Voluntary Simplicity

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Voluntary Simplicity '

A lifestyle that minimizes consumption and the pursuit of wealth and material goods. Individuals choose voluntary simplicity in order to attain a simpler but more meaningful life. Voluntary simplicity is quite different from those who are forced to spend less and live a more simple life involuntarily, such as those who lose their job and cannot find work.

Also known as "simple living."

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Voluntary Simplicity '

In our modern-day society, people often seek to buy happiness and find that materialism often does not satisfy. Some of these people will choose to leave the "rat race" and live a simpler, less stressful life. A simpler life is less costly, so people can work less and have more time for themselves and family. Voluntary simplicity is not about living with less of what money can buy, but about wanting less.

Moving from a lifestyle of greater consumption towards a lifestyle based on voluntary simplicity is called downshifting.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Elm Street Economy

    The Elm Street economy is a contemporary economic movement that ...
  2. Freeganism

    Freeganism is a lifestyle philosophy focused on adopting alternative ...
  3. Affluenza

    A social condition arising from the desire to be more wealthy, ...
  4. Downshifting

    The act of reducing one's standard of living for an improved ...
  5. Discretionary Income

    The amount of an individual's income that is left for spending, ...
  6. Autonomous Consumption

    The minimum level of consumption that would still exist even ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. What economic indicators are important to consider when investing in the retail sector?

    The unemployment rate and Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) rank as two of the most important economic indicators to consider ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. How do changes in interest rates affect the spending habits in the economy?

    Changes in interest rates can have different effects on consumer spending habits depending on a number of factors, including ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What is the difference between an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) and a VAR ...

    An original equipment manufacturer (OEM) is a company that manufactures a basic product or a component product, such as a ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. How much does seasonality affect the net sales figures of companies, such as retailers?

    Seasonality affects both sales and net sales figures of companies in different ways. For some companies, seasonality has ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. What are the goals of a "dove" Federal Reserve head?

    The goals of a dovish Federal Reserve head are to maintain low interest rates, stimulate the overall economy, decrease the ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Why do economists think it is important to track discretionary income?

    Economists track discretionary, and disposable, income as a proxy for the growth in the financial health of average citizens ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Budgeting

    Stop Keeping Up With The Joneses - They're Broke

    Conspicuous consumption could be robbing you of future wealth.
  2. Retirement

    Downsize Your Home To Downsize Expenses

    Learn how to cut your mortgage, tax, gas and utilities bills.
  3. Personal Finance

    Go Green, Save Money

    Follow a few of these simple tips to become more "green" - and keep more of it in your wallet.
  4. Budgeting

    Save Without Sacrifice

    Don't sacrifice your life for your savings - get out there and have fun!
  5. Budgeting

    Downshift To Simplify Your Life

    Learn how to ditch the rat race with voluntary simple living.
  6. Savings

    Best Banks to Stash Your Million Dollars

    Get the richest perks and red carpet treatment for you and your money from these financial institutions.
  7. Fundamental Analysis

    Vice Can Be Nice: 4 Sin Stocks to Consider

    These four sin stocks are likely to be resilient during a bear market.
  8. Personal Finance

    10 Jobs to Avoid Right Now

    These jobs may never recover to pre-recession highs, can easily be outsourced overseas or may disappear altogether as technology intervenes.
  9. Economics

    What Does Inferior Good Mean?

    The term “inferior good” does not describe a lack of quality, but rather, is an economic term used when discussing elasticity of demand for a good.
  10. Savings

    Pepsi (PEP) Gets Crafty with Soda: Will it Pop?

    Pepsi is getting crafty with the launch of its Stubborn Soda. Is it a recipe for success?

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. OsMA

    An abbreviation for Oscillator - Moving Average. OsMA is used in technical analysis to represent the variance between an ...
  2. Investopedia

    One of the best-known sources of financial information on the internet. Investopedia is a resource for investors, consumers ...
  3. Unfair Claims Practice

    The improper avoidance of a claim by an insurer or an attempt to reduce the size of the claim. By engaging in unfair claims ...
  4. Killer Bees

    An individual or firm that helps a company fend off a takeover attempt. A killer bee uses defensive strategies to keep an ...
  5. Sin Tax

    A state-sponsored tax that is added to products or services that are seen as vices, such as alcohol, tobacco and gambling. ...
  6. Grandfathered Activities

    Nonbank activities, some of which would normally not be permissible for bank holding companies and foreign banks in the United ...
Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!