Hi, I’m James. You don’t know me, but hopefully through reading these digital missives you’ll be able to come to a better understanding of who I am, what minimalism is, what it means to me, and what my mission is.
I’m a twenty-something high school graduate originally from San Diego, California. I moved to Tampa Bay, Florida with my parents in my late teens, then moved to Orlando for one of my first “successful” tech jobs. After moving back to San Diego to chase a career opportunity, I was invited to move to Boston, Massachusetts to further that pursuit and engage a very deep and meaningful relationship.
After moving to Boston, living in a multi-year relationship, and diving deep into my career, I hit a wall: the aforementioned relationship ended with my then-partner leaving for the Bay Area to pursue their career and cash-in their company equity, I started having massive panic attacks and a steady increase in stress at work, and I found myself fairly-well alone in New England without a support structure. I started questioning what all of these events meant for me, what my future was going to be–literally everything right down to my sanity.
If my story sounds similar to the story of one Joshua Fields Millburn, it should. I had been aware of Joshua’s website The Minimalists, where he co-authors content with Ryan Nicodemus, for a couple years. Up until that point, I hadn’t seriously considered minimalism a strong influence in my life. When I started getting my bearings again, I embarked upon a calculated campaign of curation, where I questioned every possession I owned, the relationships I maintained, the purpose of both, and the decision of whether to curate that object or relationship further into my focus or out of it completely.
What I began to find was that I really didn’t know myself. I didn’t know what made me happy, who I really enjoyed interacting with, what I wanted to do with my career, or even what I could consider my life’s mission or charter. I began to think that maybe I needed a way to clear my head, get my bearings, and find a more rewarding direction to point myself.
One day, I had a thought: maybe I could take a long sabbatical. It wouldn’t necessarily be that difficult to do, as I was making a good living at my job and others in my field have done similar things to recharge their proverbial batteries. All I needed to do was save money, do something about my belongings, and cultivate a deeper sense of adventure. I began hiking outdoors more often, engaging in tougher physical training at my local climbing gym, and even began shopping around for parts to build my own version of the Adventure Truck (since I owned a pickup of my own).
My current mission is simple: seek challenge through adventure and cultivate a broader sense of myself and the world around me. To that end, I created this blog both as a way to record my progress as well as to spread the message. Minimalism and modern life are not incompatible, it doesn’t require a rich twenty-something to embark upon, and that adventure is a gateway to growth. I hope you’ll join me on the journey.