Photo by Max Vakhtbovych from Pexels
I'm passionate about living with intention, about living simply. I find that having a higher awareness around the way I want to live, has improved my life significantly. A simpler life equals a better life, the way I see it.
Let me rule out one misconception right away:
By simple I don't necessarily mean minimalistic.
Yes, I'm definitly pro decluttering and getting rid of things you don't really need, but I don't mean that you have to strip down your home to a bare minimum to live a simple life. I'm definitly in favor of having things around you that bring you joy and also add to the quality of your life in different ways. This can be things like books, films, plants, board games, beautiful china, soft cushions... whatever brings joy to YOU.
Having more things around you doesn't mean that your home needs to be a mess. There are beautiful ways you can organize your things so that each item has its own place and also gets the attention it deserves. You can do this either by displaying each item in a way that makes it stand out, or by keeping it stored away most of the time and just take it out on special occasions, which will give it a very special value.
When I grew up, we had in my childhood home a beautiful blue glass bowl with gold details on it. This bowl only came out on special occasions, like Christmas or certain anniversaries. It became an item that all of us siblings really cherished (we are 6), and when our parents had died and we were dividing some things between us, this bowl was high up on everybody's "wish list", I think. Of course, only one of us could actually have it, and I was not that one, but it was OK. There were other cherished items, too, so we made sure that we all got one thing that we considered special, - one thing that we wanted to keep in remberance of our parents and of a happy childhood. We all had different memories and different favorites, so that was fine. On that note, I might also add that I myself have always been of the opinion that if anyone is going to envy me something, I'd rather not have it. No matter how dear a thing might be to me, it's definitly not worth falling out over!
Picture from ebay - only meant as illustration. The mentioned bowl didn't look exactly like this.
This was just an example of how one beloved item can really get that extra attention and love that it probably deserves. Things are mostly made for either a practical purpose or for pleasure - and sometimes both - and I believe that the things you surround yourself with should have at least one of those meanings to you. If they don't, you should get rid of them. Don't keep anything just because you got it as a present or don't have the "heart" to dispose of it. Ask yourself: Do I need this? Do I like this thing? Does it give me a good feeling to look at it? If your answer to all these questions is NO, then you know what to do. You don't necessarily need to throw it in the garbage bin, - you can give it away or try to sell it. Some items may be of high value and can bring in some cash, which is always good.
I'll come back to how you can simplify your surroundings in a future article, and I'll tell you especially about how you can successfully do it the French way.
But living a simpler life isn't just about things. It's just as much - if not more - about simplifying your daily tasks. It's about getting more time to do the things you enjoy, and ditching what you don't really want to spend time on.
Very often we end up saying yes to things that other people suggest, even if we'd rather do something else. Why? Well, sometimes it's simply out of politeness or because we're afraid of hurting someone's feelings. Other times it's because we feel obliged to. We also might feel that other people's needs are so much more important than our own, - which is of course total crap! The result is often that we feel completely overwhelmed and exhausted by all the things we feel that we "should" be doing.
If you're a person who keeps letting other people dictate your agenda: Stop doing that! Start practicing the word NO a bit more often! And you don't even have to give any reason why you're saying no. It's your right to decide how you want to spend your own time. It's really nobody's business. If you'd rather spend an evening in your bathtub with a good book instead of going out with your colleagues, then you should do that.
Picture by cottonbro from Pexels.
I suggest that you start right now and think about how you can create a better life for yourself. What can you do right now to take that first step towards simplifying your life and getting rid of stress and overwhelm?
One thing that can help you is to sign up for my FREE 5-day email course, which will really kick-start you in the right direction. Another option is to read some of my previous articles on the subject, like "Why being a people pleaser prevents you from living the good life that you could have" and other articles in the category Intentional Living (see menu of categories on the right).
Whatever you decide: I'll definitly be writing a lot more about this in future articles, and I'm also working on an upcoming book - La Vie Adorable Blueprint - which I'll be giving away 50 FREE copies of when it's finished. If you want to be among the ones who get a FREE copy of the book sent in the mail, you can sign up for it here.
I hope you enjoyed this article, and that you'll share it with someone you know who might enjoy it, too.