Why did I downsize to a small studio apartment at this point in my life? It’s because I enjoy living my life. My home is my shelter, and as such I found a home which fulfills that need and nothing more.
Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music. Ronald Reagan
My favorite season, summer, officially arrived yesterday. Everyone has a favorite season, for some it’s spring when everything begins to come back to life in blooming color, for some it’s fall for the crisp days and the vibrant colors we are surrounded with. I appreciate each of those seasons, but for me summer wins hands down, it’s never too cold be outside as long as I want, which for me usually means most of the day. I enjoyed reading the ten free things Vanessa plans to do this summer which includes many things I also enjoy doing.
We often find so many ways to while away what free time we have. Here are a few I have found myself doing in the past:
- Watching TV, even when there was nothing of interest to me on it
- Curling up with a book to the exclusion of other activities. Don’t get me wrong a good book is a wonderful treat
- Eating convenience foods, that really didn’t taste much like food, simply because I told myself I was tired that day
When I let myself fall into a rut of channel surfing, for example, it usually included other things at the same time. The average American spends 4.5 hours a day watching TV and yes there were times in my life that I fell into that category of the average American. While I was telling myself I was tired and deserved a little mindless down-time, I was eating a frozen prepared dinner or takeout. If I had only turned off the television I could have put on some music and enjoyed the process of making a dinner that was actually tasty.
When I first got rid of my television, for the last time, I found time to make a healthy meal, time to exercise, time to relax. I found the time to realize how much I really did have and found I had enough. What I didn’t have any longer was the excuse that I didn’t have enough time in my day to take care of myself.
Those who know they have enough are rich—Lao Tzu
When I moved into my tiny apartment, I found time to enjoy the outdoors again freed from the demands to keep up a larger home. With summer here, my home has again been restored to a place I go to sleep, eat, and be protected from the weather and just enough space to comfortably entertain a few guests. The indoor space has become my haven, a place that feels comforting when I enter. the difference between a cluttered home and a home filled with only the things you need was expressed so wonderfully by Jill Foley that I couldn’t say it better.
Now rather than finding me stuck indoors, you will find me outside enjoying the company of others, taking a relaxing stroll through local trails, enjoying the sand and beach of the lake across the street, or yes, sitting in a field with a good book to the symphony of the birds which feel almost like it is for me exclusively.
Plenty of others are finding the enjoyment and pure pleasure of simple living. Rhonda reflects on a decade of simple living and the contentment she found. Marc and Angel share their top 30 simple pleasures.
I hereby pledge to slow my life down a gear for the benefit of my health, my well-being, my environment, and for those around me whom I dearly love.
——–Tracy Smith, The Downshifting Manifesto
I think Tracy Smith said it well, this is why I moved to a tiny studio apartment, to be free to live life for myself and those I love.
What was the turning point for you to seek a better situation for yourself and your family?