Korean YouTube vloggers who inspire(d) me

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It has been quite a long time since I started to use YouTube as one of the main sources for study and self-improvement. I can easily find quality content and I choose what I want to see further. I have used YouTube as a secondary study source even for exams (I got a 10 in my Philosophy exam thanks to the videos I watched to understand difficult philosophical principles that I didn’t understand well in class). Last year I started to search for Korean channels that could help me improve my Korean, and this is how I actually found out about minimalism. I could easily find very nice channels made by Korean housewives or single women, who shared their advice and experience on minimalism. The videos helped me learn a lot of things related to how to live a better life, and at the same time my Korean improved because I chose to watch original content which is very enjoyable, and it relates to the subjects I am interested in.

Since the beginning of 2020 I have kept on watching this kind of content, and lately I have also discovered Korean videos about gardening which I have a great interest in. At the same time, I have learnt Korean vocabulary related to gardening, housekeeping and so on. I am extremely grateful for the content created by these great people, and this is why I have decided to dedicate today’s post to the people who inspired me to become better in many areas. These are my personal perspectives and the scope of this post is only to express gratitude and to recommend nice content related to simple life and minimalism to people who are interested in these subjects.

꽃피는 산골 (read as Kkot pineun sangol, meaning The mountain valley where flowers bloom) is a channel about flowers, gardening, sustainable life and people living in harmony with nature). I have found this channel quite recently but I came to love it, not only because I learned a lot of things about gardening and cooking, but also because I feel so much at peace whenever I watch its content. The videos show the life of a Korean couple who live in a remote mountain area, working together in the garden and enjoying the fruits of nature and of their hard work. This is a channel about life that can be easily enjoyed when you slow down, when you understand the meaning of life and when you work with nature, not against it.

오느른onulun (meaning today but written phonetically in Korean) is a channel run by a Korean TV producer who bought a house in the countryside, and who learns to enjoy a simple and slow life while renovating her newly bought house. This is a channel I have only discovered this year but I came to love its content so much. I love how this 32 years old woman is brave enough to buy a house on her own and how she shows her experiences with living in the countryside, how she learns from scratch skills like gardening, how she shows her clumsiness as a natural human characteristic and how she gets to know the people in that region while asking for help, while trying to learn how to live simply and beautifully. A truly inspiring and healing journey.

냥숲nyangsoop (which could be translated as Cat forest) is one of my favorite channels. It shows the daily life of a Korean woman who lives in the countryside with her cat. I like how she makes everything look so simple and enjoyable. She cooks a lot, and I find myself inspired when it comes to cooking every time I watch her videos. I also like the way she made her small house extremely practical and cozy. Our house can become that Little Forest where we feel the most comfortable, a place that we can call home sweet home.

해그린달 haegreendal. This is one of the first Korean channels I started watching, and I fell in love with the content and with the storytelling of the videos. The videos are made by a Korean housewife and mom, and she often shows her daily life as a mom, recipes she enjoys cooking and so on. What I like the most about her videos is the way she arranges her videos, the way she films, how she tells the story of the video. I found myself interested in video editing thanks to her beautifully arranged content. I hope I can watch her work for a long time.

슛뚜sueddu. I really like this channel because the videos are neatly edited (I learned a lot from this YouTuber as well in this area), and the content is simple and very enjoyable. I also learned a lot about minimalism from these videos, and I love to see the evolution of this channel’s owner as a freelancer. Also I find inspiration and motivation whenever I watch the videos on this channel, so this one is a keeper.

Kimi Life and 키미 Kimi are two channels created by the same person, but they have similar content. The videos are mostly about cultivating vegetables and cooking with what we produce by ourselves. I learned a lot about Korean cooking from these vlogs, thus is always a pleasure to watch and learn. I love the opening of the videos on this channel, and I find the editing quite professional. The videos usually start with the view of the mountain village filmed with a drone. Absolutely beautiful and healing.

보통엄마jin (read as Bottong eomma Jin, meaning Ordinary mom, Jin) is a channel run by a mother of two boys and a woman who is very active and tries to live her life while being a mom and a wife. I find her videos very inspiring. I love how she makes efforts to be a good mom while taking care of herself. I remember watching her video where she decided to exercise in order to become healthier and she inspired me to do the same. I was ashamed that I made less efforts, even if I had not a husband or kids who could have made things a little more difficult. Inspired by her I also started to exercise, and I lost 6 kg that year. I also learned a lot about cleaning in a sustainable way and I gave up along the way on many chemical and beauty products that are harmful for us and for the environment.

