Tell us a little something about yourself & your blog.
I am Darby Raul, a part time budget traveler and a part time Small and Medium Enterprises (SME) Counselor who loves but inconsistently practices Zen philosophy. I love topics concerning metaphysics and anything about the Universe–my inspiration when I impulsively inked my right leg with the minimalist version of the Solar System. I recently started a blog called The Intrepid Minimalist and most of the articles I will be featuring will be about travel and my journey as a minimalist. I would also like to write how it is to be minimalist in my country since minimalism is still a foreign concept in the Philippines. Well people know about the word but a few only knows about the lifestyle and how liberating this practice can be, if applied.
How did you discover Minimalism?
I believe that budget travel is connected with minimalism in a big way. I started travelling on a shoestring budget in 2011 and I realized that people can survive on the road with less material stuff and will be happy with quality experiences and relationships. My Christian background and the Zen Buddhist practices of the countries I visited where I learned that less is more became the foundation of my journey to minimalism.
How have you introduced Minimalism into your life?
Minimalism can be applied with both our physical space and social space. Recently, I radically removed almost 3/4 of my possessions and I feel more free now, and not to mention the freed space in my room, in my office and even on my phone. In terms of social space, I am now keeping a Facebook account with only 100 friends who I really love and who I really care about. I also try to become mindful especially with my inner space.
How has it changed your life for the better?
Again, the free space. Free space means more room for creativity, quality relationships and amazing experiences which money cannot buy.
What do your close friends and family think of your lifestyle? Are they supportive, perplexed or inspired by the changes you’ve made? Do they even know about it?
My mom, who is a maximalist (I love you mom) would always tell me that I should keep my stuff because I will make use of them one way or another, someday. Some of my officemates were laughing at me and even asked me if MINIMALIZING is a word.Some people would also discourage me and would often tell me that I cannot practice minimalism in the Philippines because we do not have enough. I would always think that minimalism is best to practice in a developing country where we need to challenge and question every capitalist-driven advertisements, products and services. Where large companies where we hoard products are also the same companies which exploit the poor and abuse the resources of the country. Honestly, I do not get a lot of support from other people but that’s ok. I will try to work on my blog to inspire people especially those in my community.
Minimalism is more about the internal space than the external. As long as we know what matters, then we will never go wrong even when people find it weird.
What are your hopes for the future and how do you plan to progress the lifestyle? Or are you happy just as you are right now?
I realized that I have to be serious about this concept, which is already a movement in other countries. Aside from the fact that it would free up some digital and physical space, I would also save money in a Country where everything gets expensive everyday. I am happy right now, very very happy because of the air I am breathing and for the people I love.
You can find Darby’s blog here: