This week’s fortune is a nice compliment to last week’s. In case you were wondering, I don’t plan out the order of my fortunes. I stack them up as I eat the cookies and let fate decide. It makes for some interesting post series and it’s simpler than deciding which to write on next.
I like things simple. We don’t need complications in life. No one even wants to talk about their complicated situations. That’s why when someone asks, we say, “It’s complicated,” and then try to change the subject.
Unfortunately, we tend to complicate everything in our lives. We make things harder than they need to be and we also obscure life’s simple beauty. Before we know it we end up frustrated and unhappy.
My family dinners aren’t extravagant. We’ll have a casserole or tacos and, occasionally, I use the good plates. We come together and share not just a meal but companionship. Instead of worrying about getting the kids to practice and scheduling dates for the next meet, we share highlights of our day and laugh with each other around the table. We still partake in piano, choir, and scouts, but we take the time to be a family first.
Keeping a simple schedule is one way to reduce complications and stress. You can also get rid of clutter. We collect a lot of stuff in our lives. Comedian George Carlin does a great skit on “Stuff” (WARNING: Adult Language). We end up with so much stuff that we can’t see the forest through the trees. In this case, the room through the tchotchkes and knick-knacks.
If we take some time to de-clutter our homes—or not buy the latest item to keep up with the Joneses—we would feel more at ease. Seriously, do we really need that ticket stub from our Junior Prom? Maybe we should get rid of that old tight suit from 15 years ago that we haven’t worn in ages.
Removing the clutter can allow us to appreciate the architecture of the home. Less is more. Leonardo Da Vinci said, “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” A similar principle is used in designing. KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) follows the premise if it is simple in form and function it will succeed.The KISS principle was coined by Clarence “Kelly” Johnson, a lead engineer at Lockheed Skunk Works. Many engineers, including software engineers, use it to design great products. It was originally practiced in designing items for use in the theater of war. Whatever they made needed to be easy to use and if it broke, fixed with some basic mechanic’s training and simple tools. If not, it became obsolete.
It’s amazing how we think counterintuitive to this principle in our lives. We try to get more in life. We aim for bigger is better. We size-up our sodas and popcorn. We think grandeur is great. We go over and above to impress.
I’ve been married to the same fun and loving husband for 21 years. When we planned our wedding—my parents planned more than we did—we wanted to keep it simple. My Italian family wanted the big church wedding and big reception to follow. There was a grand cake, food galore, and probably way too many flowers. My husband and I allowed it to happen, but we knew that none of it mattered. We would have been just as happy with a simple little ceremony under a canopy of tree branches. What mattered most was the two of us, together forever. Simple. Beautiful.
This is the way life should be, simple and beautiful. Consider de-stressing and de-cluttering your life. Sit back and enjoy friends and family. Take a moment and breathe. Cut out the complications and enjoy the simple things. Then you can fill your life with joy.