Monday, April 27, 2015

A Simplified Life

What does it mean to simplify your life? 
A lot of people ask this question. A lot of people ponder it. Some even live by a standard or code of living, because of it. I'll be honest. I've not found one answer to this question that I am 100% comfortable with. Maybe that is because life isn't and shouldn't ever really be simple or easy. We will always have trials and stress, no matter what road we take in life. Life is full of complicated events. But, there are many people who have given their take on what it means and have written about it. Some of the things they have written have, in my opinion, been hogwash. But, some writings have really gotten my attention. I'm not saying I agree with everything that these people wrote, but they have brought up some great points to consider in this life.
Here are a few blogs/articles and a short review of what each wrote about. Some of them may make you chuckle in disbelief and ask yourself, "Do people really fall for this?" (click on the light orange colored titles to go to the websites):

The simplified life: Helping you ditch the stuff and simplify your life.   
  • spend only what you have. 
  • buy only what you need. 
  • keep only what you truly love. 
  • leave only a small “footprint”.
Simplify Life: 
"When you learn how to say yes to the things you want in your life and no to the things you don't want in your life – your life becomes simpler.

Simplify 101: Life is more fulfilling (and fun!) when you’re organized in a way that’s just right for you. If you  create customized organizing systems that cut clutter and reduce stress, giving you more time for what matters most to you.

Simplify Your Life… if we were committed to make a serious effort to simplify our lives today, our communication to the Universe would be more streamlined, clear, and just plane simple. not only will you feel better, the Universe will be able to hear your requests and desires regarding attracting abundance. (Hmmm...makes me wonder if people actually have conversations with the "Universe".)

World Education Network: Simplifying your life can be essentially broken into two phases:
1)   Figuring out what’s important to you
2)   Eliminating everything that’s not important

 "What Does It Mean to Simplify?" by  "Lisa Smith" - This concept is often traced back to author and philosopher Henry David Thoreau and his retreat to Walden Pond. The writer lived on the shores of Walden Pond for two years in the mid-1800s, isolating himself from the bustle of society in order to gain greater perspective on life. His exile gave Thoreau insight into the value of nature, solitude and contemplation and allowed him to distance himself from the consumerism and materialism that had already begun to dominate American life. (By the way, I went and checked "Lisa Smith's name on the bio page by her name above and Lisa appears to be a "he", who is highly involved in the corporate world. Interesting!!)

The Art of Simple: We define “simple living” this way: living holistically with your life’s purpose. 
Most things about living simply are gray, but we believe these things are black and white:
1. People are more important than things.
2. People can live on and with far less than mainstream cultural norms lead us to believe.
3. Debt is not a tool, and instead puts people in needless bondage.
4. Quality is more important than quantity in almost every facet of life, from tangible possessions, to relationships, to aesthetics.
5. Life is not about consumption, and our daily choices regarding time, energy, money, the environment, relationships, and the stewardship of our resources matter for eternity.
6. The definition of living simply is “living holistically with your life’s purpose.” All the parts of your life are pointed in the same direction, towards who you are and what you were made to do
Huff Post: 9 Things People Realized When They Simplified Their Lives - 

  • It isn't all about the money.
  • If you're bored, you're doing something wrong.
  • Losing your job could be a blessing in disguise.
  • Traveling can expand your horizons.
  • Having lots of "stuff" doesn't necessarily make you feel fulfilled.
  • It's important to find the right pace to fit your life.
  • Success isn't limited to the top of the corporate ladder.
  • There's no time to live like the present.
  • You can choose happiness in any situation.

Trails of Life:   6 Bible Verses that Simplify Life   - Focus on the eternal. Set your mind on the important things that will count for eternity. Much of what we strive for or worry about now won’t mean a hill of beans once we’ve left this earth. I don’t mean to imply they will be easy to apply. But applying them is what makes them work. And surely they will lead the way to more peace in this life.

  1. One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple. Psalm 27:4 (NIV)
  2. Jesus looked at him and loved him. “One thing you lack,” he said. “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”Mark 10:21 (NIV)
  3. “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” Luke 10:41-42 (NIV)
  4. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus Philippians 3:12-14
  5. Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
  6. Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. Hebrews 12:1,2

Charisma Magazine: Simplify Your Life: BY JOYCE MEYER

Be decisive. Whatever you need to do in life, just do it—and keep it simple. “Let go and let God be God” really is a good idea. It immediately simplifies any situation, no matter how difficult. We need to do what we can and then cast the rest, along with our cares, on God.  from Joyce Meyer's book,"100 Ways to Simplfy Your Life

ChristianPF writes: How Would You Handle a Simple Lifestyle?" Simplicity is not always our reaction to negative events in our lives. While many Americans are forced to live a lesser standard of living, others are embracing a new and simpler lifestyle. Simplicity has many rewards that go beyond saving money. Among those may be the experience of living well.”

