Living Sustainably Part 2: Live Simply
Live simply. This statement sounds simple enough, right? Not so.
This seemingly obvious way of living has become a lifestyle choice that we consciously need to make and work towards. Living simply cannot be taken for granted in a world where being busy is glorified. As adults we work longer hours. Our children are expected to attend lengthening school days from an increasingly young age. We spend hours commuting further and further to our day jobs. We consume more and create less. Our goals become material based and personal relationships become neglected. The result is that we gradually accept that we no longer have the time to enjoy our home surrounds, the joy of family life and time spent with friends, or the time to relish in our own simple life pleasures.
So many of us go to extreme measures to gratify employers. We make massive personal sacrifices in the interest of paying ‘the bills.’ We commit our valuable time working extensive days, in often uninspiring jobs. Plans are made to enrol our children into schools, followed by extended periods in aftercare. These very institutions raise our children according to a one size fits all approach. Elderly family members are put into homes where people are employed to take 'care' of our own aged mothers and fathers. We eat fake food and many of us gain our daily exercise by running on a proverbial treadmill.
Time for work overwhelmingly overrides time needed for ourselves, our family and our friends. Compassion is a word we expect our children to understand, yet we live in a society where we cannot even extend a smile to the person next to us. There is little time to relish in home cooked meals, where a lack of time and exhaustion make fast food the new normal. Our busy lives deplete our ability to appreciate and nurture nature. We become consumed by the never ending consumerism. We unwittingly become overwhelmed as we over commit our time and stretch ourselves too thin. Material possessions and job titles become our bench markers instead of ‘our passions’ and ‘our people.’
Personally, I am aware of the pitfalls of modern day life and the beauty of living a simple life, yet I too am still grappling to find the balance. I am desperately trying to unravel years of believing in the system of school, university, get a job, buy a house, start a family, buy a bigger house - a system I feel is created to ensure life is incessantly about working to pay debt, which ultimately means little time for being with your family and living in that bigger house. Our daily workout on the treadmill of life tires us before we even get a chance to really start living.
With this in mind, I am determined to continue taking steps towards embracing a
simple life. I no longer choose to be so busy that I miss opportunities to marvel in the small moments. I choose to create an abundance of time for the people that really matter the most. I choose to be intentional and feel deep happiness
every day. I choose to work less and live more by following my passions. I choose to declutter and downsize my home. I choose to create a sense of balance and subsequent peace. I choose to spend time with my precious family, read, write and be reflective, to be present and ultimately to be calm and in control of my everyday choices.
Living simply will ultimately result in fewer material possessions, relationships which will grow stronger, conversations that will become more meaningful, family and friendship bonds that will strengthen and laughter that will become deeper and more often. A simple life leads to a life filled with great personal gratification and meaningful purpose. I choose to live this simple life.
Co-Founder: Artisan Lifestyle
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