Who would have thought that one day I would find my biggest passion, Korean, and that that passion would bring the best in me? One journey leads to another. Every decision that we make leads us to live our life in a way or another. Every decision leads to another. Every little thing that we do connects to something that we will do in the future. In my case, through my passion for Korean I got to know about minimalism and to be inspired to practice it, and later on, through minimalism I got to practice journaling, and through journaling I got to practice meditation. These small dots connected and created a better me who is interested in personal growth and who will learn something new everyday.

Today I am grateful I got to write this post. I hope you find your inspiration like I found mine.

Stay inspired, and I’ll see you around.

Coping with maximalism as a minimalist

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If you read some of my articles, you already now that I have integrated minimalism in my life. Though I am far from being a minimalist, I make efforts every day in terms of frugality, sustainable lifestyle, reducing objects and, most importantly, in terms of paying attention when buying something new. If you read my articles, you know that I also used to be a maximalist, mostly because I thought I needed a lot of stuff to operate properly my everyday chores and routines. Today, the same person talks about how to cope with maximalism as a minimalist.

I will give you a perfect example for this opposition: my family and I. My father is in love with shopping since forever and he is a fan of buying in bulk. That’s not always a bad thing, especially in times like these, however my father loves to buy things, often saying that: ”We might need it some day.” My mother, she is not a fan of shopping so you might think she a frugal person. Not exactly. She also likes to buy things like dishes, bed sheets, pillowcases… you got the idea.

When I moved in another city to continue my studies, I was somehow forced by the circumstances to learn how to pack less and how to live with less. But even if I left home with almost nothing, until the end of the year I would double my possessions and it would be always difficult to move back home with all the luggage and then repeat the process the next year. Every year I would promise to myself that I won’t repeat the same mistake, but guess what? I’ve repeated the process for about 5 years. It was difficult to understand how exactly to keep this promise, I thought it was because I didn’t own my house, but now I know it was only an excuse.

When I decided to move back with my parents, I had already adopted minimalism and I decided to make more efforts to achieve an easier and simpler lifestyle. But I had forgotten that my parents had another lifestyle and it was me the one who changed. At the beginning I was constantly frustrated and I still am sometimes even these days. But then I remember that I have my lifestyle and my parents have theirs. I made my choice for mine and they made their choice for their own lifestyle. Since moving back with my parents I have learnt a lot of tricks that helped me cope with their maximalist lifestyle and I hope it can help you too.

So here you have it:

  1. Expect things to be difficult and take a deep breath.
  2. Don’t try to empty their things without asking if they still need them.
  3. Understand their perception on order and cleaning.
  4. Try to accept their lifestyle as it is.
  5. Make small changes gradually.
  6. Make suggestions and don’t try to force them to reduce their things. Make their brain become accustomed to the idea of reducing possessions.
  7. Make compromises.

I learnt from my own experience that you can’t impose your lifestyle to other people, even if they are your family. Maybe I tried to do it at first, because the pile of things was just too much for the new me to handle, but step by step I learnt to look the other way. There are still days when my brain says ”Look at that pile of things” and I actually see it. But then I start laughing, thinking that I’ve been trough that a thousand times before. While our lives and lifestyles can’t be perfect, transitioning to a new lifestyle or coping with different lifestyles can’t be perfect too. It is only a matter of patience, understanding and acceptance. And time is important too. Give time to them and to yourself as well.

Lessons I learnt from minimalism

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I talk a lot about minimalism because it really changed my life perspective. Even if I used to be a maximalist before, I was a very simple person. As I liked simple things, it’s almost like I was waiting to find minimalism and it’s nice to see that there is something that suits me so well. Other than that, minimalism taught me to appreciate more what I have now and even in the difficult moments of my life I believe that a better day will come. So minimalism is also related to optimism and faith, at least to me, and it works best in difficult moments. And now that I think about it better, it’s not wrong. Actually, in his book, Goodbye things, Fumio Sasaki says that one of the reasons many Japanese chose a simpler lifestyle is because of a catastrophe, the Great East Japan Earthquake, that affected so many people and made them change their perspective on life and their possessions.

Thus minimalism taught me as well about simplicity, about appreciating the present, about not caring about things, but caring about ourselves and the people we love. Minimalism is about reducing possessions in order to simplify our lives and have more time for the important things, more time for taking care of ourselves. There are too many things to do around the house anyway, so why make our job more difficult.

Another aspect related to minimalism that I really like is caring for the nature. I learnt about ecology in school and I really enjoyed participating in projects for environment protection. Thus, while practicing minimalism, step by step I started giving up on many chemical products (for example cleaning products, shower gels etc.) and I became more concerned about plastic use. I realized that many changes were not only good for the environment, but also for me, for my health and my finances.

