Yesterday, October 30, 2013, I said goodbye to what had been my home for 18 years. Having a peaceful, safe home that I knew was mine was important to me as I became an adult. My family moved around a lot as a kid, so there wasn’t ever consistency of a place that held memories. My home on the outskirts of Kansas City became that place for my extended family, friends and of course my immediate family and our fur-babies. I will miss the acreage, the trees, sunrises and sunsets across the fields, and the deer. I will miss the peace and serenity, the coziness, and space to entertain. So why did my family and I decide to leave?
It started in January of 2012 when I attended the white stone ceremony at our church. It is a tradition where each congregant picks up a white stone that has a word on it. It is something to consider as you begin the New Year. My word was “simple.” I spent much of 2012 meditating on simple, keeping things simple, not over-complicating things, looking for ways to simplify, noticing when my life felt chaotic, or the opposite of simple. You may have heard me talk about being simple and consistent with your wellness journey.
Three things popped up during that year that dovetailed with the simple theme. I remembered my friend Sally talking about creating a life so that you’re the one living it. In other words, sometimes we create these great big, huge lives that require that all sorts of things get handled for us. Sure we have stuff and we get to have awesome experiences at times; but we’re not really living a day to day life and enjoying the nuances of what life is really all about. Instead we’re living a calendar that affords us the stuff and the people to take care of the stuff and help us run our calendar. What’s the point?
The second thing that made me pause came in the form of a question. I was asked, “What is your perfect day?” Well, um, I’m not sure. As I thought about it and really mapped out my perfect day (which I later laid out in my mini-book Engage a Wellness Lifestyle that you can download here), it really didn’t resemble my actual life. I was too busy for my perfect day. It made me think of the third thing that gave me permission to simplify – something Barnett Helzberg of HEMP said to me once. He said, “You are the ultimate decision maker of your life.” Simple and true words, yet they are all too often forgotten. So I started shifting things around, saying no, and reprioritizing so that I could get closer to my perfect day more often, and once in a while even accomplish it. It helped me simplify my calendar and my expectations for how to spend my time.
Throughout 2012 and 2013 I have been refocusing the vision for my business and how I share my message of wellness with the world. We’ve been streamlining and finding new ways to provide all the services in easier ways. In my life, my family and I have also been looking for ways to simplify and right-size our life. We’ve made a number of changes. The crown jewel of those changes was to leave our lovely yet huge home and downsize to something that was just enough. This move won’t likely be our last as we use this next year to figure out what’s next. This move has also allowed us to bless and release our stuff and house to others that will find joy in them.
I was reminded of so many memories in the final weeks leading up to the move. It made me realize even more that truly home is where the heart is. Yes, eighteen years saw many house guests, parties, dinners, movie nights, football and basketball watch parties, holidays, our fur-babies chasing one another, and so on. Those things will still happen even if on a different scale and in a different space. And in the meantime, by right-sizing, or simplifying, I gain a new level of peace and serenity that comes from within, not just from the scenery out the window.
How can you soak up the joys of your life? Are you truly living as the ultimate decision maker of your life? What’s your perfect day? How can you simplify? How can you right-size?