Mar 23, 2021
This show begins with my paean to worry, and how I’ve finally learned to let go and not let it run me so much. And it’s a fitting opening for a show that is really, at its heart, about freedom. And simplicity.
For a long time, I’ve wanted to do a show about minimalism—the practice of simplifying life so it’s no longer about stuff, but is rather about mindfulness, presence and calm. What better expert, then, than the lovely Vera from the popular YouTube channel Simple Happy Zen?
Vera had many cogent points to make from her simple, pretty living room in Amsterdam… and I took copious notes! Along the way, I learned:
… and so much more!
May this inspire your own foray into the spare, fresh, simple world of minimalism!
ON HER WEBSITE: Vera says, “In 2017 I started Simple Happy Zen, after many months of going back and forth about it in my head. It was an interesting period in my life. Earlier that year I was at home, recovering from my burn-out. My corporate job was making me miserable, I felt empty and I missed feeling a sense of meaning or fulfilment from my job. I started making videos on YouTube as a hobby, wanting to share what I’ve learned with people around the world. Little did I know, that I was embarking on one of the most meaningful, fun and exciting journeys of my life.
Since then, I’ve continued uploading a new video every week, sharing my thoughts on minimalism, intentional living, happiness and self development. The world we live in can be pretty hectic, and we often feel like we have to join this pace if we want to ‘succeed’. With Simple Happy Zen, I wanted to create a place for people to unwind, relax, be themselves and get inspired. Because not only can we all use some of that, we deserve it.
I didn’t expect to fall in love with being an online content creator as much as I did. I had absolutely zero experience with making videos, being on camera, social media or building an online platform. One year after I started, the channel reached 10,000 subscribers. I absolutely loved engaging with people in the comments section (and I still do!) and I knew this was the place for me. I could share my lessons and experiences with people around the world, who in their turn let me know that my videos were helping them to improve their life and their happiness.
Fast forward to today, the channel has passed 100,000 subscribers. I’ve created an e-book, a newsletter and even an online course, which was the most challenging and fulfilling project I’ve ever worked on. I’ve met incredible people and Simple Happy Zen has blossomed into my own online business. I’ve grown so much as a content creator, but also as a person. And I can’t even begin to express my gratitude for all the wonderful things that happened, and all the amazing people around the world who support and encourage me.
I am currently 32 years old and I live in the Netherlands. I’ve been practicing a minimalist lifestyle since 2013. Simple living is one of the best changes I’ve ever made. It has made me experience so much more freedom, happiness, gratitude and adventure. Aside from minimalism, I’ve also been practicing mindfulness and meditation for over 10 years. Though my burn-out was a very challenging time in my life, I still felt happy and optimistic. I’m positive that my lifestyle was what helped me through it, which made me want to share what I’ve learned with the world.
Aside from making online content, my passions include veganism, animals, cooking, music, tea (I drink A LOT of tea), being around friends, taking long walks,playing video games and studying the Japanese language.
I am not by any means perfect. I make mistakes like anyone, and I have my off days. However, I try my best to learn and grow, to accept and embrace myself and my life. I always make my videos from the heart, my inspiration coming from my own experiences as well as everything I see happening around me. Life is truly quite magical, if you can find some time to contemplate on it. I can be quite the bookworm, and I love to read and learn about meditation, mindfulness, minimalism and Eastern philosophy. There is infinite wisdom yet to be learned, and I love translating these things into my videos to share with the world.
You can find me on YouTube, which is where I post a new video every Saturday. And be sure to join the thousands of others who are receiving my free weekly newsletter too! And if you want to connect on Twitter, you can find me there as well.
I hope to see you in the comments section of one of my videos!