The above record player was designed by Dieter Rams, whose style of minimalism has become iconic (not to mention, a style that heavily influenced Apple). The concept behind this brand of minimalism applies not only to making hardware, but to our lives: if something doesn’t have a purpose, get rid of it.
We only have so much time in our lives. Wasting it on pointless things is a quick way to wind up middle-aged and regretting life. That’s not to say you can’t have fun or enjoy things outside of work, but, as Rams explains (in the context of appliance manufacturing, but the ideas transfer well), the concepts of minimalism are to accomplish the most with as little as possible:
Provide a clear function: “Every manufactured item sends out signals to the mind or emotions… But the most important factor is whether the item can communicate its use.”
Remove all distractions: “One of the most significant design principles is to omit the unimportant in order to emphasise the important.”
Applying it to your own life, how much time do you spend investing in projects at work that have no bearing on your ability to learn or advance? It’s OK to get a job outside your intended field, but if you’re spending 60 hours a week on a job you want to quit, there are better uses of your time. If what you’re doing now isn’t getting you towards your goals, if there’s no purpose left to what you’re spending your time on, move on and replace it with something that is.
Dieter Rams: If It Doesn’t Serve a Purpose, Get Rid of It. [99u]
Photo by Nick Wade.