Minimalism is a trend and it’s not going away. It permeates every facet of our societies as many of us are simply fed up of pursuing over-the-top lifestyles. There is clatter everywhere and in every sense of the word. Maybe this is the reason minimalists were able to exert their philosophy of living onto others. And this applies to many aspects of life – whether it’s designing the living room in minimalist Scandinavian style or building a capsule wardrobe consisting of versatile clothes and shoes for every occasion.
The minimalist approach has also affected every day carry for men as well. Your pockets, your briefcase or your vehicle are a great place to start practicing simplicity because the real estate in all three categories is very limited. So, if you decide to take the least amount of every day carry items, what pieces would you go for?
Taking an LED flashlight in a bag is professional requirement for many. It applies to tradies, law enforcement, engineers, security, and other occupations. A reliable LED torch is essential for a number of recreational activities, too. But what about your every day carry? Do you want to take a full-sized and powerful flashlight everywhere you go? Of course not, especially if you make your first steps into minimalism.
However, there are many instances in which the modern man needs a practical lighting source that’s more powerful than a smartphone’s flash. Going for a compact pocket LED torch is the perfect purchase if you’re trying to reduce unnecessary clutter and want to ensure you always have powerful illumination available. After all, we are talking about a reliable light source which will help you find your keys or your way if suddenly stranded in the middle of the night.
You don’t need something special. Just get a small torch of up to 100mm. They usually pass well on a drop test of up to 1.5 meters and are waterproof. In terms of ergonomics, it’s always better if the light source provides a solid grip. Sometimes this is achieved by adding knurling in different configurations. This is useful in allowing good ventilation too.
While output of pocket flashlights in lumens can’t be compared to the full sized torches, they still manage to pack admirable power starting from 180 and ending with 300 lumens (for those on the high end). Such small torches are easy to carry thanks to the two-way pocket clips usually fitted on them. The pocket LED torch is operated via a tail switch, includes a single battery (that can be rechargeable or removable) and this is just enough for including it in your essentials.
Nothing incorporates multi-function in every day carry like the iconic multi tool does. And it’s helpful and handy for everyone, not just for those that want to get rid of dragging their toolbox around. You don’t have to be a tradie to have such a tool in your pocket. It’s useful to open a bottle, to tighten a loose screw, to cut open parcels and packages, to open cans etc. And when it comes to all the multi tools available on the market, nothing beats the Leatherman.
Including a lightweight and versatile Leatherman multitool in your pocket instantaneously allows you to leave several tools behind. No need to carry a knife or a blade any more, since almost any model has more than one. Some even have a mini saw. The typical tools you can expect are: pliers, wire cutters, screwdrivers and scissors, however each model has its own addition to these. For exampl, some include a corkscrew, while other include a ruler, and some even have firearm polishing rods. So, you are hardly making a mistake when you go for a Leatherman multitool regardless if you choose the Surge, Juice, Skeletool, Rebar, Wingman, Charge or any of the others.
It’s not easy to find a reliable multitool like Leatherman which does not take much space in your pocket when folded. You can attach the carabiner to your keychain, or clip it to your belt. Whatever you choose to do, it’s easily accessible. And it will be for a while because it’s covered by a 25 year warranty. Depending on the exact model you choose your Leatherman will be made of aircraft grade aluminum alloys, high carbon stainless steel, carbon fiber, or black oxide. These are all durable and heavy duty materials. Those that aren’t much so, like ferro rods, screw bits and similar, can be replaced after you wear them out. Frankly, there are not that many reasons against taking a Leatherman in your every day carry.
We are going for the minimal here as well. Nowadays you can easily reduce your wallet to a series of cards. But it’s always a good idea to have some cash, there will be some bills and change, so don’t go too skinny either. A decent slim bifold wallet with a lot of card slots will do the job. Don’t forget to check if your wallet has a RFID-proof layer though, to avoid the embarrassment of being robbed without even knowing it.
Pen and Notebook
It’s counter intuitive isn’t it? How can a minimalist use a pen and notebook when one can easily write down any data in their smartphone? Unfortunately, things are not that simple and there is definitely a case for carrying a writing pad around. Generally speaking, we are plugged in and use the internet way more than we should. The smartphone is full of notifications and updates, and the computer is not far behind either. There is no better way to unwind then to write down – just about anything – on an actual piece of paper. It certainly is in line with the philosophy of using as little means to achieve as much goals. Having a waterproof pen can be handy in leaving marks on objects (if need be), signing legal documents and piercing plastic packages.
These are some of the pieces deemed essential for becoming a minimalist. The criteria can get fairly subjective, and depends upon your exact every day environment. So don’t worry if you don’t imagine yourself adhering to every minimalism dogma there is. There are pieces, like carrying protection, that you simply can’t leave your house without. You can never know when you’ll need to put into play the gadgets in your every day carry.