Simple Is The New Cool
“It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential. Simplicity is the key to brilliance” — Bruce Lee
A few weeks ago, on my birthday, my wife and I sat together on our terrace watching a video she had put together from all of my friends and family wishing me a happy birthday.
We had just another baby, and I couldn’t believe she had found the time to contact people from all over the world.
I love my life here in small town Catalunya, but I miss my friends and for half an hour, once again, my wife gave me the one thing I wanted and needed the most.
The first time my dad met my wife, exactly twenty minutes in to talking to her, he leaned over to me and said, “Michael, never come home.”
I had just moved to Barcelona a few months prior, and of course my parents were skeptical when I called and told them I had met someone, and we were planning on getting married. But it took my dad just nineteen minutes more than it took me to realize the girl sitting across from us was special.
The video my wife made mentioned above is reason number 3,911 why I am glad for once I listened to my dad.
However, the number one reason why, my wife is my home, is because over the last 7 years she has taught me how to finally enjoy life and she accomplished this by teaching me the beauty of simplifying it.
How to Make Simple Your New Cool
Lesson #1 — My wife has taught me beauty is found in the details:
My wife and I met when I came into her office to give a seminar. I thought she was hot. She thought I was interesting. And somehow that mix led us to eating lunch together afterwards.
As we were wandering the rainy streets looking for a place to eat, suddenly the sun came out, and when it did, my wife stopped, closed her eyes, tilted up her head, and smiled.
Our kids are cute, and maybe the image of watching them sleep will be what I see on my deathbed. But only after the image of my little one closing her eyes and taking in the sun on that chances of rain day in October, 2010.
I had never, and will never, see anything more beautiful.
The moments that stop the world, only happen when you stop and appreciate the world — and over the last seven years, by just being her adorable self, my wife has taught me how to do just that.
“There isn’t a lack of beauty in the world. Simply a lack of people looking for it.” — My Wife
Lesson #2 — My wife has taught me to prioritize connections over contacts:
A few days ago a mutual friend said something to us that they were going to bed happy because they had reached X number of followers.
After hearing this, my wife shook her head and said to me, “My God I hope our kids never gauge their happiness on how cool other people think they are.”
My wife has 187 Facebook connections and she knows every single one of them. She has the smallest list of phone numbers I have ever seen in a phone. She is not a hermit. In fact, she is quite social. However, she is social with the right people.
“The best way to make new friends is by being a good friend to the ones you already have.” — My Wife
Lesson #3 — My wife has taught me not to buy anything I can’t afford:
One of the biggest lessons my wife has taught me is the importance of appreciating what we have instead of dreaming about what we don’t.
Everything my wife loves is either free or extremely cheap. She priorities these things because she knows that any big ticket item that may make us happy in the short-run is not worth it if it creates stress in the long-run.
Do we really need this?
Do you think in a few months you will still be excited about this?
These are the questions my wife asks me whenever my dreams are bigger than my wallet. She asks me these questions because she knows that what we have today is more important than what we may have tomorrow.
“There is nothing we do not already have that could make me happier.” — My Wife
Lesson #4 — My wife has taught me to practice small, but daily gestures of love:
You know what makes me smile? The little notes my wife consistently leaves for me around the house.
You know what else makes me smile? Watching her gently kiss the forehead of our latest addition every morning as he is sleeping in her arms.
If my wife understands one thing about living a good life it is that little, but consistent gestures of love, keep love alive.
My wife doesn’t make gratitude lists.
She doesn’t have to.
Instead she consistently asks herself what she can do during the day to improve the life of someone she cares about. Then she does what she can, with what she has, to make that happen.
“The people that help others never have to ask for help from others” — My Wife
Lesson #5 — My wife has taught me the importance of embracing a healthy lifestyle
The first time I had dinner with my wife’s family her mother brought out a giant bowl of fruit for dessert. Everyone at the table was excited. I, however, was horrified.
Despite my initial shook that my wife considers fruit a dessert, over the last seven years she has taught me that we are not only a direct reflection of the company we keep — we are also a direct reflection of what we eat.
My wife has never used a fancy diet or overloaded herself with classes in May to look good in June. She doesn’t have to, and the reason for this is simple. Every single day she drinks loads of water, makes healthy food decisions, and walks everywhere.
She doesn’t do this to look good, she makes these decisions so that every day she feels good and since I have adopted the same mentality I have never felt better.
“Simple is the new cool” — My Wife
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