Essentialism


Pondering...

It’s February 2021 which means that many of us spent January trying to focus and deliver on our new year's resolutions and goals. A large portion of which have since been forgotten and abandoned.

Why?

For most of us, the challenge of creating a new practice is far too arduous to sustain and routine quickly creeps back in.

Editing your personal narrative, how you see yourself in the world, allows you to rewrite your story to incorporate the habits you are trying to adopt. It is all about changing your mindset! Einstein once said: “We cannot solve a problem on the level of consciousness that created it.” By editing your self-story, you expand beyond your current level of consciousness, and welcome the world of abundance that’s waiting for you!


My practice of choice in 2021 is to read (and write) more.

As wonderful as reading is, in a busy, distracting world, it’s hard to find the time. Or rather, it’s hard to make the time.


Common questions people ask!

Most importantly you need to find the practice and the motivation to read.

We read because it makes us powerful. When we don’t read, we become weak. Knowledge is power and ignorance is crippling. Knowledge through reading gives us agency.


“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.”

— Oscar Wilde


Thought-provoking...

Mahatma Gandhi is revered the world over as one of history’s most transformative and inspirational figures. Gandhi was a fearless campaigner for the rights and dignity of all people, whose constant and unwavering promotion of non-violence as a tool to win over hearts and minds has forever left its mark on the world.

However, the man known today for his calm, courage and compassion in the face of oppression was not always comfortable before the crowds. Born Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in Porbandar, India in 1869 — he was later nicknamed “Mahatma,” for “great soul”

Gandhi famously advocated for the rights of Indians, ultimately becoming "Bapu," the father of the Indian independence movement.

For much of his life he suffered from an acute fear of public speaking. Gandhi’s glossophobia, as it’s known, was so severe that when he faced a judge for his first court case as a young lawyer, he froze and fled from the courtroom in a panic.

His unease at speaking made him an excellent listener, whose humility and empathy allowed him to channel the dreams and aspirations of the masses. His hesitancy with words taught him the power of saying more with less — and today, these words, inflected with the heart and wisdom that have made him an international icon, continue to inspire countless millions across the globe.


Some of the famous Gandhi quotes that inspire me:

Read a transcript of his biography here

A charismatic leader that led by example, lived with virtue and succeeded through persistence.

Read this brief but highly informative article about his leadership skills.


A MINIMALIST MINDSET

We have too much stuff and too many obligations. We don’t have enough time or energy.

We lack composure, contentment, calmness.

We’ll never have all the right things,

because there are no “right” things.

That’s the lie we’ve been sold by advertisers

and by confused “influencers” who don’t know any better.


Yes, some objects may enhance our lives,

but only after we subtract the attachment that gets in the way.


Minimalism is a lifestyle that helps people question what things add value to their lives. By clearing the clutter from life’s path, we can all make room for the most important aspects of life: health, relationships, passion, growth, and contribution.

Rid your lives of clutter. Our clutter isn’t relegated only to material things.

We clutter our lives with destructive relationships,

careers, obligations, rituals, busyness, minutiae,

news, media, politics, gossip, drama, rumors.


We clutter our attention with glowing screens.

We clutter our creativity with distractions.

We clutter our free time with trivialities.

We clutter our desires with attachments.


Don't choose the easy path, choose the simple one.


We live in a busy world, one in which our value is often measured in productivity, efficiency, work rate, output, yield, GTD—the rat race. We are inundated with meetings and spreadsheets and status updates and rush-hour traffic and tweets and conference calls and travel time and text messages and reports and voicemails and multitasking and all the trappings of a busy life. Go, go, go. Busy, busy, busy.


Henry David Thoreau said, “It is not enough to be busy. The question is: what are we busy about?”. If I were to append his quandary, I’d say, “It is not enough to be busy. The question is: what are we focused on?”.


There is a vast difference between being busy and being focused. The former involves the typical tropes of productivity

Being focused, on the other hand, involves attention, awareness, and intentionality.

Minimalists don’t focus on having less, less, less. We focus on making room for more: more time, more peace, more creativity, more experiences, more contribution, more contentment, more freedom. Clearing the clutter frees up the space.


Minimalism is the thing that gets us past the things so we can make room for life’s important things—which aren’t things at all.

Focus is committing to less. applying more focus to a few chosen tasks, saying “no” to almost everything.

Being focused will result in getting less done than being busy but I assure you that it will be far more rewarding.

The inspiration for this came from “The Minimalists”

Read one of their great books here

Watch their new inspirational movie here

Less is Now

They’ve built a movement out of minimalism. Longtime friends Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus share how it’s never too late to start over with less, and why simplifying can lead us to more fulfilling lives. Directed by Matt D’Avella.


See you next week...