The Gifts of Living a Simple Life

gifts of simple living coffee book flowers simple life

When people hear that I choose to live simply they shake their heads and say they could never survive a simple life. In their minds they are picturing life in a cabin with one chair, one plate, and one fork. Or, a house that is cold, colorless, empty, and devoid of personality. And then, they imagine having to wear old, worn, and frumpy thrift store clothes, maybe even pioneer dresses. To them simple living sounds down right miserable.

But, the truth is, it’s nothing like that at all.   Continue reading

What My Trees Taught Me about Perseverance

tree fence pinwheel persevere perseverance © 2017 Linda Luke

I have always been amazed by the trees along the fence line of my yard. They managed to persevere and shape themselves around the obstacles in their way as they grew.

Many of them have chain link fence that goes right through them. Others have poles or pieces of brick integrated into them in odd places. Continue reading

Intentions for Being – Declarations for Life

intentions

(I first wrote this in January 2015 and came across it today. The words and intentions I shared feel even more powerful now as I am about to turn 63. It’s time to re-commit and share them again.)

There are a lot of goals and resolutions set at this time of year about what we want to do or accomplish.  While I am playing with some of the doing stuff, I felt more called to look at how I want to be and show up in this world. Continue reading

Let Your Heart Guide You to Your Best Life

 

let your heart guide you listen to your heart with earbuds

It’s almost like we are running a race. I hear over and over again from my clients and friends that they are struggling to keep up with the speed of life. I feel it, too.

When we are racing through our days we lose the guidance of our hearts and are more likely to make unconscious choices that do not serve us well. Continue reading

Moving Cross Country to a Small Town: My First Year

moving to a small town house

This week is the one year anniversary of my moving from a busy city in Southern California to a rural small town in Missouri.

My intention was to live a more simple life and be close to my 3 grandchildren. After 62 years as a SoCal girl I anticipated some culture shock and knew I had a lot to learn about my new way of life.

Looking back over this first year I feel that I have done well, but am also aware that I am in a process that will take some time. Continue reading

3 Steps for Letting Go of Guilt and Regrets

guilt guilty dog with teddy bear

One of my clients the other day was experiencing a lot of regret for how a past relationship ended. She felt guilty that she hadn’t tried harder and hurt the other person involved. The guilt she felt was eating her up from the inside out and impacting how she approached her current relationship, possibly putting it at risk.  Continue reading

A Sense of Order Soothes Your Soul

 

sense of order orderly things

Many of my clients when they first come to me lead chaotic lives. They are usually on the run, can’t find things when they need them, and often seem to live being tossed from one drama to the next. Their lives are full of anxiety, stress, and unhappiness.

When I suggest bringing a sense of order to their lives, they often resist. It’s too hard! They don’t have the time! And, they feel that if they slow down for a minute all the things they are juggling will fall at once. But, they trust me and usually give it a try, only to find that order brings them peace and allows them to be more effective in the end.

You don’t need to be stressed or anxious to benefit from bringing more order and harmony into your life. We can all appreciate the peace and contentment it brings. When we feel peaceful our lives flow more naturally and we gain a sense of freedom. Continue reading

The Simple Truth about Fear, Worry, and Anxiety

child afraid fear worry

Some of my clients are shorter than me, but only because they are kids. We talk about things like developing their own code of honor, strategies for school, and family issues. I’m often surprised though, about the level of worry and anxiety they are experiencing at such a young age and am grateful I can help them.

Coaching kids can be rewarding and fun. They are curious, engaged, and open to new ideas. They also challenge me to keep things simple and create metaphors that help them remember.

It occurred to me that we adults can benefit from these simple metaphors and perspectives, too. So, here is my child’s version of talking about worry and the fear it creates. Continue reading

My First 7 Months After Moving to a Small Town in Missouri

mailbox small town life

It’s hard to believe I have been here in small town Missouri for 7 months. It feels like I was in a fog the first 3 or 4 trying to get settled in. There were things to learn about yard care, what is available in town, updates to the house, and my initiation into the culture of small town football.

Being near my family has been a blessing and they also keep me pretty busy. I love the time I get to spend with them and never take it for granted.

My first real winter is almost over. Continue reading

The Cost of Postponing Little Things

 

to do list getting things done lifecoachlinda.com postponing

Have you ever had little things on your calendar or to do list that you kept putting off?

I know I do. I could be an expert at it. It’s a shame I can’t get paid for it.  Continue reading

How to Get Back on Track after Falling into Inertia

 

sad angel getting back on track

Don’t get me wrong. I love my new life here in small town Missouri, but it hasn’t always been a smooth ride.

Several months ago I fell while out for a walk and hurt my arm. I could hardly move for a couple of days and then settled into a long journey of healing. There were many limitations to what I could do for what felt like a very, very long time.

Last month I caught the flu, or should I say it caught me. There must be something about these Missouri  bugs because I didn’t get get sick in California, at least not for a long time. This flu knocked me down and it took several weeks to start feeling well again.

