Best Books On Minimalist Living & DecoratingThis post contains affiliate links; if you buy something we get a small commission at no extra cost to you
Living with less stuff is quickly becoming the norm for good reason. It saves money, space, and ultimately frees up your energy to distance from physical possessions.
But it can be difficult to transition into the minimalist lifestyle. Thankfully there are tons of books written on this very topic and I’ve cataloged the best ones in this post.
You’ll find guides on decorating, working, and living the minimalist lifestyle. There is no “correct” way to live minimally so it’ll look different for everyone. But these books can help you understand the concepts and learn to apply them to your everyday life.
One of the richest books on this topic is Living Minimally by Hannah Robbins. It’s also one of the newer books in this post and it looks past home decor explaining minimalism as a lifestyle.
This book will help you understand the movement behind minimalism and why so many people are going this route. It’s not just about decluttering your life, but rather focusing more on self improvement over things.
Rather than buying a new HD television set maybe you’ll learn more by spending that money on a trip. Or spending it on tickets to a concert with friends.
There is no strict formula for a minimalist lifestyle but there are patterns you should follow. And in this book Hannah lays it all out in an easy-to-read manner that anyone could follow.
I absolutely recommend this as a clean intro to the minimalist lifestyle and what it’s really all about.
This short book covers a lot of ground from the basics of minimalism to a step-by-step process you can follow to get there.
Minimalist Living: A Minimalist Guide To A Non-Materialistic Life is only 60 pages long but it’s one of the best reads you’ll ever have. It talks about clutter, materialism, money, meditation, and the fundamental ideologies behind a minimalist lifestyle.
The goal of reading this book is to reconsider how you live and what you could do to make changes that would directly impact your life. Are you happy with your current lifestyle? What do you think minimalism could offer you?
Since this is such a short book you can get through it in a few hours. It’s the best quick intro to minimalism for people who have busy schedules and aren’t 100% committed to this ideology, yet still find themselves curious to learn more.
Decluttering for Joy, Health, and Creativity
Another book with a similar title as the one above is Genevieve Parker Hill’s Minimalist Living: Decluttering for Joy, Health, and Creativity.
Genevieve is an expert on clutter and cleanliness frequently contributing to Elle Canada. In this book she talks about minimalist decorating and how the process can radically change your home life.
As you remove things from your life you may feel empty or just plain bored.
Minimalists look to fill that time with travel, hobbies, and experiences with friends that can never be taken away. This ideology is pervasive in every chapter as you look into how you live and how you could live.
You won’t find a lot of philosophical talk in this book. It’s very much a practical guide to cleaning out clutter, eating better, exercising more, and ultimately living with less baggage. A great read if you’re willing to take some action to improve your life.
As a simple and fun read this book will suck you in fast. Miss Minimalist curates a series of essays discussing about the ups and downs of switching to a minimalist lifestyle.
There is rarely one linear path that someone can take to achieve anything. We each have our own habits and behaviors that need to be corrected if we want to see change. And this book offers some real perspective on that issue with a push away from materialism.
It’s a cheap buy so you can get this for your Kindle and go to town fast. I think the writing style is rather unique and super fun, very much like a colloquial conversation with a friendly stranger.
Ultimately the goal of this book is to help you downsize your clutter and reduce the amount of excess stuff you have lying around. This will free up physical space in your home, but also mental space in your head and the way you think about living life.
The More Of Less
The More Of Less makes a solid case for removing things from your home to live a happier life. This isn’t a quick fix book and it’s not some guru preaching that minimalism is the end-all be-all solution.
Author Joshua Becker has been living this lifestyle for almost a decade and he’s the founder of Becoming Minimalist. That site has a lot of great tips but this book offers a lot more with a clear writing style.
Through the process of cleaning out your home you’ll realize that minimalism is about more than just removing stuff. It’s a complete lifestyle shift that’ll radically change how you view consumption and material possessions.
At first you’ll learn what minimalism is and how it can go far beyond your home. Later in the book you’ll learn to build your own cleaning schedule and find a happy medium between owning things without letting those things own you.
Joshua’s writing style almost feels like poetry and this is one book that’ll leave you thirsting for a lifestyle empty of material and full of happiness.
The Joy of Less
It’s common for homeowners to feel stressed or anxious when cleaning out large rooms. Especially if stuff has accumulated for 10+ years, it can feel like going into a disaster zone.
The Joy of Less can help ease your fears by shifting your perspective on clutter. The early chapters offer some pep talks to get you excited for cleaning and the practice of decluttering your life.
Later chapters delve into the process of moving room by room to pinpoint problem areas and get them cleaned up. Along the way you’ll learn which possessions truly matter to you and why they matter so much.
Everyone has their own threshold for owning property and this book doesn’t assume you’re chasing a nomad monkish lifestyle.
Instead you’ll be forced to think about why you have the things you do, how many of those things you really want, and how many things you really need to live happily.
Minimalism: How Less Can Be More
Aydan Riley has been a practicing minimalist for over a decade and he shares all his knowledge in the book Minimalism: How Less Can Be More.
Everyone wants more time to focus on their life, their passions, and their family. But our actions don’t always align with our goals. This is a problem of lifestyle and behaviors that develop over years of repetition.
In this book Aydan helps you break the cycle with the cold shower of minimalism. You’ll see first-hand how much time and space you’re wasting with things that just don’t add much benefit to your life.
