Simplicity is the key to happiness and results

Hello and welcome to Strong Solutions where we reverse death through food and fitness. People like to make health much more complicated than it actually is. I am always looking for extraneous variables to cut from my advice, training, and in my own life. All the extraneous variables are only distractions keeping you or I from truly experiencing our desired results.

Simplicity is the key. Simplicity in life, in relationships, in training, in diet, in spirituality, and in sleep.

And that’s why I’m making the Paleo Made Simple Grocery Guide, to remove all the extra stuff keeping anyone from really digging in and working the Paleo plan. That’s also why I wrote the Paleo Made Simple: 30-Day Guide to the New You. There’s so much freedom with Paleo that newbies easily get overwhelmed in the “what about this or that?” arguments. And although I love, love, love, and strongly recommend the awesome Paleo & nutrition books out there – The Paleo Solution; Primal Body, Primal Mind; The Primal Blueprint; Good Calories, Bad Calories; Why We Get Fat; The Vegetarian Myth; etc. – many folks are not ready to commit to a book yet. They need to experience some results FIRST to peak their interest in going deeper. We can talk about any “what ifs” and “why’s” after you’ve given Paleo a fair shot by following the simple steps at each meal for 30 days. (Note: Yes if you click on the above book links and buy them, I will get a small commission as an Amazon Affiliate).

In my life, we keep things simple by not having car payments, lots of debt, or otherwise living above our means. Yes, we drive trucks that are over ten years old without air conditioners. This is a nuisance more than anything because the air conditioner is not a true need after all. But our trucks are paid for. So if I lost my job tomorrow, we wouldn’t be in wayyyy over our heads.

In our first year of marriage money was fairly tight. And let me tell you that’s when we fought the most. Over finances and how we should spend the few dollars to our name. So it’s no wonder that many get divorced when they are in too deep because the very condition breeds conflict. If you want to improve your marriage, do yourself a favor, simplify your life, and live below your means.

I’ll be honest. I didn’t always think this way. When I moved in with Pat and Anthony several years ago while attending UT Knoxville, I was shocked at the simplicity of their lives. You mean, you use store brand?! Crazy! Your house isn’t filled with useless crap, knick-knacks, and collectables? Unheard of! You don’t have caller-id? Is that even possible?!

But what I learned is that most of my needs were really unnecessary wants and I could live just as well, perhaps more content, without all the unnecessary distractions and complications.

Simplicity is key to happiness, not worrying, and contentment. Use it today.

Use the following questions to help you start simplifying and experiencing results!

Are your bills more than 50% of your monthly income?

Do you agonize over every meal because you don’t know what you will fix?

Do you allow your inbox, YouTube, or Facebook to distract you for hours?

Are your relationships suffering because you are involved in every church activity, every service and civic opportunity, every board and council because you “need” to make a real difference in the world and you think that the more you do, the more you make a difference?

Do you think you cannot exercise because it “takes too long”?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, it’s time to simplify your life! Complicating food, exercise, finances, and life makes you busy, but doesn’t yield any useful fruit. In fact, any and all of the above issues will prevent you from reaching any goal. period.

I’ve answered yes to every above question before and am relieved at this writing that I am free of those struggles. Simplification prevents unnecessary struggles, because although we will have conflicts and struggle in life, we are meant to grow and thrive and explore as humans on this gift of earth that we are blessed with.

So, if your bills are more than 50% of your monthly income, I’ll make a huge guess that you experience conflict, hardship, and feelings of powerlessness and of being stuck. Simplify. There are lots of effective resources to help anyone get out of financial debt quickly. Dave Ramsey is a great place to start.

If you agonize over every meal, stop complicating it! Meat, veggies, fat, maybe some fruit. Repeat. Use whatever spices you want, but every meal doesn’t have to look like a four course dining experience. Simple food is just as delicious as complicated food.

If you allow the internet to distract you from productivity, use Boomerang on gmail or Google to search. Stop allowing everyone else to rule your life.

If your relationships are suffering because you are too busy with seemingly useful stuff, cut them out. Acts of service should fulfill, satisfy, and enhance your relationships, not suck them dry. Pick one or two things you are truly passionate about and cut the rest. Seriously. Do this now. They will find other people. The world will go on. You are not a unique snowflake and you may find that you do all the busy-ness to avoid the real “stuff” in your life. Deal with that too and get on with your life! It’s too short not to!

If you refuse to exercise because it takes hours and hours each week, simplify your exercise by using the basics. Squats, push-ups, pull-ups, planks, sprints. Boom! Done. 10 minutes three to five days per week is not unreasonable AND is simpler!

In conclusion, simplicity is the key to happiness and results in any facet of life. If you aren’t experiencing your desired results, it’s probably because of unnecessary worries and stresses you have placed on yourself. Simplify the external stuff and enhance your life in every way!
Thoughts? Comment below!

 

2 Comments

  • Angie

    Reply Reply August 10, 2011

    I found this newsletter ironic because I’ve spent the last few days cleaning out cabinets & closets, getting rid of clutter & reorganizing. I just feel better with less “stuff” to worry about (and dust). Simplicity is always best.

    Concerning our finances, we downsized our bills before Wyatt was born, so that I could stay home. It’s funny that you mention not needing a caller-id because we have lived without one for almost 5 years, just the basic phone service… no call-waiting, three way etc. Nor have we paid for trash removal. We recycle, have a compost pile & take the rest to the dump ourselves.

    It’s the little things that really add up & have made a huge difference for us. Being able to stay home with my kids, without worrying over money, has certainly been a blessing in my life. I really relate to your words & see were I can benefit by applying it to my cooking & exercise routine.

    Great article!

    • gerilyn

      Reply Reply August 10, 2011

      I appreciate your insightful experience, Angie. I love that you compost and recycle, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

      It truly is the little things that add up. $7 a month doesn’t seem like much until you add it up to see an extra $84 a year that you could spend on something truly useful.

      Stay tuned on the exercise ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m slowly dripping more and more exercise goodness in here.

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