When I was stuck in a meaningless city job, commuting, working all hours and never seeing the sun during the week in winter, I remember longing for a simple life. A cottage in nature, books, peace and quiet. Wholesome food.
Many people seem to relate to this ideal, and it does sound beautiful. But is it truly for you? What exactly is its appeal?
Your mission today is to find out how and to what extent you should simplify your life.
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Task 1: A minimalist fairytale?
Like most fairytales, it isn’t quite as ideal as it sounds. Some people who have taken the leap, speak of loneliness, having no internet, getting older with nobody to look after them.
Exactly how simple should your life be, then? I believe it helps to write down what exactly appeals to you about the simple countryside life. Here are some examples that may or may not apply:
- more quiet
- more nature
- fewer people and more meaningful connections
- fewer expectations
- less stress and pressure
Also write down – and be very honest here – what you don’t want to miss from your current life. For me, that would be:
- decent internet
- culture (exhibitions, concerts…)
- medical care
Task 2: Create your own simple life
Now you have a few clues as to what you want. A lot of them are achievable without moving to the middle of nowhere. I still think I’ll do it some day, but in the meantime, I’ve implemented steps that have simplified my life right here and now.
- declutter and become a minimalist
- significantly reduce your online time and engagement
- make a point of connecting with people you love
- regularly spend time in nature.
Think of concrete steps to implement these things, and plan them for this week, and then take it from there.