Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Simplicity and the Challenge of Getting to Essence


by Janet M. Shlaes, Ph.D.

“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.”

~ Albert Einstein

How do you move through the world – from a place of simplicity or complexity? Personally, I am a fan of simplicity and getting to the essence of what is most important to me to spend my time, energy and resources on. This can often be challenging when living in a complex world with a myriad of choices for one's time and energy. I find that having so many choices and distractions for my attention can be both exhausting and seductive. Have you ever been drawn to a choice that you knew in your heart was not a healthy one for you? Most of us have at some point in our lives. For me, getting to essence and making things as simple as possible requires a combination of factors: self-awareness, intention, commitment, patience, perseverance, perspective and appreciation. Self-awareness requires my going inward and connecting with what is truly important to me with regard to values and creating a life worth living. The next step toward simplicity is clarity with regard to what I want to bring into this world, along with the type of life that I want to live. Commitment to making choices and setting goals that align with my intentions follows, along with the patience and perseverance to pursue my stated goals. Perspective, although oftentimes challenging, is critical for motivation and letting go of what isn’t working; it also facilitates a much needed sense of humor. Last, but definitely not least, is appreciation – for what is, for what isn’t and for what is possible.

How do you move through the world? Are you actions aligned with what you hold most dear to you? How can you simplify your approach to all that you are and do to simplify in an increasingly complex world?


For addition insights and observations, check out the following posts:

Learn Something New

Embracing "Good Enough"

Breakdown to Breakthrough


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