Thinking About What the Good, Simple Life Means

Baked Fresh

What do you think of when you hear the words: Good Life or Simple Life. Are they synonymous for you? Do you get a good feeling?

Now, think about what that means for you.

Is it a cabin in the woods?

I’m safe in my snowy seclusion!

Or, maybe a tree house is your cup of tea.

No one will find me up here!

Or, perhaps it’s a cabin out in the ocean.

Bother me if you dare!

There is a cabin off the coast of OBX that we watched with our binoculars when we were there for the holidays. Ron, the fisherman, would love to rent it. I’m a bit more skeptical. I think I might try it if the weather is supposed to be beautiful. However, I might be calling the Coast Guard after my claustrophobia sets in!

The point is that a good and simple life can mean something different to different people. You don’t have to follow someone else’s life. Look at all options for a good life. What is right for you? You may think having lots of things is the good life. I get you. I’m the same way with my collections. I love to have these things around me; they make me feel good.

The problem with things is that they weigh you down, among other ethical and ecological reasons. Do you need more and more? I ask myself that all of the time.

When I have a good clear out, I always feel better, lighter. When I think about storing or moving all this stuff, it makes me exhausted. This stuff obviously does not make my life simpler, but does it make my life a good life? Maybe–maybe not!

Collecting can be a sickness. For most collectors, you have to have every one of the things that make up your collection. For me, it’s the thrill of the find that keeps me collecting. I really like my friend Peggy’s philosophy about that. Now retired and living in a small house in Florida, she had a career as an art teacher and antique dealer with her husband, so that is a double whammy. When she finds something she likes, she decides what she wants to replace. If she has something she can sell or give away in place of the new thing, she will get it. I like that philosophy for a couple reasons. First, you can still do something that brings you enjoyment. Second, this makes you stop and think before making a purchase. I’m sure we all have had those impulsive purchases that we regretted later. You can return the item, but that takes time, energy, and sometimes more money. This idea allows you to slow down and enjoy the process.

For me, living austerely is not a Good Life, but that’s just me. If that’s your idea of a good life, then by all means live that way. But–ask yourself if that life makes you happy. Life is too short to be miserable. Sometimes there is nothing we can do about life’s miseries, but if you can do something about it, adjust your thinking and your life. Just make sure it’s a good one for you!

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