So, since posting yesterday about my current state of emotional breakdown I thought I should probably clarify why I’m embarking on this journey to a simpler and more joyful life.
I already live a fairly simple life, Why am I seeking to simplify it further? What do I hope to achieve? And why do I want to write about it?
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.
Life need not be complicated. It is often messy, painful, beautiful and overwhelming but it can still be simple and a whole lot easier than we often make it.
To live a simple life, one must find out what is most important and strip away everything else.
One way to express it might be to find what you love and go and do that, wholeheartedly, completely and authentically. Ultimately to be yourself, who you were born to be, who you have a right to be, in all your glory with all your unique gifts and talents and wisdom, all your flaws and wounds and dark places, without the masks and the judgements. It’s simple but it’s not straightforward, and being a parent can complicate things even further.
What I’m working towards through simplifying the everyday is an even deeper connection.
A deeper connection to my family, to myself and to the very essence of this thing we call life.
A deeper connection to those of you kind enough to take the time to read my writing.
A deeper connection to what I have known in my heart for such a long time is my true purpose.
For me, the thing I have most resisted in my life is having children. It was my biggest fear, it contains my oldest wounds and it is by far the hardest thing I have ever done. Not the being pregnant bit, nor even the giving birth bit. Those were a relative doddle compared to the everyday transformation that takes places now these little souls are part of my life.
Children are such a huge gift, they come and they teach you everything you ever need to learn about yourself and what’s getting in the way of you fully realising your potential. You can avoid all the self-help books and self-development workshops and just have kids…it gets to the heart of things so much more elegantly and, if you’re not listening, it just smacks you in the face, usually at 5am, so you have to take notice.
I now know that having children, and everything they facilitate, is my purpose. Now that I can fully own that, I can focus on the simple business of finding more peace with it and from that peace ultimately joy. Because it’s not a given, being happy and joyful, I mean. It takes work, even with these little beings of pure light and love as my example, it takes a lot of work just to be happy some days.
I want to relish again in the inspiration and ease that comes with only doing that which is truly meaningful and important. That flow and synchronicity was the hallmark of my time running my last business. But mostly I want peace, an even deeper peace that I can call up within me, surround myself with and extend to those around me in those testing times, when all is not rosy in the garden and all is not well with the world.
The world is so deeply troubled and if I am to help raise peacemakers of the future, in whatever form they take, then that peace must be sure within myself and be the pad-stones of our home life.
At the moment it’s more like the crazy lady has visited and settled in for the duration and my poor family don’t know if they are coming or going.
I’m also doing this because, since leaving the corporate world behind some 15 years ago, I have firmly and consciously put wellbeing at the heart of who I am and what I do. I have been given a very clear signal that all is not as well as it could be. If I am to continue to put health and wellness within the heart of our family, I need to pay attention to that.
But why write about it? I could go on this little journey by myself as I have done in the past. There is something within me that leans away from all this vacuous self-disclosure that seems to be the hallmark of our social-media-obsessed times.
Writing, like motherhood, is the other thing I have resisted hugely in my life and that tells me it must be important.
I am surrounded by writers. I always have been and that’s no coincidence. It’s so hilarious to me that my husband only started writing in January 2013 and since then he has written some 25 novels. I knew I wanted to be a writer since childhood and instead I got really, really expert at procrastination. I repeatedly resist what might possibly be one of my greatest joys. Heck, I even ran really successful master-classes on how to write your book.
Partly I’m writing about it because I realise that it’s been a long time since I was brave and that saddens me. I am writing because the incongruence of not writing is too painful. I am writing because honestly, I think the world has gone a bit crazy with all the glorification of being busy. I hope in some small way to offer my voice as encouragement to those who seek a different path. Those who recognise that it’s ok not to buy into the mindless accumulation of stuff but rather seek a more fulfilled and meaningful life.
I am writing as I have to be able to look my children in the eye, as a whole person, who really is doing their best to live into the best version of themselves, not just someone who thinks they are.
Making this deeper connection involves so many things, finding and connecting with my tribe, keeping it real, living with ever present vulnerability, and being still enough, for long enough to hear the still quiet voice of my heart when it speaks to me. How I will manage that last part with two kids along for the ride who knows, but I’m up for the challenge.
So I have no firm idea really where we will go on this little excursion, it is an unfolding path. But it will involve delving deeply into each day with a fresh perspective, one with simplicity and joy as its focus.