On Friday I took a look at the phonebook in my mobile phone. To my own surprise, there are only 153 contacts.
My old self (the-not-so-minimalist-me) would have cringed for having only that many friends. But right now I am still a happy guy.
There are a few benefits that I get – and you can too – from having such a small social circle.
1. Less expenses. Having a minimalist social circle means you spend less time going out entertaining yourself and your friends.
2. More energy to work on personal projects. Interacting and socialising take a lot of energy. By reducing socialising time, you will have more time for yourself to work on things that matter. In return, you will…
3. Increase your own value. Relationships and networking are not merely based on who you know and who is in your network of friends. It is also about what you can bring to the table. What kind of value can you provide to the network you are a part of. Remember, social circles are all about you. It is about what you can contribute.
4. Less commitments. Friendship is a form of commitment. And having a minimalist friendship or social circles enable you to focus on friendships that are really important to you without experiencing committments overload.
5. Less drama and gossips. Drama and gossips come from making assumptions of what is going on in some other people’s minds. And making assumptions and guessing are two energy draining activities. Do you really want to waste your energy on these kind of activities ?
What if right now you feel like you are having too many friends and would like to walk the path of minimalist social circle?
There are only 3 steps in order for you to have a minimalist social circle.
1. Make your beliefs and values the main friendship filter. Ask yourself or do an inventory (written or mental) of the values that you think are important to you. Any future friend that you would like to bring into your social circle must pass this test of value.
2. Strengthen your tie/friendship/bonding with the friends that pass the value test. You can do it by doing more activities with them and be ready to provide value and when it is necessary. The most important value is of course your time. Spend more time with friends that you treasure their companion.
3. Let those unwanted friendships fade and die. Friendship is forever but friends do come and go. How do you let those friends go? Spend less time with them. Politely turn down any invitation for drinks or parties. And make yourself busy with things that matter.
Are you ready and willing to craft a minimalist social circle now?