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How Living Simply Gives You The Freedom To Simply Live

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[1:00] Minimalism is super trendy right now. So are tiny houses, capsule wardrobes, and simple eating. With all the hype surrounding simple living, it can be hard to cut through the fluff and lingo to the heart of what living simply actually means.

My favorite definition says:

“Minimalism is the intentional promotion of the things we most value and the removal of everything that distracts us from it.”

Joshua Becker

You see, simplicity is all about being intentional.

There are no rules about the number of things you can own. How big your house should be. Whether or not you have to have a capsule wardrobe. Or what hours you can eat and what food should be on your plate. 

Because there’s no freedom in trading your clutter for a whole new set of rules to keep you chained. 

Simplicity is all about being intentional. 

It’s not letting this world dictate what you own, what you spend your time on, or the stories you tell yourself.

It’s about letting go of expectation, comparison, and all the should-dos we’re bombarded with these days, and choosing a life that lights your soul on fire.

Minimalism doesn’t mean you live with nothing. It means you live with the things that matter. 

And that, my friends, is where true freedom is found.

But how do we live it out practically?

As with so many things in life, there isn’t a one-size fits all formula. This is your life and it needs to suit your wants and needs. 

I’m going to lay out the basics here, but please remember that this is a huge subject, and I’m only going to skim the surface. If you want other resources or direction on where to go to seek more in-depth information, please feel free to shoot me an email or send me a DM on Instagram, and I’ll do my best to direct you to influencers who have a life-giving perspective on simplicity. 

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Let’s get started with the easiest step:

[4:18] Simplify Your Home 

I say easy, but only because the things you’re dealing with are tangible. You can make a lot of headway before you ever have to start digging deep into the emotional baggage that got you here in the first place. 

Which you will eventually have to do if you want more than a surface declutter.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves. 

[4:39] In my opinion, the best place to start is by removing the visual clutter on the surfaces of your home, because the progress you’re making is out on display and will motivate you to keep going when the going gets hard.

And it will. 

As with all things in life. Motivation wanes, so you’ve got to remember why you started in the first place. For me, it was because I was tired of cleaning up after my life and ready to start living it.

After decluttering the surfaces, take it one room at a time, asking yourself the question: do I know this item to be useful or believe it to be beautiful? 9 times out of 10 it will reveal whether or not it deserves to take up your time, energy, and space.

If you’re anything like me, you’ll tear through your home, ready for a fresh start, getting rid of old broken things and clothes that no longer fit. But when it comes to momentos and art work and things you spent a descent amount of money on, you’ll hesitate. 

This, my friend, is because clutter isn’t only your physical baggage. It’s emotional baggage as well. 

Your things can be all tied up in memories, and people, and guilt.

Maybe you inherited something, and it’s all you have left of a beloved family member. Maybe someone you care about gave you a gift, and you’re worried about hurting their feelings. Maybe you bought something as retail therapy, and getting rid of it feels like waste. 

[6:22] Here are two pieces of truth I want you to remember when you get to this point:

First, you’re either winning or you’re learning. It’s not a failure to admit that something you once spent money on is no longer serving you well. It’s simply a lesson you’ll carry with you into the future. Because when you know better, you do better, and you won’t want to fill your home with things that don’t bring you life again. 

Second, you don’t have to deal with it right now. This whole process is very emotional. Full of hope and excitement but also anxiety and fear. It’s okay, maybe even better, to wait until you have more emotional bandwidth to make the harder decisions. 

Simplicity has a snowball effect, and as you get deeper into this lifestyle, you’ll eventually want to come back and tie up all the loose ends.

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Which brings me to the next step:

[7:07] Simplify Your Head

We live in such a loud time. Full of distractions and busyness. If we really want to focus our attention on the things that matter to us, we have to find a way to quiet all the noise. 

This is a really big topic, so I’m just going to quickly go through some of the things that have the potential to make the biggest impact. 

[8:19] The first thing I’d recommend is taking a digital detox. Start with a screen-free weekend, and work up to a long term tech break to recalibrate and get a fresh perspective on what it looks like to lead a quieter life. 