It’s a very short read with only 44 pages but it’ll get you inspired and on the right path to a minimalist lifestyle.
I recommend this book for people on the fence about minimalism who want to understand what it’s all about and how it can affect their day-to-day behaviors.
I wouldn’t call this book a strict “minimalist” title. However it touches upon the ideas of self-control and a fixed schedule that forces you to move with focus at every hour of the day.
Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less is a 270-page book focused on task management and lifestyle management. The author Greg McKeown teaches this essentialist attitude at fortune 500 companies like Google, Apple, and Facebook.
His approach is simple: make the time to do the things that matter most. Systematic discipline forces you to organize your tasks into a schedule that you can follow and repeat to achieve a minimalist hassle-free lifestyle.
This is not about removing things from your home or freeing up more time. Instead this book is like a manual to help audit your time and build more discipline.
I recommend this more for working professionals or people who have crazy work schedules that seem to take over their lives. But it can really help anyone who wants to improve their schedule and time management abilities.
Minimalist Living Guide
Short, clear, and practical best describe the Minimalist Living Guide by Christopher Todd.
It’s a 32 page book with short tips and schedules you can apply to your lifestyle every day. Todd forces you to look at every part of your life from meals to budgets, clothes, and even your relationships.
Are certain people dragging you down to a poorer way of life? Or could you be spending more time on certain activities that would actually make you happier? Only you can answer these questions and the answers can make a tremendous impact.
If you’re looking for a detailed guide then this book probably won’t cut it.
However for a super small manual on minimalism this book offers a quick way to get moving and make changes fast. Really one of the better books for people who hate reading and prefer to get moving.
Everything That Remains
Everything That Remains is a detailed memoir written by Joshua Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus, better known as The Minimalists.
These guys have an amazing story and they’ve been traveling around the world sharing their advice for years. They learned the power of minimalism back in 2010. Shortly after making those changes they created their own website to share advice online.
This led to a whirlwind of support and now this duo has practically pioneered the minimalist movement of the 21st century. This book isn’t so much a self-help guide, but rather a detailed recollection of their journey and how far they’ve come with minimalism.
It’ll put into perspective how much you’re really giving up and how much you’re getting in return.
Making the shift into a minimalist lifestyle is not easy. But it can leave a lasting impression that stays with you for life and radically changes how you view the world.
And if any story can help you see the value of minimalism it’s the story these two guys share.
I’ve included a lot of reductionist books in this post because I think they’re crucial to a minimalist mindset. Few practicing minimalists furnish every room in their house to the rafters.
10-Minute Declutter: The Stress-Free Habit for Simplifying Your Home is a lengthy read totaling 180 pages long. While it does claim to be a 10-minute process it’s really a lifelong process that’ll help you understand why minimalism can have such an impact on your home life.
This book looks more into systems and best practices you can apply daily. Each chapter offers step-by-step instructions you can follow to build your attitude towards decluttering and make a space that feels like home.
It also discusses the raw emotions many people feel while cleaning out their home or apartment.
But if you can push through the greed, anxiety, fear, and attachment you’ll come out the other side a much stronger person.
Easy Minimalist Living
Easy Minimalist Living is a much more hands-on book that centers around a 30 day cleaning challenge.
The author Jennifer Nicole found herself looking for a way to simplify her life while raising her children. This book is the result of her journey and it shows her experience with cleaning and remaking a totally new home life.
You’ll learn all about the best organization tactics for a large home and how to redecorate your space for minimalism. This is especially common in Japanese traditions and other east asian decorating styles like feng shui.
If you’re looking for a practical minimalist cleanup book then Jennifer’s writing will ring true the whole way.
150 Best Minimalist House Ideas
At a whopping 500+ pages this idea book is perhaps the largest resource you’ll ever find on minimalist design.
It’s not much of a how-to book although you can copy many of these ideas on your own. 150 Best Minimalist House Ideas is a photo book cataloging the journey of many other decorators over the years.
Photos cover every room of the house including kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, living rooms, and smaller spaces like garages. Some chapters explain these ideas in depth with written guides you can follow to mimic on your own.
If you’ve never seen a minimalist home before then this book is a powerful introduction. It is by far one of the best resources for gathering ideas to decorate and redesign your entire living space.
This can also make a beautiful coffee table book if you’re big on minimalism & interior design.
Clutterfree With Kids
This book is for all the parents out there struggling to keep their sanity raising young kids. Clutterfree With Kids is a 200-page lifesaving resource on how to maintain a clutter free home with messy children.
You’ll learn how to build new habits and keep them ingrained in your kids. This way your home stays clean while you spend your time elsewhere. The book splits up into three large sections:
- Change Your Thinking
- Discover New Habits
- Free Your Life
Some later chapters get into hardships like being a one-income family and raising kids on your own. Nobody’s situation is the same and you can never compare yourself to other people.
After reading this book you’ll have a much better skillset to maintain a minimalist lifestyle and breed that knowledge into your children. This can reduce the chaos in your home life and help your kids see the value of a minimalist mindset.
But even if you don’t have kids there are tons of other books in this post that can radically change your lifestyle.
Take another look over these titles and see if any jump out. Minimalism is a radical lifestyle change but if you can adapt you’ll notice it’s much more freeing and peaceful in the long run.