Free shipping on orders over $75! Use code FREESHIP75
lark-blog

Embracing Simple.

Lisa Dolan

 

I began my journey with minimalism a few years back, before I actually knew what minimalism really was. I stumbled across this book and movement and felt a huge pull towards living a leaner and more meaningful life. I wanted to spend my time and money on travel and family instead of stuff and status. Living simpler seemed like it should be, well, simple - but I found it was a lot harder than I expected. Flash forward 2 years later and I had a small son, a Mom battling terminal cancer, plus a busy career - minimalism seemed impossible. I was never much of a spender, but I did always like to find a “deal.” I’m easily lured into stores like Marshalls and TJ Maxx where I can find a great deal on something that I don’t actually need. When my mom got sick I found myself using shopping as an escape. It filled this awful void that nothing else could fill and was a much needed distraction from life - which at the time felt unbearable. A few months after my mom passed away I found myself doing a lot of meditation. I thought a lot about  my mom and how hard she worked. She spent her life working to provide for her family. She worked until she couldn’t physically stand up and walk out the door anymore. I know she had big plans for her retirement. There was always this idea of a “someday,” where she’d be able to relax and enjoy her life. She was 57 when she died. She never got to enjoy what she had worked so hard for. It hit me that all this junk that we accumulate is robbing us of our life. The future isn’t a promise.

 

For the past few months I’ve been recommitting myself to living simpler. I’ve made a few small changes each day that I feel are starting to add up. I’ve got a loooong way to go, and I may be on this journey for years but it feels good to be moving forward. It feels great to purge. I’ve started to set a few small goals for myself each week that I’d love to share to inspire others on their minimalism journey. A few past goals (and ongoing goals) are:

 

  1. Set a space to purge each week. This can be something small like a closet, or something larger like an entire room or area of the home.
  2. Make 2 trips per week to donation centers or resale shops (I have two large tupperware containers that I aim to fill each week with things to donate or sell).
  3. Stop purchasing books. I’m a huge book hoarder so this has been a tough one for me. Instead of buying a book off Amazon Prime, I’ve been going to our local Library. I’m kind of shocked at the positive effect this has made on my life. I find myself finishing more books because of the time constraints, plus it’s been a great way to teach my son about sharing and community. It’s been a win-win.
  4. Meditate. This one can be tricky to stick with. My schedule is all over the place and oftentimes I find myself forgetting to set aside the time to meditate. I’ve had a pretty solid meditation practice for the last few years, but if you are new to meditation you can find some of my favorite resources here, here and here. I recommend starting with some guided meditations. I find that more than anything it helps me to set an intention for my life and to return to it on a regular basis. It’s so easy to find yourself wishing for something you don’t have or having unrealistic expectations. Meditation seems to bring me back to reality and put into focus what my motivations and desires truly are. It’s been a game changer for me.
  5. Kundalini Yoga. Similar to Meditation this has also been a huge game changer. I hope to blog more on this and my practice later, but I highly recommend checking out this and this to start.
  6. Set a goal. Having a goal to look forward to is so important. It can be simple or complex. I have a few small goals (like taking off on Sunday) and larger goals (saving money for a big trip, etc.) It’s helpful to write these goals down and come back to them frequently to stay motivated. Streamlining your life and cutting back can drastically increase the amount of time and money you have. Every time I feel like I’m making a small “sacrifice” I try to look at the big picture. A designer purse might be awesome right now, but a trip to Italy is a million times better.

 

There are some incredible and inspiring books on living simpler. One of my favorites is Unstuff Your Life. While it’s probably more of an organization book, it gives you a detailed day to day description of what to do to clear clutter and let go of all the “stuff.” It digs deep to get to your true motivators and uncover your purpose for living simpler. This is one of the few books I recommend purchasing a hard copy of because there are a ton of exercises included that you’ll need to write down answers to. It’s also helpful to come back to and have your responses all in one place. This book is also wonderful and a great place to start. Another great source of inspiration for me is my amazing friend Dacy of Mindful Closet. Her blog is one of my favorites and is so relatable!

 

I’d love to hear about your journey to simpler living - what have you found helpful, what would you love to hear more about?


Leave a Comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published