This can be hard at first, especially if you’ve never done it before. Whether you feel you’re addicted to social media and streaming or not, simply breaking the habit of reaching for your phone all the time is tough!

It gives you a whole new perspective on our device dependency.

Yes, we are certainly blessed by the ease and convenience that comes with modern technology, but a tech detox will, at the very least, give you more insight into our deeply ingrained device dependency.

If you want more of a guided journey through taking a digital detox, I’d really recommend checking out The 40 Day Social Media Fast from Wendy Speake. It’s life changing!

[9:06] The second thing I’d suggest doing is creating a schedule that reflects your priorities. 

Cut out everything you’re currently doing out of habit or obligation because those are the things that steal your joy and keep you from focusing on what matters.

Remember, even good things can become distractions if they aren’t serving you well in this particular season. It’s okay to pivot. It’s okay to change your mind. It’s even okay to quit when something you thought would be worthwhile just isn’t anymore. 

Instead, I’d challenge you to start thinking about the legacy you want to leave, and begin actively taking steps to align your schedule with your goals and vision for your life.

The very best tool I’ve found to help you streamline this process is Lara Casey’s Powersheets.

[9:55] The third way you can begin to cut through the noise and distraction is by setting boundaries. 

We’ve talked about tech and time boundaries, but I want to specifically address people boundaries here. Though, I’ll admit, I’m not very good at this. 

I’m a people pleaser by nature, but I’ve had to learn the hard way that if I don’t guard my time, I’ll never make progress on the things I’ve been called to do, or the legacy I want to leave. 

What’s really helped me here is discovering that boundaries aren’t just to protect me and my time. They help my relationships flourish because both people grow a healthy respect and admiration for one another without bitterness and resentment taking root.

A really good resource that I’m using right now is the book Boundaries by Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend. Maybe once I get a little farther down this path, we’ll do an episode about it!

[10:46] Simplify Your Heart

Oh, sweet friend. Is this as hard for you as it is for me?

I had a less than ideal childhood, and I prefer to leave the past in the past. I really resonate with this quote from Finnick in Mockingjay, the third Hunger Games book:  

“It takes ten times as long to put yourself back together as it does to fall apart.”

Suzanne collins

And I’ve lived that way for a long time. But over the last few years, I’ve also come to realize that sometimes you don’t get a choice. 

The wounds from your past may heal, but they leave scars. And they seem to ache and burn at the most inconvenient moments.

It’s easy to feel like we don’t have time to deal with the issues that bubble up, so we just keep moving forward, but there comes a time when you actually have to deal with your heart hurts, and you’ll need the space to do it without being pulled in a million other directions.

I’ve heard lots of different Pastors say that there’s a God shaped hole in every one of us. We try to fill it with sugar and food, social media and shopping, unhealthy relationships and sex. But at the end of the day, what we’re all actually seeking is fulfillment. 

We all want that one thing… that something that will satisfy our longings. But it’s not out there. Because the world will always leave us thirsting for more. Only God truly satisfies what our souls are seeking. And only God can heal the heart wounds that run deeper than the surface.

I believe simplicity is the way we cut through all the noise, so we can hear that still small voice, and then intentionally pursue the path that He sets us upon. 

[12:16] The Short And Sweet

Simplicity is something I’m super passionate about because I truly believe it gives us the freedom to simply live.

It’s not as easy as adopting a new decorating style or throwing out everything you own to live in a 500 square foot Manhattan apartment.

It’s about really weeding out everything that distracts you from living a life that you love. It takes courage and discipline to let go of the things that have cluttered up your head, heart, and home. But it’s so, so worth it when what you’re left with are the things that matter for crafting an intentional life!

Resources we talked about in this episode…

Powersheets by Lara Casey

The More of Less by Joshua Becker

The 40 Day Social Media Fast by Wendy Speake

Boundaries by Drs. Henry Cloud and John Townsend

Breathe Life Into Your Home By Decluttering the Surfaces

Simplify Your Mom Life 7 Day Email Challenge

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Unbusy Your Mom Life!

Hey mama, I see you – hustling hard. Doing all.the.things. But mom life doesn’t have to be ruled by your to-do list. Let me show you how to Take Back Your Time with my FREE toolkit!

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