I am on a quest for a simple life. A life that my body can handle. A life that I feel relaxed and calm in and can experience some silence in. A life that I can be myself in. Whoever that is.
But today, I don’t feel like I’m doing very well at it.
I’ve got determination in spades but when it comes to change at a fundamental level like this, which bucks the trend everywhere, oooh well it can feel like that resolve weakens. And today is one of those days.
I write about what I’ve done to change my life, furnishing you all with all that lovely motivational speak. But I would be doing you a disservice if I didn’t furnish you with all the struggles too.
Change isn’t just about the glossy bits after all.
I’m probably being harsh on myself. I have achieved a lot. I don’t work as much as I used to. I work easily about a fifth of the time I used to. But I think the underlying issue for me has to do with the ‘money go round’ which I can’t seem to get off and that constant feeling of being drawn back to what I know to solve the problem.
But there’s a bit more to it than that, I also like the buzz I get from working and getting drawn back into old ways and expectations.Change isn't just about the glossy bits after all. Click To Tweet
Here are my two simple life ‘demons’:
The first is money. Don’t get me wrong we’ve cut down A LOT but our incomings don’t always meet our outgoings. Fact. The materialism of our modern world is also just constantly shoved in your face just to make those things even more challenging.
The second is my own ambition and drive. That thing that keeps me knocking on the work door. Ask anyone what my strengths are. They will say fast, reliable, high achiever. Urgh hearing that now makes me want to vomit – mainly because I know how sick all that activity could make me. But yet it’s ingrained in my being. A lot of it is physiological – my adrenaline issues have a lot to answer for. Which so makes this path to a slower life hard. My brain might like the buzz but my body, these days, totally hates it.
I need some inspiration.
I think the other thing I am coming to realise is that perhaps I need more sources of inspiration around me to help me envision whatever this destination is or could be? Well at least I think I do.
I feel half in, half out.
How do other people do this? Have they totally opted out of the norms of society to do this simple life thing? Is a simple life half in, half out even possible? It sounds like an oxymoron saying it. I’m beginning to think maybe not.Is a simple life half in, half out even possible? Click To Tweet
You see, while I’m trying to feel my way to this better place, everyone else that I associate with is either still totally flat out working like maniacs or in transitory places, like freelancing, achieving different spins of the coin in terms of getting themselves more money and/or achieving less stress (depending on what it is they are looking for).
Who knows perhaps they are all caught in the same mind lock as me?
The hardest thing I find is constantly being reminded of where I was and all the things that enabled – a nice place to live, good schools, holidays, excursions. The list goes on doesn’t it? The material stuff that our society at large deems ‘normal’.
It’s a constant battle to shift away from it.
But shift I am.
However, I find that instead of focusing my week on the good things I will do for myself and my family, my focus has often become how to limit the bad things (anything likely to trigger my symptoms) or the tough bits of this process (like living on much less).
I need to adjust my lens. Look for the good.
But I’m like a rudderless ship. A bit all over the place frankly. And I can’t work out if rudderless is a good or bad thing? Should I be feeling my way to the future or should I have more structure about it? Is having a vision really necessary? If I haven’t been there yet how on earth should I know what it looks like anyway? Isn’t there greater adaptiveness, excitement and fulfilment in the unknown?
I can definitely see the experimentation benefits in not knowing what the future holds but I do think perhaps some sort of direction might help me. At least to ensure I can course correct when the going gets tough – on days like today for instance.
This change stuff is so bloody hard (said the change consultant quietly to herself). Shouldn’t I know this stuff? Nah maybe not.
On balance, I think it would help to surround myself with more people who have done this. So I don’t feel quite so alone in this wilderness.
So I’m looking for those of you who have achieved a simpler or quieter life – regardless of the reasons why. You don’t necessarily need to be someone with a chronic health condition. You can be anyone who can shine a light on this destination I seek and provide a source of motivation.
And maybe that’s all it is – motivation and not necessarily a vision that I need?
I want to learn about what you have achieved so you can help me keep going on this quest for simple and for a bit more silence.
Help me stoke up my fire.
So if this is you or if you know of anyone please put them in touch.
There’s a diverse world of simpler and quieter existences out there.
We need to shout about them more to drown out the buzz of the busy and the ridiculous.
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