In considering that Balance Requires Simplicity, we must take time understand that simplicity is not without struggle. However, that struggle pales in comparison to the benefits received. Maybe I should instead say that simplicity is not without its struggles.
Struggles with Simplicity
Is Never Complete
Simplicity must always be pursued to keep complexity at bay. I’ve seen simplicity come and go way too many times both in my own life and in the lives of those I love, and its going happen when it’s no longer doggedly pursued.
Makes You Feel Like an Outsider
When my life was so busy I barely had time to keep up with laundry, I just wasn’t bothered that everyone else was too busy too. Maybe misery loves company, or maybe I just didn’t have the mental room to consider the level of everyone else’s busyness when I constantly behind in my own life. As you simplify, most of the people around you will remain trapped in busyness and overload. This awareness can help you stay focused and avoid the comparison trap.
Makes You More Aware of Complexity
Now that I have more margin built into my life, I notice how much others don’t have. They can’t chat and hang out as often or as long, and they don’t have the time to read, exercise, and pursue personal interests. What once seemed like just another busy person now seems like a chaotic life. Instead of passing judgment on anyone, simply let your increasingly calm and peaceful life be an example of a better way.
Benefits of Simplicity
Simplifying your life, if you stick with it for the long term, creates a paradigm shift. This change in thinking leads to an awareness of what your life used to look like as your old self in the people around you. You’ll also gain an appreciation for the benefits of simplicity that far outweigh any drawback.
Allows Time for Pursuing Passions
Not until I focused on simplicity did the dream of becoming a writer come to fruition. I also have time to read and spend regular time outside as well as to travel and learn new things. Having the freedom to pursue God-given passions is truly amazing.
Allows Room for Quality Relationships
Relationships can and usually do complicate life. This is one area where complication is welcome, though. When the rest of life is simple, the complication of relationships seems to bring abundance and joy in amazing ways. It also allows you to be a better friend and to encourage and support more than you ever could when you were too busy and overwhelmed.
Allows for More Flexibility
What makes me happy now is less tangible and more associated with meeting others’ needs rather than just having my needs met. I’m less rattled when my plans fall apart and can adapt better to change and the unexpected. As with pursuing passions, the flexibility that comes from simplicity is a truly freeing feeling.
The fact that simplicity sets a person apart from the crowd is disheartening at first. Add to that the realization of how much effort simplicity sometimes requires and working towards it seems daunting at first. Once you opened the door, though, simplicity rushes in. You’ll want to forever leave complexity behind.