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a simpler life

As I swiftly approach my 30th birthday (just over 6 (edit: oops. actually 5…) months away!), I’m becoming more and more in need of a simpler life. I used to so easily fall prey to the notion of “more, more, more”, but over the last year or so that’s changed drastically. This shift in mindset is likely due to a number of things – financial necessity and an overwhelmed sense of mental exhaustion being two big ones. #wompwomp

Have you ever felt like there’s literally just no more room in your brain to function efficiently?

That’s what I was dealing with. Not sad or anything – in fact, as a mama and wife and at my job, (all which I LOVE) I’ve honestly never felt happier – just mentally cluttered. I’d go to work and then at the end of the day get home feeling overwhelmed at all the stuff. Sure, we have things that I absolutely LOVE and will never get rid of. But, do we also have things that I look at and think “why the eff is that here?” YUP. I feel like we’re constantly just shoving things out of sight instead of being intentional about each thing we own. I want to look around each room of my home and feel content and in love with what I see. I want to proudly display the pieces we have as things we love. I want it all to serve a purpose. I want to NOT spend every waking minute at home thinking about the laundry and dishes and tidying of toys. Mostly, I want to have brain power, enough mental clarity, and finally, TIME left over at the end of each day for the things I truly love – my family, this space, collaborating, building and having community. The important things. The things that really, truly make a life.

We’re working toward building a simpler lifestyle. It will be a process. There will likely be push back from people who just don’t understand. That’s okay. This is an important move for us and I’m honestly thrilled about it. You know how I mentioned how heavy I’ve been feeling? Just making the decision to do this has me so much lighter. If the IDEA can do such wonders just imagine the implementation of it!

We’re making lists of things to sell and give away. We’re cleaning out every drawer and closet. We’re prioritizing what we feel is most important for our little family. We’re really doing this.

How many of you live a simple lifestyle? What tips do you have for us?

make-it-happenPhoto credit: unknown

January 25, 2017 - 10:09 pm

Elizabeth Mayberry - GAH! I can totally relate! I turned 28 last year (read I am turning 29 this year) and I started feeling the weight of it all. I started laying things out and seeing what I could walk away from. My full time job was one of them – it was hard to let that go but also so freeing. You’ve got this!

January 25, 2017 - 5:02 pm

Kelly Allen - Oh man. I have really been longing to do this too. The clutter in my house drives me nuts! But my hubby and I are both the worst at sentimentalizing our stuff. I hope you share advice on how to simplify as you go along!

January 13, 2017 - 9:02 pm

Jordan - Love this!! We’ve been going through the same process… slowly going through everything we own, making trip after trip to Goodwill, and reevaluating all of our spending habits. I especially resonated with this: “I want to NOT spend every waking minute at home thinking about the laundry and dishes and tidying of toys.” YES! I want to BE with my kids, not follow them around managing their stuff. Thanks for sharing!

January 11, 2017 - 11:18 pm

Shanna McCann - Kate! Hi! Thanks for reading! Ah, social media is such a black hole, isn’t it? I experience that same struggle. I’ve heard of Emily’s book, but haven’t made the time to read it yet. I’ll be sure to add it to my list! Thank you for the early birthday wishes! Gotta soak up these last few months of my twenties, right? πŸ™‚

January 11, 2017 - 11:16 pm

Shanna McCann - Thanks, Derek! You da best. Totally agree. It’s so trendy and I’m normally not one to jump on bandwagons like this. Ha! Thanks for your encouragement. I’m really excited to see how much better we can do life without all the extra stuff taking up so much space – literally and figuratively.

January 11, 2017 - 11:13 pm

Shanna McCann - Hi Bre! Thanks for sharing! So glad to hear I’m not alone. πŸ™‚ We can work through it all together this year! I absolutely agree with the “one thing at a time” idea – it can be so overwhelming if you do it any other way! I’ll definitely be sharing about our journey and I would love to hear about yours! xo

January 11, 2017 - 11:09 pm

Shanna McCann - Isn’t it such a freeing feeling?! Best of luck to you! xo

January 11, 2017 - 10:33 pm

Shanna McCann - Meagan, hello! So glad to hear you can relate. I’m thankful my husband is just as into it as I am – possibly even more so as he’s the one at home during the days with our son! I imagine as you work your way through simplifying a few things, he’ll start to see the benefits and find some value in it. Thanks so much for commenting! xo

January 11, 2017 - 10:12 pm

Kate - Hello Shanna. I love the idea of simplifying. Lately I’ve been trying to re-wire my brain to not think I have to post my entire life on social media. That constant addiction can really cloud your presence and takes up so much precious brain space like you mentioned! I’m reading the best book right now, Grace Not Perfection by Emily Ley, and I think you would really love it. She writes like she’s talking directly to you, its just the best. Happy early birthday!

January 11, 2017 - 8:54 pm

Derek - YEAH! I love this post, Shanna. I think this topic of living simple is very hot right now…and I hope it stays that way. When we peel back the layers of what’s making us busy, we quickly realize how dumb it all is. But when we’re willing to ask the question, “What’s really important?” …we’ll settle at nothing less than purging everything from our lives that doesn’t add value or meaning.

Thanks for the post. Keet it up. πŸ™‚

January 11, 2017 - 8:04 pm

Breanna La Liberte - Hi there, I’m Bre! I’m a new reader – saw your post on The Rising Tide Society! This totally resonates with me. Especially this: “Have you ever felt like there’s literally just no more room in your brain to function efficiently?” YES.

While I love the memories that come with our stuff, I’ve recently been feeling like some of it is just that – STUFF. Not all of it has enough meaning to us to keep around, and yet we still keep it around.

And I can definitely relate to the cluttered mind aspect. We live in a small place so clutter tends to add up. I hate coming home at night feeling like all I’m doing is sorting through the clutter. So one of our goals for 2017 is to minimize.

I don’t have any tips since we haven’t done it yet, but what I do know is we’ve tried before and failed. And I think that’s because I get so excited that I try to do everything at once and then get overwhelmed. This time we’re going to tackle ONE thing at a time. First up: the closet.

Good luck to you! I’m looking forward to following along. πŸ™‚

January 11, 2017 - 7:53 pm

Janelle - I love paring down (can’t say I’ve mastered the art yet) but I can really relate to the lighter feeling after minimizing…

January 11, 2017 - 7:24 pm

Meagan - Coming over from Rising Tide. Ah I can relate to this so much, although the person I am having the most push-back from happens to be my husband. I can tell you though, the feeling you get when you start simplifying is amazing! Good luck!

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