Simplicity is the Ultimate Form of Sophistication

Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication. – Leonardo da Vinci

Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication
It’s all about doing the math.

I am inspired to simplify my life. Things seem to take from my life more than they give. I am going to adopt this rule for my home:

Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.
-William Morris

Things take time, and I have found that is just not the way I want to spend my time.

Plus I love small spaces like these:

simple-living-simplicity-tiny-houses

I have always loved small spaces. I remember when I was a little girl. My first home was a tiny 2 bedroom single wide mobile home. There was barely enough room to walk between the bed and the wall. After a few years, we moved from a tiny 2 bedroom single wide mobile home to a double wide. I wanted the utility room to be my room. Maybe we gravitate to what is familiar. The size was about the same. And it was the first door on the right. My parents thought it would be best to put the washer and dryer in that room. I had to take a large room. I still love small spaces, but I like them to feel big now.

Perhaps that is growth.

But the truth is I don’t even think my closet will fit into a small space not to mention everything else.

I crave the simple life, but something happens between my heart and head, and they can never seem to come to a meeting of the minds on this idea.

I am not a hoarder, but I have stuff.

Part of it has come from being in one place for too long. For the first seven years of my adult life, I lived in 10 different places and practically lived out of a suitcase. For the last 20 years I have lived in the same place. I definitely accumulated more stuff the latter way.

There is something to be said for traveling light in life, physically, mentally, and spiritually.

The other part of the problem is hanging on to the sentimental things of life after you have children. I guess it’s an effort to hang onto what you know is slipping away. Time goes by so quickly when your children are growing up. Everything becomes special.

This conflicts with the other voice in my head. I never seem to look at a large house and have the same feeling as I do when I look at a tiny house. I have seen some amazing things done with the interior of small spaces. They can actually be very beautiful…and very freeing. Plus, I care more about where I live than the size of it. If living in something smaller puts me that much closer to a location I would love, then I am all for it.

Think of the little time it would take to clean it. Who wants to spend their free time cleaning a big house?

The cost of heating and cooling it. Think of all the extra vacations we could have.

The cost of doing some really nice things to a small space would be so much less than what it would cost to do to a larger space.

Everything about it just says freedom.

So this is what I am going to do.

The Simple Living Project (30 Days at a Time)

De-cluttering and Simplifying: 5 Things a Day or 1 Bag a Week

I love the idea of being free. Less stuff. Less work. Less expenses. Less definitely seems to equal more in this case.

I am going to commit to this for 30 days. And maybe another 30 days after that. I don’t know if I will ever get down to being able to live in one of the tiny spaces I like, but I will definitely have freed up some space, time, and resources by the end of 30 days. My goal is to throw out one trash bag of stuff every week. I am going to shoot for 5 things to get rid of every day. At the end of 30 days, that will be 4 bags and 150 things lighter. If I do this for three months, I will be 12 bags and 450 things lighter.

This project can even be done for a whole year.

1 thing a day = 365 less things at the end of a year.
3 things a day = 1095 less things at the end of a year.
7 things a day = 2555 less things at the end of a year.

The great thing about this is that by doing it daily, we make it a habit.

I want to stick with this, so to keep myself accountable, I will be posting my progress on facebook!

Who’s in? Who wants to join me? You can start anytime! Just comment if you are!

The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.
-Hans Hofmann

Creating a beautiful space,

~Topaz

Read about others who are fans of simple living…
Laura Catherine | Inspired Living Through Art, Healthy Eating, and Adventures

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20 thoughts on “Simplicity is the Ultimate Form of Sophistication

  1. Pingback: Eliminate The Unnecessary So That The Necessary May Speak » where art meets soul

  2. Topaz

    Well, today was an insanely productive day for my simple living project. Are you ready???

    FIFTY-FIVE more things GONE.

    Before you get too impressed, I must confess most of it was old magazines. But, hey, they are still gone.

    FOUR bags gone.

    Day 13: 115 unnecessary things less in my life

  3. Topaz

    I have almost two bags full. It adds up.

    Another 15 things less.

    Day 12: 60 unnecessary things less in my life

  4. Topaz

    For the last two days…

    One observation I made…waiting until the last minute and trying to do this just before bed is not the best time to do it. It requires a little too much thought. I need to add this to my morning or afternoon routine.

    10 things less, 1 for Goodwill and 9 for trash
    .
    Day 9: 45 unnecessary things less in my life

  5. Topaz

    From the weekend…

    10 things less, 1 for Goodwill and 9 for trash. You know, I was thinking. If I do this through the end of the year, that will be about 450 things less. Wouldn’t that be great if I could keep it up that long!

    Day 6: 30 unnecessary things less in my life

  6. Topaz

    Five things less today, 3 for Goodwill and 2 for trash. While it’s not always easy, I feel empowered with each item that goes in a bag.

    Day 4: 20 unnecessary things less in my life

  7. Sheri

    I love this post! I have a small house and, while I love it, I sometimes feel like it’s not “good enough” because it’s not big and modern. Your post makes me appreciate my small house more. And it has a huge picture window that looks out onto a small lake that sparkles in the sun which is the whole reason I wanted this house!

    Sheri from Live Lovingly 🙂

    • Topaz

      Oh, Sheri, it sounds BEAUTIFUL! There is a huge tiny house movement, and a lot of people are trading in their big houses and big mortgages for the simple life. It’s wonderful to see the shift. It is my dream to live out in the country and have beautiful, spacious views and a little water would make it perfect. I would even settle for a natural looking, salt water pool. The more I think about the natural looking pool, the better it sounds. I think I would live in a shack to have all of that. It’s a good thing I love tiny houses. Your place sounds beautiful. And it’s never about size. It’s about what we do with the space that we have, creating a beautiful space. They come in all sizes.

      Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing! <3

  8. Topaz

    I had a busy day today, so I’m posting a little late. I am 5 things lighter, all for Goodwill.

    I just watched a commercial for foodforthepoor.org and could not help but think what a first world problem it is to have so much stuff that we have to actively declutter while these tiny little children live in tin shack homes with no doors that flood when it rains, no food, no medicine, and no clean water. It really hit home what a ridiculous amount of unnecessary stuff that we have.

    Day 3: 15 unnecessary things less in my life

    ~Topaz

  9. Topaz

    I got my 5 for today, 3 for Goodwill and 2 for trash! I am SO glad to be doing this even if it feels hard sometimes. I am finding it is pushing me to look deeper for those things that are unnecessary.

  10. Virginia

    It was a busy day since it is my son’s birthday but did manage to throw some junk out that was laying around. Slow start but looking forward to tomorrow. (Working on my positive thinking too). 🙂

    • Topaz

      You brought up a great point. It seems that taking action and improving our attitude usually walk hand in hand. I feel empowered just starting.

  11. Topaz

    I did mine for today! Five things…2 for Goodwill and 3 for trash! I SO need to do this. I am just really glad right about now that I did not go with 10 things a day. The mental discussions I have with myself seriously slow down the process. I’m so glad that you guys are doing this with me! How did your first day go?

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