9 Ways to Live a Simpler Life
Living a simpler life is something many of us dream of – from having fewer possessions to finding more time for the things we love. Having more free time, more meaningful relationships, and less stress can all be benefits of living a simpler life. While it may seem like an impossible goal, there are actually ways to reduce the complexity in your life and start to enjoy the benefits of a simpler way of living.
How Can I Live a Simple Life in A Modern World?
Living a simplified life takes some courage. Your family may not understand why you are forgoing a job promotion with a huge pay increase and loads of extra responsibilities. Friends will question why you stopped joining in on conversations on social media. You may find that some may question your sanity as you pay off debt and sell your large home for a smaller one. Yes, choosing to live a simpler life will raise a few eyebrows from your relationship circles. Modern life’s conveniences are supposed to make life easier, but that is not always true.
Modern life is likely to get in the way when you have had enough and decide to join the growing ranks of people aiming for a simpler life. Here are some practical ways you can grab onto the simple life in a modern world.
- Determine your priorities based on your values. What is important to you and your family? What do you want to achieve? What does a simple life look like to you? Once you determine your values, decisions become more straightforward. You say yes to those things that align with your goals and no to those that don’t.
- Reign in the digital noise. Smartphones are wonderful tools that should be just that – tools. Ease tension in your life by turning off notifications when you are at dinner or in bed. You might even remove all social media apps from your phone. Unsubscribe from emails lists that do not serve your mission and reply to emails only once per day, not as soon as one comes in.
- Declutter your home. By removing unnecessary stuff, you open up your home for those possessions you genuinely love or need. You can start small, like in a junk drawer and then move onto your wardrobe. You will feel freer as possessions no longer weigh you down.
- Live within your means. A simple life is one free from the stress of making money to pay bills and buy more stuff. When you are in debt, your stress levels elevate. Instead, pay down debt and learn to live within your means. You will quickly learn to enjoy life without struggling with debt.
- Opt for a basic cell phone. Consider how many interruptions you have from notifications on your smartphone. They are distracting and force you to be continually distracted. Look for a cell phone with which you can only make and receive calls. The price will be much cheaper, and your stress levels will decrease.
- Pay off your credit cards. Debt leaves you a slave to the credit card company. They become a burden when you don’t pay them off each month. Use them only to buy what you can afford to pay off when the bill comes in, not to overspend.
- Drop cable service. Many spend over $100 a month on hundreds of channels they never watch. Why do this when over-the-air stations are free and streaming services are incredibly cheap? You can use your savings to pay off your credit cards.
- Become comfortable with being alone. The constant stimulation of technology and people cause us to be uncomfortable with being alone. You do not have to head out to an isolated mountain cabin and live as a hermit. However, as you learn to sit in the quiet with only yourself as company, you learn to relax and listen to what your body is trying to tell you. You might find a good friend in yourself.
- Remember that living a simple life is your choice. You do not have to live a complicated, stressful life just because your friends and family do. It is possible to choose a different path that aligns with your values.
Ways a Simple Life Leads to Happiness
Many people are unhappy, but they don’t understand why. They bought into the hype of working a lucrative job that enables them to buy big houses filled with tons of stuff. They have the latest gadgets that connect them to family, friends, and frenemies through social media. If they have all of these goodies, why are they unhappy?
You may be in this predicament and wondering how you can stop the merry-go-round of an overwhelming life. You might have entertained the idea of cutting back and trying this thing called a simple life, but will it make you happy?
Choosing a simple life might be the best decision you could make. There are many benefits, including that you can become happier. Here is how:
- You become healthier. When you are healthy, you tend to feel happier. The stress of owning too many things can cause you to lose sleep, have digestive issues, stop exercising and eat poorly. How? You spend more time working to pay for all of the stuff instead of putting your health first. You may worry about your belongings, which can increase feelings of anxiety. Poor health does not lead to a happy person.
- You enjoy the small things in life. Complicated lives produce harried people, not happy ones. You can slow down and take in the world around you when you let go. The simple pleasures like feeling the sunshine on your face bring lasting happiness to our lives.
- You become more grateful. Dumping all the junk and clutter allows you to slow down and focus on your actual needs. Soon, you will find those things to be thankful for, such as your good health. Gratitude provides a pathway to happiness.
- You connect deeply with your family and friends. As social beings, we need people. When you are flitting from one activity to the next, you have little time to focus on relationships. You may feel disconnected, and your relationships may suffer. Simplifying your life paves the way to spend more time with those you love. Deeper relationships leave you feeling satisfied and happier.
- You can work less and still satisfy your basic needs. Simple living leads you down new paths of discovery of your actual needs. You may learn that you can live with much less, such as food, clothing, and shelter, which means you can choose a less stressful job, working fewer hours.
Live the simple life on your terms, not based on what the modern world thinks. Learn to live with some cutback, and you will be on your way to a life of serenity. Embrace the simple life by figuring out your values and then take the necessary steps to live them out. Happiness doesn’t have to elude you. By choosing a simple life, you give yourself the best opportunity to be happy and live life to the fullest. You will be reaping the benefits of this change before you know it.