Simple! What does the word “SIMPLE” do for you? When I think it, hear it or read it, I find the word “simple” to be a true stress reliever. I’m serious. Does it do that to you? Try it. Say it slowly, aloud: “simple”. Doesn’t that lighten the load, if just for a moment?
Real Simple magazine’s title attracts me every time I see it on the news stand. The cover design is so attractive and, just like it’s name, it’s Real Simple.
And yet the magazine is not that simple at all. It is many, many pages long, filled with tons of advertising and some articles. (I haven’t counted it up but it feels like the ads outweigh the content by far.)
So, I don’t usually buy a copy because it is just too big and, sorry Real Simple magazine, COMPLICATED! I don’t have that much time to read it. But the next time that I’m at the store, my eyes will inevitably be grabbed by that title once more. I just love the word “Simple”.
…because we all need a break sometimes.
John C. Maxwell tells a story in his book “Developing the Leader Within You” about a young college student who changed her approach to life for the greater good. She called her newly developed life change “planned neglect“.* She even attributes her rise to success as a concert violinist to it.
You see, she came to realize that it was going to take a serious investment of her time practicing violin in order to achieve her goal of reaching the top in the profession. Yet, she was finding that her habit of first making her bed in the morning, dusting, and basically cleaning up her apartment–then hurrying off to her class–was robbing her of valuable, quality time as an aspiring musician.
So, she gave herself permission to delay making the bed and other “essentials” in order to throw herself into becoming the best violinist possible. She didn’t skip it; she simply put it off until later. Planned neglect! Don’t you love it!
What can we abandon for a few hours, or even a day, to achieve “simple”? Are there some “good things” that are draining you of the energy you need to be your best? John C. Maxwell would say in such a case that “The good is the enemy of the best.”
So, try it. Take some time off for a little “at home vacation”. Regroup and revitalize. Read a book, go for a leisurely walk, take a nap. Take some time off. Drop your plans for a little while. Go “simple” and see how much better you feel!
BTW…Contrary to my quirk about the complicatedness of the magazine, I love Real Simple’s website! It is easy to maneuver, beautifully illustrated and filled with great content. Worth every click! Check it out: Real Simple
*Maxwell, John C., Developing the Leader Within You, Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1993 pg28