This summer we’ve looked at the energy of simplicity. Whether you are on vacation right now or have just returned, the question comes up, “How can I keep this vacation feeling going?” The relaxing, totally fun, in the moment, not thinking about anything but what’s for dinner – not a care in the world – that kind of feeling.
I believe it is possible to carry this feeling with us as we move into fall and winter. We have a choice every single day of our lives in how we focus our attention. That may sound too simple, but it’s the way I’ve come to experience my everyday life.
Here’s a recap of the summer’s blog posts on living simply:
We developed a list of our priorities – the necessary non-negotiable parts of our life – our core needs and desires. And we thought about what was missing from our lives, uncovering more clues to those people, events and things that are necessary for our happiness and ease.
We learned the art of saying no so that we could eliminate the unnecessary so that these necessary priorities may have room to flourish and grow.
We sat with the thought –are we hiding behind our busyness as a way of avoiding life’s difficult decisions? Brene Brown talks about wearing our busyness as a badge of honor. She suggests that our culture has become one which equates being busy with being important. “One of the most universal numbing strategies is what I call crazy-busy… We are a culture of people who’ve bought into the idea that if we stay busy enough, the truth of our lives won’t catch up with us.”
That made us sit up and think!
We asked whether we were numbing ourselves, and if so, were we ready to let go of the crutch of busy, busy, busy, allowing us the time and attention to delve into the center of what’s missing from our lives.
We explored with Richard Carlson, Ph.D, author of Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all small stuff, about simplicity and living an authentic life. He says, “…as long as you think more is better you’ll never be satisfied.” He goes on to say that the problem isn’t in the wanting, but in the longing for more.
We looked at whether we are craving and striving after more stuff, more love, more happiness. And realized that being happy with what you have right now is a key ingredient to happiness, joy and ease. We can want more – as long as we come from the state of being OK with what we have first and leave the craving and the longing behind.
We came to the realization that simplicity is a state of mind. It’s the feeling-state of joy, ease, play and gratitude. The world can be in chaos, our lives full of activities and to-do list items, but if we are in a state of joy and inner peace at the same time – that’s the key – that’s simplicity in action.
We talked about our attitude –that how we view life – is up to us. We are in control of our attitudes and emotions, and we can either succumb to the drama queen within or choose another option. As Charles Swindoll so famously said, “Life is 10 percent what happens to me and 90 percent how I react to it.”
And we even learned how to use a new energy tool – a protection rose– to keep those drama energies at bay.
Finally, we brought into focus the wonderment, the joy and simplicity of children; knowing that even as adults, it’s possible for us to pause and return to the wonderment we once felt.
We explored the energy of perfectionism; the need to seek approval from others that is keeping us from being comfortable in our own skin.
And finally we asked ourselves this question: “Are we able to put our own happiness first?” Such a radical concept – but freeing at the same time. As we come into balance with our own needs and desires, living from a feeling-state of ease, joy and gratitude, we find simplicity.
The feeling state of simple, free to be me, free to play, to sing, to dance with joy.
It’s been there all along. Just below the surface. Waiting to be discovered. Simplicity in action – simply being me.
Ways to Keep in Touch. If you have enjoyed our summertime series on Simplicity, please let your friends know about the blog. I truly believe that we can change the world – one feeling-state at a time.