6 Simple practices to transform your life
“Consumerism is the worship of the god of quantity; advertising is its liturgy.”
- John O'Donohue
Modern living is a time that carries its unique privileges and hurdles. The easy assess to material possessions combined with the over exposition to a consumeristic culture urge us to adopt a more mindful lifestyle. During the industrial revolution, materialistic gathering helped us build steadier material-based social structures. However, enduring this mindset during material and intellectual abundant times leads to the experience of clogged houses, bodies, and minds.
To bring some balance to our lives, we need to reflect on how we are living and adopt a more sustainable approach to life. An approach that prioritizes essentials such as time, health, relationships, experiences, and things in life that we truly care about. A lifestyle that manages our outer environments in ways that positively influence our sense of self and contribute to our ability to thrive. A great place to start is to ask yourself:
What kind of life do I want to live in?
The first most important thing is to define a clear-cut vision of what a meaningful life is. Ask yourself: How do I want to feel in my life? What do I care about the most? How do I want to live? What am I passionate about? The better you can answer these questions, the easier it will be to declutter your home and life because you’ll know exactly what belongs and what doesn’t. Let your needs, genuine intentions, and passions guide you in becoming your best version.
Decluttering is a tool to remove from our life any superfluous belongings, activities, and relationships to create space for an abundance of what matters the most. This is particularly important because consumerism tends to fill our bodies and minds with a myriad of ideas and desires that put us under a lot of pressure. Especially when our current situation does not match these expectations. By selecting what matters regarding our house, body, daily activities, relationships, and beliefs about life one inherently adopts a more natural and purposeful outlook of life.
Part of simple living is quality over quantity. This means becoming comfortable with owning and needing less. Though shopping for new items can be tempting and temporarily fulfilling, it can’t provide the long-lasting satisfaction of an intentional life. Plus lower expenditure on goods and services immediately means that time once spent earning money can now be used on meaningful experiences. So next time you feel the urge to buy something new, pause and ask yourself: What do I truly want right now?
A simple life calls for an organic diet. How food is grown can have a major impact on our mental and emotional well-being as well as the environment. Organic foods have higher nutrient content, are kinder to the environment, and are healthier. Additionally, they can be more affordable when bought directly from a farmer or producer, either via a box scheme, farmers market, or farm shop.
Self-reflection is essential to simple living because the better you know yourself, the easier it will be to see what fits in your life. Besides, quiet time allows you to reconnect with your vision, track your progress, and adjust your trajectory if needed. A simple five minutes each day to check how you feel is a great way to start.
Finally, a simple life invites us to review our overuse of technology. Technologies can make a simple lifestyle within mainstream culture easier and more sustainable. Nevertheless, technological interventions can also reinforce consumerism, limiting beliefs, and mass surveillance. That’s why it’s essential to create boundaries and offline periods every single day.
How to start? Make it a daily practice to be mindful of your surroundings and your routines and see if they add value to your life. This shift from being trapped in an overwhelming consumeristic standpoint to a modest living means more health, money, and quality time. Use them wisely. The little things we do every day can be powerful. If anything, make it a commitment to do one less thing today.