One of my favorite experiences on my Morocco trip was spending time exploring the Berber villages in the Atlas Mountains. 😍
The Berber people are the original inhabitants of most of Northern Africa dating back as far as 5000 BC 🤯 and their culture still remains substantially intact to this day.
Berber means “free people” and after spending time here… I understand. Berbers live in harmony with the land, are very communal and typically have most of what they need within their own communities. They are not caught up in all of the materialistic trappings that often keep us feeling stuck. Food, family, and community seem to be emblematic of their culture.
The Berber people were so warm and inviting. They are extremely proud of their rich heritage and traditions and I’m grateful they were so eager to share their culture and beautiful villages with us.
With all of our money and modern conveniences, most of us remain slaves to our minds, slaves to status symbols and to our possessions. With all the “luxuries” we have, how many people in America are genuinely happy vs. depressed, anxious and downright miserable? We say we live in a free society, but how many of us know what it feels like to be truly free? 🤔
The more I grow and experience other ways of living, the less I care about everything that I thought would make me happy. Money, homes, cars, and status will mean nothing on your death bed. Money is a means to an end, the moment you’re seeking money for money’s sake, you’ll never be satisfied. No one wishes they bought a more expensive car or a bigger house in their final hours. What matters is how you lived, how you loved and who you impacted on your journey. Yet, and still, so many Americans are breaking their backs to compete in an imaginary race only to find ourselves miserable and full of regret in the end.
I truly believe the key to life is living more simply and in harmony with your environment. It’s easier to find peace when you focus less on meaningless “stuff” and more on meaningful experiences and people. Spend more time in nature and with people who fill your soul with peace and happiness. Open your mind and heart to people different than you and hear their stories and learn from them. Allow yourself to truly enjoy the beauty of the rich colors all around you, the intoxicating scents of flowers in bloom, the mesmerizing hues of the sky on a cloudless day, or get lost in the sound of birds chirping around you. The beauty of these things can ever be taken away from you no matter what’s happening in your life.
You don’t have to move into the wild and be a nomad to accomplish the peace that comes with a simplified life.
Here are a few ways you can simplify your life and get back in touch with what’s important:
- Make an evening or morning walk part of your daily routine and leave the phone at home. This is a great way to unplug and get in touch with yourself & your surroundings.
- Purge and declutter your home of things you no longer need and donate the items to the less fortunate. (Tip: If you haven’t used or worn it in a year and there is no sentimental value, toss it!)
- Set a social media limit for each day and keep your phone out of reach when you’re doing other tasks. Be mindful of how you’re spending your time online. Are you learning something, being inspired or are you caught up in gossip or comparing yourself to others?
- Examine your big purchases and make sure it’s something you genuinely want & need AND that you can truly afford it. (There is no reason to cause yourself financial stress over a frivolous purchase to impress people you probably don’t even like!)
- Consider downsizing if you realize you have way too much space for your lifestyle. Creating a beautiful & thoughtful home that brings you peace is way more important than having a big house. (Bonus: The cost savings from downsizing can help fuel things that actually feed your soul.)
- Write a list of all of your commitments and create a plan to opt-out of anything that you don’t have to do or what doesn’t bring you joy.
- Slow down and stop multitasking so you can allow yourself to mindfully focus on one task at a time.
Life is easier than we think. We make it more complicated than it has to be. Find your peace by learning to simplify and JUST BE!