Here in the early dusk of morning (my favorite part of the day), I'm in a bit of a contemplative mood. Thoughts are flitting about like little birds: ideas, possibilities, tasks - things that might take hold and become something; things that might be considered for a moment, then let go. A certain thread runs through them, however, the ever-present one of thoughtful living, of cultivating a purety in lifestyle and choices. This personal aspiration, indeed, becomes the filter through which everything passes. And I find something interesting. In all my writing over the years about simplicity and living well, I've found that it's easy to believe that once such a noble goal has been embarked upon, the living of it must be simple, too. Ah, if only it were. If we're honest, life-keeping can be anything but.
Like you, I deal with the everyday jumble. Ours involves multiple people living under one roof with mulitple schedules trying to mesh. Then there's housekeeping, and lawnkeeping, and budgetkeeping, and kidkeeping, and laundry. And we haven't even begun to talk about work (which has gotten even more interesting since all five of us are now employed). And just when you feel like life feels neither simple nor well, there's that one thing that seems like the lifeline in the middle of the ocean. Something seemingly thin and insignificant, yet having the potential to save your life. I think it's safe to say, it's a good thing there's both. Because it's in the engagement and in the relief that we find the treasures and nuances of life.
So, how about this: I'll share one thing that's been a recent challenge for me in living the simple life, and another thing that's been my lifeline. Then it's your turn. Share in the comments so we can all find some bolstering on this midweek day.
Challenge: The regular purging that's necessary to maintaining a streamlined life is still surprising to me. I've found it difficult to find time (and motivation) for this mundane task in the middle of summer when I'd rather spend extra minutes doing summery things.
Lifeline: Two simple gifts from my evening self that I find in the morning are vacuumed floors and clean, empty kitchen sinks. I used to do a quick-sweep of the floors in the morning after breakfast, but a recent change to a quick vacuum in the evening has made all the difference. Likewise, my habit has always been a clean kitchen after dinner, but the tiny inclusion of putting the clean dishes away and polishing the sink has felt like it's changed everything. Entering a room first thing in the morning that's tidy and kept is, for me, like that first glass of water - essential for feeling refreshed and able to function at my best. It helps me feel centered before I lean into my day.
Now you. Go!