notifications when we’re trying to sell what we decluttered? (11:46)

What is the “art of noticing”? (17:38)

When does minimalism turn into compulsive decluttering or obsessive-compulsive spartanism—what signs do we look for? (19:40)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Aug 3, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about “summer simplifying,” and they answer the following questions:

Which moniker won in your audience poll—“simpletons” or “minimizers”? (00:00)

Where do you start when your entire home needs decluttering? (06:04)

What is the most important thing to do to get started? (10:04)

How do we get our children to participate in decluttering? (13:27)

How do I break my emotional and sentimental attachment to my collection of books, and how do I appropriately curate my collection and recycle the books I don’t keep? (14:07)

What is the Enneagram? (22:19)

What do we do with items that have a sentimental attachment? (25:51)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Jul 27, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about the best options for therapy when you’re feeling sad, grieving, depressed, anxious, or overwhelmed with author, podcaster, and psychotherapist Lori Gottlieb, and they answer the following questions:

When is the appropriate time to talk to a therapist? (00:00)

What is “idiot compassion” compared to “wise compassion”? (02:53)

What is self-sabotage, and how can we identify and address its manifestation in us? (04:03)

What is the most important phase of change? (05:45)

What is the most challenging part of change? (07:09)

Why should someone schedule a session with a therapist? (08:48)

What key power can therapy give us? (09:49)

What do we do when cost is an impediment to mental healthcare? (11:26)

What are the downsides of trying to help others change? (14:42)

What mantras, self-talk, meditations, et cetera, have helped keep you focused, centered, and positive when addressing significant life challenges? (18:15)

In their lives, to whom do most people talk the most? (19:17)

How do we give ourselves self-compassion? (22:06)

How do we get past childhood traumas and disappointments? (23:42)

What is “forced forgiveness”? (25:24)

Must we forgive to move on? (26:15)

How do we handle pride appropriately? (27:13)

Why does there seem to be a stigma against mental health in older generations, and, more specifically, how can we get our parents to talk about their feelings and vulnerabilities? (29:35)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Jul 20, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about the minimalism rules that have helped simplify their lives, and they answer the following questions:

How valuable are rules? (00:00)

How important are boundaries? (04:56)

Once I only have my essential items, how do I keep them from wearing out quickly? (18:48)

How is minimalism not a destination? (19:47)

What is our language problem? (20:19)

How effective is it to reverse clothes hangers to minimize a wardrobe? (27:17)

Is it helpful to restrict the amount of clothes hangers to create an appropriate wardrobe? (28:20)

How do you develop and maintain the discipline needed to stick to your minimalism rules or other habits you're trying to establish? (30:26)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

Jul 13, 2021

Joshua and Ryan talk about healing our relationships with stuff, truth, self, values, money, creativity, and people with podcaster and Director of Entrepreneurial Education for FEE, T.K. Coleman, and they answer the following questions:

What gave you the inspiration for Love People, Use Things? (00:00)

Do we learn more from those that have been redeemed, or from those that have led “perfect” lives? (08:51)

How did the line blur so much between private lives and public lives? (10:31)

How do I reconcile with my minimalist values when I must trash items I no longer use that can’t be donated, recycled, or upcycled? (13:48)

What is the true cost of things?  (14:43)

How do I justify to my minimalist self that it’s okay to have numerous accoutrements for several hobbies that bring me joy? (21:00)

What separates minimalism from dogmatism? (23:57)

How do I rejuvenate my creativity when I’m overwhelmed by burnout? (36:04)

How do we avoid falling into maintenance mode as creatives? (40:31)

Detailed show notes: minimalists.com/podcast

Support The Minimalists: minimalists.com/support

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