Do you ever feel like the universe is trying to tell you something? You start noticing a similar theme in conversations, in books you’re reading, or podcasts you’re listening to? Well, that’s exactly what led to this week’s post. Over the past month one word seems to keep repeating itself throughout my life: Simple. When our uncle spoke of being a “simple man” at his 90th birthday party, I really started paying attention. Generally when we hear this word, it’s about simplifying. It’s about a physical act of simplifying your life by clearing the clutter from your home or simplifying your schedule by saying yes to fewer events. These are things I’ve made a very conscious effort to tackle over the past year or so but I want to take it further. My soul is craving simplicity so here are a few things I plan to focus on in the coming months:
-Have meaningful conversations with friends. I don’t want to just meet for a fun night out, I want to know them better. I want to talk about life and fears and dreams and I want to truly connect and show them I care. And if I don’t feel comfortable having these conversations with them or they don’t reciprocate, then maybe I need to re-evaluate the relationship.
-Enjoy simple activities. A bonfire in the backyard, a hike in the woods, playing with my dogs or doing crafts with girlfriends.
-Embrace down time. Not jump from thing to thing to thing without time to think or breath in between.
-Stop glorifying busy. My other career thrives on busy. If you aren’t busy, you aren’t successful and I refuse to accept that any more. I don’t have to be busy to be successful. And I don’t have to succumb to other’s definition of success.
-Put the phone down. If I am in line at the grocery store, simply be in line and observe the world around me instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media just because it’s something to do.
-Be intentional with my commitments. Only attend events I truly want to attend and be fully present while I am there.
-Be a better listener. Stop waiting for my turn to speak or contriving a response and truly listen to what the other person is saying and respond with something genuine.
-Notice the small things that bring me joy. The sun shining, my hot cup of coffee, my house plant that is still alive.
-Stop over complicating problems and internalizing conflicts. A problem is simply that. Something that needs to be solved. A conflict is the same and taking it at face value instead of attaching emotions to it will lead to resolution a whole lot quicker.
-Stop focusing on what other people are doing with their lives. It is their life, it is their decision. If they want my opinion or advice, they will ask, otherwise it does not need my mental attention.
Living a life of simplicity is not always easy in this constantly connected and chaotic world but I think it’s well worth the effort. I will take a life of intention and authenticity over the hustle and bustle of modern life anytime. Do you have any tips on simplifying or ideas to add to my list? Share them with us in the comments below!