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Living a Simple Life Improves the Quality of Life
A Fantasy for Some
What I am about to say is the truth. It will be hard for some of you to believe. In fact, there will be some who will say I am fabricating it all just for the sake of getting views on this article. That’s fine. I have no desire to make you drink the Koolaid if you are not thirsty. Go back to doing what you were doing before I bothered you.
If you are still here, then consider this statement:
I do not have stress in my life.
Not possible you say?
Blow it out your smoke pipes I say, because it is true. I live without stress.
Imagine, if you possibly can, a life without stress. Maybe you can. Most likely you can’t, because let’s face it, life is hard, times are crazy, and stress seems to be a common denominator that is shared by all.
Except I don’t have stress.
According to the Mayo Clinic, stress causes the following:
- Digestive problems
- Heart disease
- Sleep problems
- Weight gain
- Memory and concentration impairment
I have none of these.
I have no stress.
Let’s take a closer look at the causes of stress before I try to sell you what I’m selling.
Causes of Stress
I did my research. I scoured ten different medical sites, and what follows is a list of the agreed upon causes of stress today:
- Health…chronic illness most definitely will cause stress
- Emotional problems, such as low self-esteem, depression, grief, etc.
- Relationship problems
- Major life changes such as losing a job, or the death of a loved one
- Family problems
- Conflicts with your beliefs and values
- Your living conditions, such as living in a crowded city, or too much crime in your area
- Your social situation, such as being the victim of bias, or not having enough money to pay bills
- Your job and unhappiness associated with it
Let me repeat….I have no stress.
I suffer from no stress-related health issues. I sleep like a baby every night, seven hours per, 365 days per year.
Impossible? Some may think so, but all I can tell you is my truth.
So, how is it possible?
Allow me to explain.
Something Had to Give
It has not always been so. I knew stress intimately at one time. I felt it in high school, and I felt it in college. I felt it in the workplace and I felt it in relationships. It affected my health and it affected my outlook on life. Many a sleepless night I had when I was younger, and many stress-related illnesses afflicted me over the years, including my favorite crutch, alcoholism, the perfect way to blot out all stress and just escape reality.
This November will mark the eighth anniversary of the night it almost all came to an end in a hotel room in Anchorage, Alaska, the night I almost died.
I needed to change my lifestyle if I wanted to continue living, and if I wanted to live a quality life.
And so I did. I changed my lifestyle. I eagerly embraced the Simple Life.
Do you feel you have too much stress in your life?
How I Did It
Take a look again at the list of causes of stress. I did eight years ago, and I set about changing my lifestyle, so that those causes did not exist.
I needed a fresh start because, obviously, what I was doing wasn’t working.
I took a look at what we all need to survive: shelter, food, water…and a fourth item that I believed to be crucial….love.
Those four things I had to have. Everything else was just window-dressing, and at times dangerous window-dressing. So, I started building a life based on needs rather than wants. I stripped my life down to the basic essentials and began building it in a new fashion with happiness being the guiding light.
Mind you, I was fifty-eight years old when I started this new journey, so please, don’t tell me you are too old to do the same. I won’t listen to nonsense.
Okay, let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. What did these changes look like?
I had to work. No way around that one, but I didn’t have to work at a miserable job. I computed how much money I had to have to live, and then I set about finding a job I loved doing that would cover basic expenses. I ended up teaching, and then I followed that by becoming a professional writer. I loved both jobs, and I firmly believe there is no stress when you love what you are doing…or at least there shouldn’t be.
I stripped my life of surplus personal possessions. I tore up credit cards.
I eliminated negative people from my life, and surrounded myself with loyal, loving, supportive friends.
I began exercising and eating healthier meals, and suddenly found that I no longer had nagging injuries or ailments.
I rebuilt myself, gave my self-esteem a boost, and came to enjoy looking at the new guy in the mirror.
I embraced life, and began to see beauty in the simple things, like going for a walk in the park, or reading a good book by the lakeshore. I did not need expensive vacations, or the latest technological toy to make me happy, and I didn’t count my wealth by the number of gadgets I owned.
And Then the Miracles Started Happening
Suddenly, I had no money worries.
Suddenly, I had time to enjoy life rather than simply surviving.
Suddenly, I had quality time to spend with loved ones.
Suddenly, I had no stress.
Last week my wife and I split two cords of wood and felt great doing it. We stacked it in preparation for winter. We fed our chickens, quail and rabbits. We took walks around the neighborhood and in the nearby woods. We watched hawks flying overheard, and marveled at the leaves changing colors. We spent time with family and friends.
We enjoyed life.
How about you? Did you thoroughly enjoy life last week?
If not, maybe some changes should be made.
Some great thoughts from Mary
- How I Grew Up In A Frugal Society
I learned to be frugal when I was a child. I think our society could learn a lot from the way people had to live in years past. I still live frugally and have taught my children to do the same.
Be Honest Now
Which of these causes you the most stress?
Can You Do It?
I personally know some folks who cannot do what we do. They love their possessions, and they work long, hard, stressful hours so they can pay for their big home, their three cars, and their playthings. That’s all great if that’s truly what floats their boat, but there is stress that accompanies those lifestyle choices, and that stress is evident every time I meet with them.
I no longer want to live that way.
Life is too short for me to live that way.
I have no idea how you feel about this. I just know that living a stress-free life works for me.
Can you do it? I’m pretty sure you can, but it takes a willingness to completely change your life, so….are you willing?
Of course there are those out there, reading this, who have major health issues that cannot simply be wished away. I get it. Of course there are those out there who are living in abject poverty, and all the positive thinking in the world won’t change that. I get it.
But I know for a fact there are millions out there who are living lifestyles that are harming them, and they are capable of changing, and yet they don’t. This article is for them.
Think about the stress in your life. Take a few minutes and jot down the things that are causing you stress. Can you change any of them? If so, you might consider doing that, because, quite frankly, stress is a killer.
Me, I’ll just kick back and keep living my simple life.
2014 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)