Small Town Simple

The Simplicity Adventures of a Mother and Daughter

Turning Off & Tuning Out

Small Town Simple

The monotony and solitude of a quiet life stimulates the creative mind.  Albert Einstein 

The idea behind living a minimalist life is to embrace those and that which we love and enjoy and rid ourselves of the extraneous that clutters our lives.  And that idea will be lived a little differently by everyone of us and rightly so.  While we live in a world that bombards us with clutter – too much junk food, too much consumerism, too much sound & too much tidbit information that adds no value to our lives – we can carve away some of that excess that weighs us down.  For me, it has become a practice of turning off and tuning out!

For my generation it is the tv.  My sister and I grew up in an age when tv became a part of the daily routine.  Not that our mother agreed with that practice!  She limited our watching time, summers were not for the purpose of sitting around and doing nothing but watching shows and the tv was turned off during dinner.  I can actually remember, as a high school student, going over to a friend’s house on a Sunday afternoon and the family was gathered in the den watching an old movie.  The fact that an old movie was playing stunned me because this was in the day of roughly 4 or 5 channels on television.  There was no Turner Movie Classics at this time!  Yet there they sat, watching an old black & white movie, enjoying themselves.  My friend and I joined them.  Outside of sports, that was my first middle of the day experience with tv.  My mom was still not convinced!  Over the years the continuously running television set has become ubiquitous with our day.  But I have determined my days are less cluttered and weighed down if I turn the tv off!  Because I’m not listening to bad news, worthless chatter or people talking that really have no business being in front of a camera I have gained in the process.  And that includes:

  • more time to think/meditate/pray
  • more time to prepare and plan
  • more time to read
  • more time to cook
  • more time to talk with family and friends
  • more time to clean and tidy my home
  • more time to be creative

Today, we have so much more streaming into our homes besides the television set.  Phones and computers provide a running chatter of???  We know that list is becoming endless.  And while some of that information serves a purpose, we have to admit most of it is just ongoing clutter.  By turning off the electronics, I hear birds chattering on a tree by my front door, I hear children play outside, I hear the wind blow (and sometimes howl!), I hear the crunch of cars passing by on gravel and pavement.  But the point is I hear it!

This has been my choice as I pursue simplicity over a life of mass consumerism. And it is only a way. One way.  I would enjoy hearing from you on changes you’ve made to keep the clutter – in any form – out so you are able to embrace a life that is true to your values!

xo, Carolyn

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