I have no reluctance to say that I was a bright child. I also believe that I was incredibly insightful at a very young age. I’m not sure when that bit got lost. Possibly around the time the breasts appeared. And the accompanying hormones. Who knows. But I do often remember a thought I had quite early on, at the age of maybe 7 or 8, which now seems to have been exceptionally brilliant and understanding for that age. I remember thinking that I should keep a journal or write a book, but not of frivolous daily activities. Rather, an account of the joy found in simple things so that in future, I can be reminded what had made me happy.
I know, it seems odd for a child to be thinking so far ahead. I suppose I must have had my first taste of the complexities of adult life, either an encounter with a particularly sour specimen or perhaps a parental argument. Who knows. But all I remember, vaguely, is the urge to record a reminder of the happiness found in the little things.
I never did, of course. Being a child, I soon found something simpler and more enjoyable to occupy my time. I wish I had done it though. I may have been on to something. Because lately, I could have done with that little journal, that reminder of the simple things that made me happy. As I grow older, I can’t help notice how we, as humans, seem to have this incredible capacity to complicate our lives in a big way. Something about associating complications and complexities with importance and substance.
Henry David Thoreau wrote:
“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you’ve imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler”
Why have we become so averse to the idea of simplicity? So accustomed to a school of thought where it’s not good enough if it’s not too complicated? Simplicity is frowned upon. Advanced is always better. Upgrades. More features. More things. More stuff!
This is all fine and dandy. Until it spills over into our real lives. Our relationships with friends and lovers and family and others. Our unnatural yet somewhat inherent need to complicate things tends to completely backfire in these situations. Badly. Even Facebook has an option where you can set your relationship status to “It’s Complicated”. Why?! If it’s complicated, it’s probably not worth it. Even Confucius said “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated”.
Stop it. Live, simply. Every day. Love, simply. Be loved. Be happy. Be content in your own simplicity. Don’t be difficult. Don’t make things difficult. Just let it go.
“The greatest step towards a life of simplicity is to learn to let go.”
** Mostly this post has been a bit of a ‘note to self’ scribbling. This is me. Taking note. **