Rebranding minimalism

Marketing is what you do when your product is no good.
~Edwin Land

Tyler of Advanced Riskology has declared 2011 to be “the year of maximalism.”

Too bad maximalism is just minimalism with a different emphasis and a new name.

“…I’m more of a maximalist with minimalist tendencies – I own little so that I may have a lot.”
“If you’re going to maximize what you love, then you must also minimize what you hate.”

That’s the whole selling point of minimalism, dude. You sacrifice the things you don’t want in order to increase what you do want. I opted to sacrifice a decent internet connection and the ability to live alone in order to cut my living expenses and pay off my debt faster…so I can do what I want to do and not be tied down. I eat out less so I can do other things with that money. That’s maximalism, according to this guy. Interesting thing is that it’s also called minimalism and/or simple living.

At one point I entertained the idea of calling it “essentialism.” Stripping yourself and your life down to the essentials. But it’s still minimalism. Why have three names for the same damn thing? Either Tyler is trying to make a name for himself in a niche that’s pretty well full (although he did a good job of giving a virtual blowjob to several big name bloggers, so his position is secure there), or he’s trying to rebrand minimalism in order to get people on board who feel their beanie baby collections threatened by minimalism. Good thing for him is that there’s a lot of people eating this up like it’s something new.

It’s not new. It’s just saying “To get more of what you really want, you’re going to have to identify what you don’t really want and cut it from your life,” instead of “Identify what you don’t really want and cut it from your life so you can get more of what you really want.” Thankfully, I’m not the only person who’s noticed this. I’m still wondering about the rest of them, though.

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3 Responses to “Rebranding minimalism”

  1. There’s a lot in a name, and how you brand something can make or break it for the people you’re trying to connect with and help.

    Like I said in my article, minimalism and maximalism aren’t mutually exclusive ideas. It’s another way of looking at a similar idea.

    In true maximalist form, I say let’s give it as many names as it needs to reach the most people possible.

    Thanks for caring enough to write something about it.

  2. Thanks for the mention, Ulysses.
    although he did a good job of giving a virtual blowjob to several big name bloggers, so his position is secure there)
    hahahah! awesome!

  3. I know, it’s interesting and difficult to explain the whole movement whether it be minimalism or maximalism or whatever. All of it. First of all labelling yourself takes explanation, then you have to explain YOURSELF to others who may also consider themselves within that label but have different ideas. It’s exhausting, like politics. Goddamn labels. I think we just have to use them with less meaning – as in, MEAN THEM to be generalizations.

    I am lucky that a large amount of my friends in real life aren’t really on to any of these “phenoms”, so I can generalize and people will be happy for me being “kind of a minimalist”. On the internet though? WOW, you’ve got some ‘splainin to do no matter what you call yourself.

    btw Virtual blowjobs are necessary if you want to make money on the nets. This post, for example, is a virtual group hug to critics.

    High five! keep up the writing. All conversation is good conversation.
    -Torbjorn

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