Tuesday, October 12, 2010

South + Simplifying

I have just recently moved to the beautiful state of North Carolina, which in case you didn't know is considered part of the south, according to wiki.  (Trust me it was a surprise to me too). 

Just because my mind works in weird ways I'm introducing the second half of the blog name first.  I think because being in the south has been forefront in my mind and quite an adjustment.  More on this later.
From wiki: The states in dark red are almost always included in modern day definitions of the South.  The arrow is my new location. 
As with most moves, I am starting a new chapter, turning over a new life.  Continuing to learn new things and trying to challenge myself to not get stuck in the complacency of life.  This is where the simplifying part comes in.

Merriam-Webster defines simplify as "to reduce to basic essentials; to diminish in scope or complexity; to make more intelligible".  So this is currently what I am working toward.  I am not so sure about the more intelligible part, but definitely the part about diminishing and reducing.  Learning how the definition of simplifying can apply to my own life.

The idea of simplifying hit my radar when my better half sent me an article from The New York Times "But will it make you happy?" by Stephanie Rosenbloom.
My better half
 The article discusses a lot of important points about simplifying, with a few hitting home with me:

*The American Dream--buying with out regard.  Our society today is seeped in consumerism, trying to keep up with the Joneses.  And I am guilty as the next guy or gal.

*It's about experiences--not material objects.  Research proves people have amplified happiness when they go through experiences, more so than if they make a material purchase.

*Anticipation increases happiness.  We are such an instant gratification society.  This is one that I struggle with the most.  Patience is definitely not a virtue I have.

(I'll have post about each of these different points later)

So taking the article and mulling over it for a quite a while I realized I must simplify my life.  I wanted to challenge myself and take the journey.  One of the topics covered in the article was about the 100 thing challenge.  Dave Bruno began this grass-roots movement about living with only 100 personal items.  You should stop by and check out his ideas and see how he possibly managed.  I was inspired by Dave's journey and the 100 thing challenge is one part of simplifying I am currently working on.  Most definitely more on this later.

But to me this journey is more than just whittling my belongings down to 100 things.  I am interested in simplifying in my career, how I buy groceries, how simplifying can free my life up for fun things, etc.  So I'll share ideas/recipes/meanderings and hope you will too.  Feel free to comment, share ideas, or give me suggestions about posts you would like to see.  I hope my journey will inspire you to reflect on your own life and how simplifying can apply.  We are all in this community together.


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