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What a quiet, restful, refreshing thought! That’s the kind of Green Life that I crave: Natural, Restful, Simple Life.
Today I am reviewing two books on the theme of simplicity:
Now, I will be the first to tell you that with a family of small children and a full time job outside the home (and this little blog), my life is not exactly simple. Not even close. But, as I look at others in my same situation, I see that it could be much more complicated if I let it! I think the path to simplicity is one part attitude, and two parts intentionality. You have to chill out, and then you have to take action! Today, I want to introduce you to two books that can help you do just that!
One Bite at a Time by Tsh Oxenreider, and Simple Living by Lorilee Lippincott are both great resources on simplifying life. I really enjoyed both books, which were similar in some ways, but refreshingly unique in others!
Both books offer the following great ideas:
- Simplification is a process!
- It’s easy to break down the work of simplification into smaller tasks – tackling just one problem area at a time.
- Simplifying little bits can make a huge difference!
One Bite at a Time: 52 Projects for Making Life Simple is a comprehensive, specific task list. The author, Tsh, alternates between new habits, and specific tasks that all work towards de-stressing and simplifying life. The overall project list was overwhelming to me at first, until I noticed that I’m already doing a few of these. #5 Menu Planning? Check! #26 Cook staples from scratch? Check! # 24 Switch to non-toxic cleaners? Check!
However, Tsh suggests tons of “opportunity” areas for me. # 25 Organize your photo collection? # 33 Streamline your kid’s art collections? #11 Clean as you go? #27 Streamline your email? #51 Get help? It’s like she peeked into my house and wrote the book for ME! Maybe I should start with #39: Create a Daily To-do list!
My favorite feature of One Bite at a Time is a big chart in the book that breaks down all the projects into different categories like Living Green, Money Management, Organizing Your Mind, Taking Care of Yourself, Relationships and Time Management. Many projects fit into several categories. I love the way she organized them, because then I can focus first on the project categories which are most important to me.
Tsh advocates taking your time, and skipping around: starting with improving on projects you already have going, or maybe jumping headfirst into the one that would be the most impactful for your life. This is a great read for the detail oriented, take your time and do-it-right kind of person.
Simple Living is a one month crash course on simplification. The author, Lorilee, provides 30 lessons, with a 30-60 minute assignment for each one. She guarantees a huge difference in your life if you work your way through the lessons. Minimalism is the way to go, and at times, Lorilee is harsh! (Clear EVERYTHING off my kitchen counters?!)
I found that the lessons in this book tended to be a little more metaphorical in nature. There are lost of ideas, and lots of encouragement to reflect on how you want life to be. For example, Lesson #3: Quiet suggests lots of different ways to incorporate quiet into your life, and then assigns you to practice immediately.
My favorite lesson was Lesson #15: Dead Plants. In this chapter, Lorilee notes that we all have these things sitting around our house that are good (like plants!). But because life is busy and complicated, we don’t get to them, and they become unhelpful clutter (like dead plants!). Even though our intentions are good, the stuff just makes everything more complicated, and probably adds guilt to the emotional pile as well. Immediately upon reading this I knew I have to get rid of my immersion blender, which has been sitting in it’s unopened box on my kitchen floor for a YEAR! It’s a perfect example of good intentions (pureed real-food soups) gone bad (box on the floor in my way every day).
Lorilee cuts straight to the chase, hits you right between the eyes, and empowers you to make some tough choices. The hard hitting, fast pace of this book makes this a great read for the get-it-done kind of person.
Are you ready for the simple life? Both of these books are part of a collection of books on Intentional/Simple Living being offered though the Harvest Your Health eBook Bundle Sale. The books below, together with 67 others are on sale this week for only $37! Click here to view more details
How have you simplified your life lately? Do you have any “dead plants” to get rid of?
Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on them you’ll be taken to a website where you can purchase the Harvest Your Health E-Book bundle. I’ll make a commission for each purchase. Thanks in advance for your support!