Like many things in life, the simplicity journey isn't a straight line, but rather a spiral upwards. There is progress, relapse, some answers and more questions. Sometimes we wonder if we are fit for this quest, if it is even possible. In these situations, the most important is to remember to do your best, whatever your best is today.
Ever since simplicity and minimalism have become a focus of many magazines, blogs and consultants, more and more of us go down that quest. Which is great! I remember when I first discovered this movement, there were a couple of big ones like Zen Habits, Dominique Loreau's book l'Art de la Simplicité, and when it comes to wardrobe simplicity, there was the spearhead Dead Fleurette and a few of her friends.
Now we have dozens of blogs focused on many different aspects of simplicity, from style to slow to motherhood, many followed Leo Babauta's lead and made minimalism consulting their main activity. In France at least, a lot of magazines flourished on the topic "Simple Things", "Flow", "Happinez" (many of them seem to exist since a long time in the Netherlands too. Maybe some of you Dutch readers can confirm).
And that's a great thing. Anyone who wants to start simplifying their life now has heaps of content, models, ideas to pick from and find what suits them best. However, I sometimes wonder if it doesn't put some pressure on us adventurers on this simplicity quest.
Images of perfect simplicityI am probably unvoluntarily guilty of this myself as a simplicity blogger - more content and models also mean a lot of images from people's simple life, which may sound perfect from the outside. From Kinfolk-like tumblr, pinterest or instagram feeds to ideal Kondo-fied homes, we sometimes feel we are not doing well enough.
This is natural - both to show the best of us when we talk about simplicity and to sometimes feel we fall short.
I can only talk about myself here, but one of the goals of this blog is to inspire you to follow a simple path, share my own experience and maybe help you find your way. My word is only one among many, but it can be one of these ideas to pick from as you choose your own way. Even though I also share my moments of doubt, I only show a part of my life here, the part that can help you on your journey.
And it is normal to feel like we are falling short sometimes too. With so many sources for inspirations, we sometimes feel we are not doing enough, not worth the label "simplicity" on our lives. And that may be discouraging.
Do Your BestMy answer to that is : do your best. This isn't my invention, "do your best" is actually the fourth Agreement of don Miguel Ruiz. The essence of it is: just keep doing your best. Sometimes it won't be much as you are swamped under the workload or personal issues and end up impulse buying an item. And sometimes, in the midst of a calm week-end, you'll have an epiphany and make fulgurant progress.
This is a normal process too, and even simplicity bloggers like myself have these moments of doubt. To me, the key is to be convinced that you are doing your best. And if you aren't, then it is time to set some objectives and take action that will make you feel like you are doing your best.
Sometimes it is a six month shopping fast, and sometimes it is buying 5 items on sale instead of 10. The whole point of "doing your best" is that it is personal, it depends on where you start from, what your life circumstances allow you to do today, your own possibilities and limitations.
Sometimes, self indulgence is a part of the simplicity journey, for it is so easy in this society to be hard on ourselves. Go easy, find your own tune, and do your best. You'll see that this will help you progress further than any ambitious goal that isn't in line with your life circumstances.