Simplicity is constantly under attack, and we as a culture are trapped by complexity. Simplicity is a casualty as complexity increasingly invades our lives.

Our hurried lifestyles and constant scurrying after progress increase complexity through too many choices too often. Our time and attention are constantly divided, never able to go into much depth.

How can we discover who we truly are and what makes us happy if we are constantly distracted and overwhelmed?

My Journey to Simplicity

When I first began to deliberately simplify my life, I thought I was pursuing simplicity to be healthy and strong. My initial push for simplicity came after undiagnosed food allergies created an environment where depression, anxiety, and illness thrived. This experience not only forced me to simplify my eating habits, but it also directed me toward a less stressful and more fulfilling career.

At first, I was very unhappy at what I saw as a severely limiting diet. Eventually, I realized that the illnesses caused by my food allergies provided the necessarily motivation to pursue lifestyle change.

For the first year, I convinced myself being sensitive to both dairy and gluten would cause misery for the rest of my life. I hated reading all the food labels, I quit going to my favorite restaurants, and I started cooking separate meals for myself. Plus, allergen-friendly food is more expensive and not always very healthy.

Years later, adapting my diet feels natural, and I find that less food choices makes grocery shopping and choosing a restaurant (though we don’t eat out a lot) much easier.

Trapped by Complexity

So many people feel trapped by complexity. They feel hopeless because a way out keeps alluding them. That’s how I felt when I just couldn’t climb out of the pit of depression and chronic illness. Taking the first few deliberate steps toward simplification often starts the momentum needed to affect major change, though.

While I didn’t know what change needed to take place for me to be healthy, I kept looking and trying and adjusting. Eventually, I discovered many small changes that added up to make a huge difference for healing in my life.

Complexity pursues. Simplicity must be pursued. While complexity will never cease to pursue, simplicity will begin to pursue as we allow room for it to do so by slowly pushing out the complex with the simple.

What is one area in your life you would like to simplify? What small steps could you take to begin that process?