I have sought simplicity over the last few years. It is a slow process as you have to develop an appreciation for simplicity. One example might be when I enjoy the more subtle flavors of a hamburger served plain with just onions instead of every sauce and cheese known to mankind. I think people can come to enjoy simplicity in their lives when their focus is no longer on being the richest, the biggest or the most popular. It all comes down to acceptance of who your really are and perhaps the person you see in the mirror occupies a smaller space in the world than believes your ego.
Tom T Hall wrote the song “Little Bitty” which was later recorded by Alan Jackson. The lyrics of this song tells of the enjoyment of simplicity and that the greatest rewards are found in daily life such as “a little bit of beer and a television set.” Hall also wrote that “it’s alright, being little bitty,” which gives everyone the permission to enjoy their lives and not live their lives so that others are impressed. One of my favorite movie lines is from “Garden State” where one character utters the line, “I like being unimpressive, I sleep better.”
A second line from “Little Bitty” is “life goes on for a little bitty while.” I am going to back up this lyric with a line from William Shakespeare who said “oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive.” I see so many people living lies to impress others. They lie about their job, they drive a car or live in a house that speaks to wealth when the truth is the picture they present to the world is paper-thin and made of credit cards. The time spent to maintain these falsehoods is much greater than what a person is allowed on this earth. Just be yourself, I don’t care what you own other than your good heart and your good word.
I recently watched a documentary titled, “Tiny.” It details the life of one young man as he builds, then lives, in his own tiny home. A tiny home would be best described as a residence under 200 square feet-about the size of a nice, walk-in closet. The average family home has doubled in size from the period of 1970-2010, which is fine. However, the owners of these homes are sometimes a slave to maintaining these overblown statements of self to the point they can’t enjoy the structure nor the family who lives inside it. I think I would need some awfully compelling reasons to live this small however it is a lesson in how living small offers it’s own freedom to live your life and love simplicity. Without the financial burden of such a large home you are able to spend the time on yourself, your relationship with God, your family, your pets, your health, etc.
I’d like to say I hope I haven’t offended anyone with what I have said however that would not be truthful. It seems to me that growth often comes with some offense. When someone offends you with their opinion it forces you to defend your own beliefs (at least to yourself) or abandon them if they have no defense, or continue to live a lie. Living simply seems an easy defense and make sense-maybe sense enough to write a song.