Author Leo Babauta changed my life in a very practical way – he introduced me to the concept of minimalism.

I first started reading his books, like Zen to Done, to learn more about productivity but instead discovered a whole new world of minimalism, simplicity and the power of doing less. I became an avid reader of his fantastic blog, Zen Habits, which forced me to question my values and think about how I could improve my life. Through his work I discovered other fantastic writers who were also exploring these concepts like Joshua Becker, Joshua Fields Millburn, Ryan Nicodemus, Colin Wright and Courtney Carver.

One of the most revolutionary ideas that I love about Leo’s blog, and his book Zen to Done, is that he has released the copyright and made them available in the public domain. If you’d like to find out more I suggest you read his post called Feel Free to Steal My Content that goes into detail about his decision.

He also keeps his website up to date with a simple list of his priorities. Often he says no to everything related to public appearances depending on his current goals.

So I was delighted when I found out Leo was coming to Melbourne Writers Festival in 2015! I immediately signed up for the blogging masterclass that he was facilitating as part of the program. I wasn’t surprised to find out that he is just as authentic in person as he is in his writing. The masterclass was hands-on, personal and thoughtful. He provided insight into his own writing practice but was far more interested in helping everyone in the room on their own journeys.

At the end of the event Leo and I had a short conversation and I had the opportunity to share how he’s changed me for the better. It is a weird experience to meet someone who has had such a positive impact on your life. For me just being able to say ‘thank you’ to him was a fantastic feeling. It definitely goes down as my favourite moment at MWF!

If you’re interested in changing your habits, or finding out more about minimalism, I highly recommend taking a look at Zen Habits.

Kylie Eddy is the Marketing & Development Manager at MWF and a self-confessed minimalist. She has spent the last decade working for festivals and major events, and is also a passionate screenwriter and film producer. Kylie is the co-founder of Lean Filmmaking, an agile process for creating video content, and runs the largest filmmaking meetup group in Australia.