From my first modeling contract twenty years ago, to expanding my dance company to two sites and eventually closing it a few years later from exhaustion (not really good at delegating, I taught every single class!), I was always trying to get more, get more, when we catch up we can slow down….you’ve probably said it yourself.
We made such a drastic change that we still get confused looks from friends and family about why we live where we do, in the size house that we do, with the business that we do. Doug’s brother is pretty certain he should go get a “real” job. We are used to the confusion though. We only hope one day they will understand that for everything one has, every material item, every dollar spent is time off your life. How many hours does it take to pay the car payment? How many hours does it cost to purchase the new shoes? There is always money to be made. We can always make what we need, we just choose to make less so that we don’t spend our life working for things that are not permanent. What a waste! Life is short enough! I would rather sit on the tree swing, taking in the sweet smell of lilacs in the spring, sipping hot coffee, and writing in a journal than stressing through rush hour to get to a job that doesn’t allow me to enjoy what I just worked for! Our lack of bills and decreased spending has allowed me to breathe for the first time since I was a child.
Of course there are things that need to be paid for. Food, shelter, clothing, some outings, etc. so we must have a job. All of us have a gift within us, usually more than one talent, that could suffice to make enough money to survive. For us, it was making herbs into medicine and making luxurious body products safe enough to eat (but not very tasty), and now to teach those skills. I also opened a new dance company with a smaller amount of students just so I can dance! None of these businesses needed more money up front than we could come up with to start, no loans. It looks as though we live below poverty level if you were to look at the numbers, but we have never been richer or happier! It means that we have designated what gets cash and we never feel like we are suffering. If I desperately feel like I need something, I will go make a little more to get it.
But I am happy with a packet of seeds, a deck of cards, a journal, pots of coffee or tea, okay, a bottle of wine, some popcorn, a vintage dress from the thrift store, the new “old” aprons that my friend gave me, a sliced radish with smoked sea salt, the tabby on my lap right now, and simplicity and peace in our household. This may be your year to find what you love, pursue it, and give up the rest! And I will try to simplify even more!
Happy New Year Everyone!