When I was in sixth grade, my family moved from a house in our small Kentucky town into the county. My grandfather owned a farm on the northeastern end of Harrison County for many years, and in 1991, my parents bought a parcel close by and built a log home. We were country folk now, and I spent all of my middle and high school years on that ridgeline property overlooking a ravine below (in Kentucky, we call that a holler).
During the years that followed, I watched our family adopt a simpler life. My mother planted gardens, we picked blackberries from brambles, I explored the woods. Mom began scaling back her trips into town. Simplifying her rhythms and saving fuel in her car, she would journey to Cynthiana once every few days. Our weekends were quiet. I made friends with our “neighbors”—kids in my age bracket who lived 3 or 5 miles away. I often complained about our slow life, but now as an adult, I recognize my parents gave me an abundant gift.
Simple rhythms created spacious margins in those days. And after many years in my 20’s and 30’s spent hustling, striving, overcommitting, and chasing, there is nothing I’d rather do now than get back to that quiet pulse, that measured cadence.
My sense is that there are others who want to mitigate the expeditious but don’t know how. What does it look like to unravel busy and take the road less traveled? Would choosing simplicity in a few small areas amount to more satisfaction overall? Can margins be widened gradually or is an an all-at-once process? Where even to begin?
It is my experience that the busiest among us are often leading lives of quiet desperation, unsure of how to pull back from the structures we’ve built, the schedules we hide behind.
I know because this was my life. But it isn’t anymore.
This year in my business and my blog, I want to offer—with humility—small prompts on how to simplify your rhythms in order to create spacious margins in your life. It won’t be a series of to-do’s (those tend to add to already growing lists) but rather gentle cues and tiny gestures that encourage introspection, courage, and modification.
It is my prayer that my own experiences and lessons over the last three years can be a guide and a balm to your heart and mind, and that 2020 can be the year that points you in the direction of quiet contentment for your home and family.
This will look like thoughtful posts on simplicity and margins and interviews with others who are doing both well. As always, you will find most of my content on Instagram, from tips and quotes to stories and resources. My hope is that you will leave feeling a bit more equipped, and a deep sense of belonging with a community moving in the same direction—toward simplicity and fulfillment.
See you there, pal.