To live simply means different things to different people, myself included. For example, I am not willing to forgo everyday conveniences like electricity, television, the internet or a few decent items of clothing — but some are. But I am willing to give up expensive sports cars, a mortgage I cannot afford just to try to impress people, extravagant vacations to far away lands, and going out to dinner every night of the week. Why am I willing to give those things up? So I don’t have to work 60 hours a week at a job I don’t like just to be able to try to pay for them all! There was a time back in the day when I feel as though I sold my soul for money. Sure, I didn’t make a deal with the actual Devil, but I might as well have – I hated my job, I hated the travel I had to do for it, and I was becoming increasingly lethargic and unhealthy because of it. But hey, the money was good – and that was all that mattered, right? Until one day I said enough is enough, and walked away without a safety net. Something in me keyed me into the fact that no matter how much money I made or how much harder I worked, this lifestyle was not going to make me happy and I had to get out asap. So I did, and that was the beginning of trying to live a more simple life.
Ever since that day, I have worked to get away from the consumer-based lifestyle I had been trying to keep up with. I stopped going shopping all the time just because I was bored. I made due with what I had, for the most part, instead of buying a new “this” or “that”. I like living where there is no traffic, no keeping up with the Joneses, no “holier than thou” attitudes…just people living their lives as they wish, with no one getting in their business (or caring).
So for me, simple living is living the way you want to live without having to compromise who you are or who you want to be. By owning my own freelance business, I make my own hours and (usually) earn enough income to live comfortably. Am I going to get rich doing this? Nope, probably not. Do I feel the need to get rich anymore? Nope. I am doing things my way, at my new speed, and that is what we were after. That’s my definition of simple living. What’s yours?