I was thinking:
Remember Orange Soda? When was the last time you had Orange Soda? Flavored sodas are not as popular as it used to be around here. Nevertheless I have fond memories of enjoying them as a child. People of my generation, for the most part can say we have had these delights in our lifetime. Likelihood is we can still remember the taste. Nowadays we don’t even keep soda of ANY kind in the home (health reasons of course).
As a result our children might never know what these taste like. Big loss?? maybe not. But definitely a small one. Don’t we want our children to have the experiences in life that we now take for granted? Would it not be nice to have our children try (even as a one time treat) Root Beer, Vanilla Coke, Grape Soda, Orange Soda, Cream Soda, and of course Mountain Dew?
It is for this reason that I recently had a “Soda Party” for my daughter. She taste tested all these soda flavors, sodas that up until then she never knew existed. She thoroughly enjoyed it.
Think about how many different food dishes you have had in your lifetime (recipes), how many you will have had before the end. 200?…… Maybe 500? Lets say 1000 even for arguments sake. Turns out there are over 75,287,520 different recipes in the world today. With that being said, likelihood is you will live your entire life never having eaten your potentially favorite food.
There is a food dish out there that will be the best, most delicious food you can ever have, but you will never have it. You will live your whole life, and die having never had the peak of your culinary euphoria. You’ll have to be content dying thinking that your Pan Seared Scallops are the best it gets (or whatever your present dish of perfect delight is).
Now that is a depressing thought. I know. It is not my intention to depress you. But with that thought comes a valuable lesson, and it is this:
Go out there and get experiences! NOW! For yourself, for your loved ones!
Minimalism is just the beginning stage toward the path of a life of intention, not the goal.
What we are all really looking for is a life of meaning, of purpose (whether we realize it or not).
For many people this is unclear because they have too much distraction, too much clutter (mental, emotional, AND physical). Those people only see clearly enough to determine what in their lives IS and IS NOT adding value (luckily this is still enough to start down a righteous path). For them, following the mantras and doctrines of Minimalism is an excellent start toward that life of meaning.
On the other hand, those who see clearly need not refer to the specific mantras and doctrines, as those are just a part of their natural lifestyle philosophy (People far more enlightened than even myself).
Even the term “Minimalism” is just an “outer shell” term meant to have meaning to those outside this lifestyle, and those new to it. To those of us who are established in the life, we are simply living according to our needs, passions, and greater purpose. Influencers like myself need to use this term anyway as a means to convey a better life of focus. I.E. the term “Minimalism” only has meaning in contrast to the life of excess.
With that being said, you may find that many of my future posts will not be for beginners (This post sure wasn’t), but for Minimalism 201 students (for lack of a better term). These posts are for those who are past the “How to I find the strength to get rid of things I don’t use?” conversation. These posts will focus more on the things in life that HAVE value (or should have value) for all of us, and not so much the things that don’t.
The next phase of a life of focus once we get beyond removing clutter and toxins, is life of meaning through service. Altruism.
The freedom of Not Caring
There is a very real freedom in not concerning ourselves over things that truly don’t matter.
I recently found myself enjoying a new found freedom.
I currently drive a Hyundai Accent. A tiny buggy of a car. Now that it is aging, and really starting to wear down, I find myself caring less and less about it’s looks. There is no longer the burden of the “unwritten standard” of vehicle external upkeep weighing me down that people with newer vehicles feel they have to carry. Now that I have shed myself of that burden (thanks to the car aging) I have found myself open to doing something to my car I had never even THOUGHT of before.
And that thing is ……. adding bumper stickers. It has been wonderful adding bumper stickers on my old buggy that I believe best represent me. It very much personalizes my car, identifies it as mine. Even people that know me can easily figure out which car in the lot is mine even if they don’t know what I drive. Before it was just a Hyndai Accent ……. like many others on the road. Another sheep in the heard. Now it has identifiers.
Doing this gives me no desire to get a new vehicle. Just because doing so will put the “New vehicle image” burden back upon my shoulders again. And I will be back to my car conforming to the normal standard ….. another sheep in the heard.
Must it be this way?! Haven’t we heard the phrase “Ya don’t put a bumper sticker on a Cadillac.”? Why is this standard in place? Is the clean and fresh look for a vehicle truly coveted by everyone?
Yeah ….. well ……. It’s boring and conformist. It’s like schools that require uniforms, but for the road.
I have decided. I don’t know what vehicle I will be getting next, but is sure as hell won’t be just like all the others of it’s type on the road. I’m slapping on some mantras, images, and other identifiers.