August 24, 2018
“Life is lived in the moments of simplicity!”
My wife and me will soon begin our lives in a new environment. We have the choice of regretting what we leave behind or taking advantage of what the future has to offer. In my case I believe less will be more. Less chores means there will be more time to read and enjoy some of the things we have missed.
Having our food prepared and offered in a pleasant setting with others means more human contact, more social opportunities, I will be glad when the move is behind us, a time when we can enjoy a simpler life. A life lived more simply as did the author of the following edited piece.
Key Lessons for Living a Simple Life
BY LEO BABAUTA
I’ve learned some key lessons for living a simple life, and I thought I’d share a few with you.
- We create our own struggles. All the stress, all the frustrations and disappointments, all the busyness and rushing … we create these with attachments in our heads. By letting go, we can relax and live more simply.
- Become mindful of attachments that lead to clutter and complexity. For example, if you are attached to sentimental items, you won’t be able to let go of clutter. If you are attached to living a certain way, you will not be able to let go of a lot of stuff. If you are attached to doing a lot of activities and messaging everyone, your life will be complex.
- Distraction, busyness and constant switching are mental habits. We don’t need any of these habits, but they build up over the years because they comfort us. We can live more simply by letting go of these mental habits.
- Single-task by putting your life in full-screen mode. Imagine that everything you do — a work task, answering an email or message, washing a dish, reading an article — goes into full-screen mode, so that you don’t do or look at anything else. You just inhabit that task fully, and are fully present as you do it. What would your life be like? In my experience, it’s much less stressful when you work and live this way.
- Create space between things. Add padding to everything. Do half of what you imagine you can do. We tend to cram as much as possible into our days. We never feel like we have enough time because we try to do too much. But what would it be like if we did less? What would it be like if we padded how long things took, so that we have the space to actually do them well, with full attention?
- Find joy in a few simple things. For me, those include writing, reading/learning, walking and doing other active things, eating simple food, meditating, spending quality time with people I care about. I can let go of everything else my mind has fixated on, and just find the simple joy of doing simple activities.
- Get clear about what you want, and say no to more things. We are rarely very clear on what we want. What if we became crystal clear on what we wanted in life? If we knew what we wanted to create, how we wanted to live … we could say yes to these things, and no to everything else. Saying no to more things would simplify our lives.
“To realize the soothing power of simple life is to find the secret of happiness!”
As in many homes on New Year’s Day, my wife and I faced the annual conflict of which was more important – the football games on television or the dinner itself. To keep peace, I ate dinner with the rest of the family, and even lingered for some pleasant after dinner conversation before retiring to the family room to turn on the game.
Several minutes later, my wife came downstairs and graciously even bought a cold drink for me. She smiled, kissed me on the cheek and asked what the score was. I told her it was the end of the third quarter and that the score was still nothing to nothing.
“See”? She said, continuing to smile, “You didn’t miss a thing.”
“Looking through the want ads last week, I came across a job that required a college degree or the equivalent. Finally, I thought, my eight years of high school are paying off.”
A crusty old Sergeant Major found himself at a gala event, hosted by a local liberal arts college.
There was no shortage of extremely young, idealistic ladies in attendance, one of whom approached the Sergeant Major for conversation. She said, “Excuse me, Sergeant Major, but you seem to be a very serious man. Is something bothering you?”
“Negative, ma’am,” the Sergeant Major said, “Just serious by nature.”
The young lady looked at his awards and decorations and said, “It looks like you have seen a lot of action.”
The Sergeant Major’s short reply was, “Yes, ma’am, a lot of action.”
The young lady, tiring of trying to start up a conversation, said, “You know, you should lighten up a little. Relax and enjoy yourself.”
The Sergeant Major just stared at her in his serious manner.
Finally the young lady said, “You know, I hope you don’t take this the wrong way, but when is the last time you had sex?”
The Sergeant Major looked at her and replied, “1955.”
She said, “Well, there you are. You really need to chill out and quit taking everything so seriously! I mean, no sex since 1955! Isn’t that a little extremeThe Sergeant Major, glancing at his watch, said in his matter-of-fact voice, “You think so? It’s only 2130 now.”
“Be grateful for what you have and you will always have enough.”
Lailah Gifty Akita
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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