Choosing Less

Choosing less is a daily challenge for everyone, regardless of where we are. We all have a lot of stuff. We all have the same challenge, whether we are living in a city or on the countryside. We are living in a culture that values “More is Better”.

To be honest, I sometimes hesitate about what to do next. Why? On the one hand it is rather tempting to turn my back on everything and start all over again. I am dreaming of a simple life on a sailboat and exploring the world, traveling all over the place or residing on a tropical island, away from civilization. Not the way Tom Hanks lives in Cast Away, but rather a modest beach shack in Samoa or Tonga, like “Big Z” in Surf’s Up.

Palms line Lalomanu Beach in Western Samoa. Photo:lonelyplanetimages.com

On the other hand, it’s probably easier to follow the hurdle and give in to the world of excess. And it’s probably true that a century ago it really was easier to step away from civilization and live in the woods or in some remote location. On top of that, in our modern society, it becomes harder to say “NO!” to all these great restaurants, luxury shops, new cars, gadget hypes, second homes, etc. The need for more is winning more supporters everyday. Even in remote locations they are dreaming of our western lifestyle.

Is it really possible to choose for less and to simplify our lives?

Yes, it is possible! Although I admit I sometimes even like the excess and luxury, it is a conscientious choice to choose less. For me it’s about Living Simply and Less is More. I know we can change in different ways and that one of my goals is to Slow Down. It is also clear to me that choosing less is not about plunging into poverty. What I am really longing for is a better quality of life. Remember, eat the chocolate first 🙂

I want to focus more on the fun in life, rather than on being inspired by the “More is Better” way of life. I deliberately choose simplicity and more meaning in life instead. And you know, saying “no” to some of the excess, means saying “yes” to other opportunities that have more and lasting value. Or to put it in the words of John C. Maxwell: “Learn to say ‘no’ to the good, so you can say ‘yes’ to the best”!

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