How do you measure success?
A big house? Nice clothes? A stable job and six figure income?

Ryan Nicodemus spent his twenties climbing the corporate ladder, spurred on by the false belief that he could find meaning in life through financial gain and the acquisition of material goods. Inspired by childhood friend Joshua Fields Milburn, Nicodemus came to recognise that such endeavours were ultimately leaving him feeling empty and dissatisfied.

In their 2016 documentary film, The Minimalists, Nicodemus and Milburn share with the public the secret behind their newfound happiness. The Minimalists is an intimate and personal film about their own journey, with a universal message: filling your life with material goods does not fill that void, does not lead to long-term satisfaction.

In this film, the viewer is invited to take a step back and assess how success is portrayed in the media. Most people do not truly value the materiality of the goods they consume, but rather continue to mindlessly consume goods because they believe in their symbolic meaning. Such goods are ultimately status symbols.

 

Photo by Kumiko SHIMIZU on Unsplash

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