What can we gain from substituting "less is more" with "more is more"?
I have always been living my life as if I was on a tight deadline (we all quite literally are), rushing to go, see and do things. On one of the recent trips, I was on a bus soaking up the views and the colors of a foreign city, feeling quite tired but content after a full weekend when I realized minimalism might not be for me.
I used to pride myself on being a minimalist. I don't think I ever really was. Having moved around, I was not into hoarding stuff mainly because I was too lazy to carry them to the next destination. However, since I have settled into one apartment for longer, plants, cups, books, pictures and postcards have started occupying more and more space, filling every corner with dear stories, memories, and faces.
Recently, as a reaction to minimalism, the maximalist movement has been gaining more traction. Instagram fashion influencers are showing us how to be classy while mismatching patterns and interior designers are playfully mixing choices of furniture and exuberant colors. White sterile walls are exchanged for funky wallpapers and black t-shirts are revived with an array of accessories.
Growing up in a filled house, my family collected everything from cutlery to old radios, naturally, I went through a phase of wanting to get rid of everything. I watched a movie about two guys becoming minimalists and was very inspired to give up most of my things away (the inspiration lasted one day). I played around with the idea of owning only five outfits and very few worldly possessions. Except I could never really do it. I love having shelves full of books, one pattern too many in my wardrobe, and anarchy of colors in my room.
“Maximalism is the art of more-is-more; layered patterning, highly saturated colors, ample accessories and art, and a real sense of playfulness and bold gestures”
We hear a lot about the value of this kind of slow living: saying no to things, sitting and watching through the window, and taking time to do nothing. Well, I suck at that (probably also the reason why it's so hard for me to meditate). By mixing contrasting experiences and a fast-paced approach, I lean towards maximalism ideals. I want to feel in life the way I do when entering a room filled with colors, patterns, and accessories – playful and joyful.
This might mean I will keep trying to do too many things at once. I will probably say too many yeses. I will try to be in too many places at the same time. It might be too much and might be tiring. But it will also be full of bold colors and it will be exciting.