Saturday, August 7, 2010

Simple In a Complex World

Living a simple life; what does that mean? I would like to think, among so many other things, that it means joyful living, a laid back pace, and narrowing life down to necessities. Society today inundates us with choices, options, technologies, upgrades, and luxuries. But often these things take away from living a more simple life. We live in a complex world, and simplicity sometimes becomes near impossible. Technologies and conveniences, made to enhance our lives, actually make life more difficult at times. Living a simple life is not necessarily easy.

The man made city next to the sea... a nice balance of simple and complex? Maybe.

We make choices in life that may contribute to living simply. Small town life allows people to live with less, unlike so many big cities in our country. Choices that you make in life, like where to live for example, can make the search for simplicity and inner peace a little easier. In her book Gift From the Sea, Ann Morrow Lindbergh says, "... certain modes of life, certain rules of conduct are more conducive to inner and outer harmony than others. There are, in fact, certain roads that one may follow. Simplification of life is one of them." However, simple is not always easy. Do you ever notice, when traveling to a beach or island destination, plenty of smiling faces and few frowns? The plentiful sun and water are not the reason for happiness (although sunshine does not hurt), it's the lifestyle people choose to live. You can live any lifestyle you choose, and location can help or hinder your path to a more simple and peaceful life.

Oh the wonders of the sea. That horseshoe crab carries its life on its back... what a simple way to live.

Cities add complexity to an already busy world. Now people are faced with a multitude of choices and methods for distraction and entertainment. Unfortunately, there are not more hours in a day when living in a city. Although, I think there should be. Commuting, traffic jams, work, meetings, restaurants, bars, parties... they are a few things that take away precious hours of each day. Instead of prioritizing time to read a book or share coffee with a friend, people must partake in the rat race of life in a busy city. One must survive amongst so many others who are trying to survive too. People forget to slow down for a minute and share a conversation with the person next to them. Were there more hours in a day while growing up in a small town, or what that just me? Busyness and stress make way for breakdowns and illness. Do people live simple lives in the city? I bet they do, it's just more work and effort to avoid the distractions and stress of busy city life. We have the choice to live in a complicated environment, but we have the ability to choose a more simple life no matter where we live.

If I could ride a bike everywhere I would... do what you love, love what you do.

Living a simple life is possible, but made increasingly difficult by so many outside influences from society and culture today. We all have a choice when it comes to our lifestyle. Striving to live simply may not be easy, but it sure is possible.

The choice is yours. Do you want to live a more simple life?
yes [  ]       no [  ]

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