From Good Girl StyleSimplify to Exemplify - Her new motto is: Simplify Your Life to Exemplify Christ. We need to have our lives ordered: temples of God, where there is space for Him to enter, without us needing to sweep an armful of junk aside. 

From Women With Intention: 31 Days of Intentional Living Simple living to me means intentionally slowing down to savor life because you have trimmed out the excess.  It is keeping what I love and eliminating or cutting back on the rest.  That  includes the “stuff” in our lives.  Whether it is physical clutter in our homes like too many clothes, toys, or gadgets, clutter on the calendar with busy schedules and activities, or clutter that causes stress such as credit card debt- all of this stuff keeps us in bondage from our priorities and from accomplishing our goals.

What does it mean to you to have a simplified life?
Have a blessed week! 

Linking up at these blog hops:


  1. Wow! This took a lot of research. I love the thought of living life at a pace that is right for you. Not everyone will be the same. I really need to simplify!

    I hope you can stop by:


    1. Yes, I am realizing the different paths that a simplified life can take for each of us. My hubby and I are SO considering the idea of traveling in a small campervan with a simple budget most of the year, once he retires in a few years. Not for everyone, for sure, but one we would love doing!

  2. Lots of good stuff, Ann! I am in a simplifying time in my life right now. I think it looks a bit different for everyone. Your concepts are right on, and I appreciate all of your research.

    1. I really enjoyed researching what people thought about simplifying one's life. I think many people are considering how to live more simply, as we see how our society and our world is so wasteful and unpredictable. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. This article is right on time. I have been doing just that simplifying. Sometimes it is so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life.

    1. Definitely, Betty! I have to constantly remind myself what is truly important in life. Investing too much in this life and the temporary '"things" just is not worth all the stress and strain to have them. God is the only secure and sure thing!! Hope your simplification of life frees you up and encourages you!

  4. Thanks for this. I am at a place where God is asking me to clear stuff out that I don't need/use that someone else DOES need. This just puts it in my path again, to remind me that God is indeed leading me that direction. Thank you!

    1. Boy, you hit the nail right on the head, Dana! When I think of all the extras that clutter up my life and how so many people would do anything to have half of what I have been blessed with, it puts everything into perspective for me. Blessings to you in your journey of simplifying your life more.

  5. I love your graphic and your theme. You are extremely thorough in your research! I'm your neighbor at the Faith Barista's link up today! Blessings!

    1. Thanks, Michele! Lately, I have found the theme to be a new passion of mine. Thanks for stopping over!

  6. Hmmm. There are some interesting ideas in this. Because the thoughts are so diverse - from silly to serious, it makes me realize how over burdened and stressed out our society really is! I don't think that being busy always makes life complicated, though it can. But, I think that, for me anyway, when I feel that things are spinning around me, I have lost focus. When I feel things aren't simple is when I've not taken the time to be still before the Lord. I can sit around and watch TV or something and still feel that things are complicated. But, when I take the time to talk to be quiet before Him and to lean into Him, my life becomes much more simple. He has a wonderful way of lifting burdens, doesn't He? When I come before Him, He gently (and sometimes not so gently) points me in the direction I need to go. And when I know and am on His path, I feel at peace.

    All for Him, Joan

    1. Yeah, What has amazed me the most is how everyone who wrote about it viewed "a simplified life" differently. It seems that you view it more of a "peace within" that only comes from the Lord. Truly, His peace in our lives makes our path much more calm and less stressful! My understanding of it has more to do with the human difficulties that life on earth brings...maybe that's due to my job. Since I continually am updating our church prayer list and keeping record of our financial support to those in need in our community, I literally hear and write about the hardships (both physical and financial) that people go through. Some of them are unavoidable, but many times we bring our difficulties on ourselves, by not being responsible or wise in our decisions. As long as we do our best to live a life that pleases God, first and foremost, and then love others second, life does seem to be simpler. It's really all about our perspective and priorities in life. thanks for sharing, Joan!! Blessings to you, sister!


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