Speaking of finances, minimalism can be used as a way of educating ourselves on how to do shopping. Like many other people, I used to buy a lot of unnecessary things that I thought were pretty or necessary to me. I remember that once I bought online a piece of clothing that promised to make me sweat and lose weight easier. I was foolish to believe all that marketing crap, but I gave it a chance and realized that it wasn’t working the way it was meant to. It was a foolish decision but I learnt that losing weight must be done by making more efforts, by adjusting my lifestyle and by doing the sport that I actually hated. Since then I must’ve bought other unnecessary things but at some point I started to question myself more often: you like it but do you really need it? Can’t you use what you have instead? Where are you going to place it? Are you going to use it for a long time? Is it a good quality product? I would also add the things that I want to buy on my shopping list and let them there for a few days or a week. If I still felt I need them after a few days then I would buy them, but I found myself removing a lot of objects from my list as I didn’t feel the urge of buying them. I would say to myself, I don’t need this, why did I put it on my list? It works well for me because we tend to buy based on the urge we feel at that moment, or because the marketing is so good and subtle in making us believe we need those things.

Actually we don’t need many of them and we can live just fine without all the stuff they sell on the internet or in those nicely organized stores. Buying things comes with a lot of responsibility: we spend money that we can use on something that we really need, we need more space for the things we buy, they might be thrown after a few uses, the waste they produce, we have more things to organize and clean. There are many aspects to take in consideration. I believe that minimalism is some sort of self-education. It’s easy to begin with, but it takes time to adjust your lifestyle to it and a lot of effort to maintain it for a long period of time. But once you get used to it you can’t live without it. This is what minimalism means to me.

And then I found minimalism

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It’s been a few months since I have decided to adapt my lifestyle to minimalism. Of course I cannot consider myself a minimalist, I am still so far away, and I believe that calling myself as such wouldn’t change so much. However, this is by far one of the best changes, one of the best decisions I made to bring myself to the next level.

I have to admit that I found out about minimalism quite recently, but I guess I was so busy with my chaotic life that I didn’t pay to much attention to this beautiful lifestyle. I like to believe that there is a right time for everything in our lives. Thus, it probably wasn’t the right time for me to get into minimalism at the time I found out about it. Even though I like the change I made, I don’t regret not making it earlier. I accept that my past experiences and my lifestyle were the catalyst for me choosing minimalism as a new way of living.

I used to be a maximalist. Being raised by maximalist parents, I loved to have a lot of things that even if I didn’t need immediately, they would be for sure necessary later. It is true, they came handy many times, but they would occupy a place for quiet a while in the attic for example, until their day came to be used. And when you buy/accumulate many things, you will only buy more things to organize what you already have. A vicious circle. Buying it’s like chocolate. It’s sweet, we love it, but it’s dangerous if we eat too much.


This was me. I loved buying and having many things as much as I loved chocolate (btw, now I even reduced to 90% the consume of chocolate). I was a true maximalist. I thought things would bring me satisfaction. I am not going to lie, buying things still gives me joy. I love buying online because it feels like I make myself presents. However, after I became an adult, I realized that things don’t bring happiness and even if they do, that happiness doesn’t even last 10 minutes. There are so many things I regret buying because some of them were not even used once. Buying things should only serve our needs. I realized that people buy often things just for the sake of buying something new, for trying to change their mood or their life. I used to do the same thing, but the truth is change doesn’t work that way. A change, or better said the will of a change that can help you grow will come most of the times from within yourself. Changing your mindset, your habits, your lifestyle, that is the change we must pursue.

I discovered minimalism while searching for answers, for solutions to live a better and a healthier lifestyle. I knew I wanted to lose weight but my mindset needed training first. Thus I began researching for methods to change my lifestyle, methods that would last and that would be easy to maintain for a long period of time. This is how I found out about famous minimalists like Marie Kondo and Fumio Sasaki. Because books and videos have a great impact on me, I started watching videos about minimalism and I even read books, the one with the biggest impact being Fumio Sasaki’s Goodbye, Things. I was fascinated about the things that I learned and soon I became addicted and started to experience this new lifestyle step by step. And this is the best way to approach something new in order to keep doing it. Changes are difficult anyway, so take it easy, you will get better step by step.

Minimalism changed me for the better. It changed the way I think, the way I act, the way I live. There are still a lot of things to discover and I know I am not very good at it, but if we think of minimalism as a way of living then it mustn’t be perfect. By giving your best and trying to live simply, respecting others and the nature, you are doing more than fine. Every time I talk about minimalism, I get so excited and I have so much to tell, but I end up saying so little. But I believe this is the pure essence of minimalism: saying more with less, doing more with less. When less is more, we become free to do more of the things we love. This is the life I want to live.