Life is a little overwhelming, crazy, exhausting, noisy. Choose your synonyms there, but you get the idea. Going on year three of this pandemic, we could all use some precedented times right about now. After these last few years of overload, what I realized we really needed, what I’ve been needing, was simplicity. Simple times.
I’ve caught myself a number of times recently staring at the wall. My brain has been on overload, too many thoughts and decisions. I haven’t had an ounce of extra brain space and there are times where all I can do in that moment is stare. Shut out the world around me and shut down everything.
Our lives have been turned upside down, everything has been confusing, yet we still have to function like normal humans. As the natural problem solver that I am, I decided to spring into action. How could I slow things down, take a step back, and feel like I could function in this crazy world? Not only function, keep other humans alive, those humans being my children and them also functioning.
The answer was simple, the answer was and is simplicity. I should have known that Kacey Musgraves would have all my answers. Her song simple times explains perfectly how I was feeling.
“I think I’m going off of the deep end
I wanna wake up on an island
Throw everybody a peace sign
Put all the static on silent
We could stay up all night
Pour one out for the simple times”
“I need to step away
And if I don’t, I’m gonna go insane
‘Cause being grown up kind of sucks
And I’m really just missing the simple times”
While I won’t be throwing everyone peace sign and waking up on an island any time soon, I decided to do some things that would help quiet the noise and make life seem a little more simple.
Get Off Your Phone
This one may be a no brainer. I cringe every time I get that Sunday notification with my weekly screen time. The alternative I found? Magazines. Simple, but hear me out. We had gone on a road trip and typically in the car you can find me on my phone. When we went to the store for our pre-road trip snack run, I picked up an HGTV magazine. I honestly couldn’t remember the last time I read a magazine, an actual paper magazine. We got home and I ordered two magazine subscriptions. I honestly get so excited when I get them in the mail. It’s simple, but there is something so refreshing about it. It’s built in “me time” when they come in and it’s been good for the soul.
Turn Off the TV
We admittedly have been watching too much over the last year. It’s been survival and I know that is ok. We are now somewhat out of that fog and we needed to slow things down, spend more time as a family, away from the tv. I found this four pack of card games that are appropriate for our four-year-old that included matching, old maid, spoons, and crazy 8s. Playing one or several of these have become our nightly routine and it’s been so fun to have that time together. Even if my 4 year old kicks my butt at matching every time.
Kick It Old School
While this may seem super trendy, as vinyl had one of its best month of sales ever recorded at the end of last year, we got a record player. As a “geriatric millennial” I grew up in the age of walkmans and discmans, so vinyl was well before my time, but there is something so zen about picking out a record and putting that needle down on the album. It’s the simplicity of it. There isn’t any thinking involved other than which artist we want to listen to that evening and with a very limited collection, there isn’t much to think about.
Kacey was so right, being grown up kind of sucks sometimes, but bringing elements of simplicity definitely helps shut out the noise.