Add to that some plumbing problems and all of those little things called life and it feels like I got off track. Really off track…  Continue reading

Ask the Coach – My Answers to Your Questions

Questions & answers ask the coach lifecoachlinda.com

I’ve spent some time on Quora answering questions about life for readers and thought it might be fun to share some of the answers here. Maybe you have some of the same questions.

I may start doing this as a regular feature and welcome your questions for future posts. You can email me or contact me through my website to ask what is on your mind. In the meantime, here are some of my answers: Continue reading

7 Ways to Save Money on Entertainment, Recreation and Fun

 

Piggy bank save money life coach linda

For years I was a single mom. My son and I would consider bean burritos at Taco Bell a big night out. I learned to be thrifty out of necessity and now that I am in my 60’s and still wanting to save money for my future, those lessons continue to serve me well.

Some might say I’m cheap, but others like minimalists, extreme couponers, or the guy who writes the blog: Things I Find in the Trash, might think I live extravagantly. I feel like I have found a nice balance between enjoying life and protecting my finances at the same time. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have the same money fears that plague most of us. Continue reading

A Simple and Powerful Year End Process

 

woman writing year end process lifecoachlinda.com

I believe that it is important to review and close out the year that is ending to learn all that we can from it.  This simple year end process also opens the door to a deeper understanding for heartfelt intentions you want to set for the New Year.

I encourage you to find quiet time and a snugly place to curl up with pen and paper and ask yourself these questions: Continue reading

30 Fun Ways to Get into the Christmas Spirit and Spread Holiday Cheer

christmas-spirit

My son started celebrating Christmas early this year, trying to convince people to “Get Their Christmas On” long before Thanksgiving. At first I thought he was crazy, but then I could see how happy he became with this new focus on the holidays and their meaning. Continue reading

2 Fun Ways to Make Your Thanksgiving More Meaningful

thanksgiving special decor

I do not have the benefit of family nearby to spend my Thanksgiving with, but don’t feel bad for me. I have a nice long visit with my loved ones coming up. I also have invitations for breakfast and dinners with other Thanksgiving misfits. And, sometimes I choose to spend this special holiday alone as a restful, self-nurturing day.

Whatever my day looks like, there are a couple Thanksgiving practices I never miss that fill my heart and feed my soul. I feel more grounded in the meaning of the holiday because of them. You might enjoy them, too. Continue reading

Return to Gratitude

gratitude grateful

For me, it shows up as a sense of being disconnected from myself and my higher power. I start to get mired in what is going wrong in my life or the world. Sometimes fantasies of impending doom or victim stories play through my mind. If I let it go too long, it can turn into depression.

I don’t know what to call it, but I think you might know what I am talking about.

What I do know is that when we start to fall into this trap of negativity, the quickest path back to our true selves includes a return to gratitude. Continue reading

Adjusting to Small Town Life – The Shopping Dilemma

small town shopping in Centralia MO

I’m still adjusting to my new small town life in Missouri. One of the things that still has me spinning is the whole shopping thing. Just when I thought I had it figured out and was settling in, fall weather came. And, I heard winter is on it’s way too.

My intention is to stock up and have what I need from the local city before Thanksgiving to avoid going there during the holiday craziness. Columbia is 30 to 40 minutes away, depending on what part of town you are going to.  I’m trying to shop local as much as possible, but there are some things that are either not available or cost much higher here. Continue reading

How to Bring Balance to Your Relationship with Time

relationship with time clock

We can feel driven by our clocks, calendars, and the expectations of others. Even more so by the expectations we have of ourselves.

I don’t know about you, but when I get caught up in this full on “doing” mode, I find that I miss out on the little special moments of my days. When the day comes to an end I may have a long list of wins, but did I really live? Was I fully present with and enjoying what was before me?

There are times when driving ourselves feels good or necessary, but it shouldn’t be our only way of being.

I love achieving goals, but I also crave feeling peaceful and being in touch with magical moments that show up each day.

The following ideas can support you in bringing more balance to how you use time and a sense of grace to your days.

Focus On Your Priorities: It’s easy to get distracted by working hard on the wrong things. Get clear about your values and most meaningful goals. These are what you should be focusing on. If you are spending time on something that is not working, try something else. It’s important to be intentional about how you use your valuable time and life energy.

Watch Out for Time Wasters: For me, it can be checking email or Facebook and then letting something I see sidetrack me. Time wasters can be things you just fall into, people who don’t respect your time, or choices you make influenced by underlying fears and other things that want to keep you stuck. If you find yourself spending too much time off track, return your focus to your intended goal.

Do Little Things with Great Love: Stay present to whatever you are doing. Even mundane activities can bring joy when you focus on their meditative quality. Every moment and every task has it’s own beauty. When you slow down enough to appreciate them your work can be more fulfilling.

Develop the Art of Puttering: Every once in awhile, especially if I have been too caught up in getting things done, I set aside a day for puttering. Puttering is the art of flowing gracefully from one thing to another as they come up naturally. I follow my whims. And, I usually get more things done than I do on those days when I am pushing. At the end of the day I feel at peace and grateful for how much I accomplished without even trying.

Don’t Make It Hard: If I had a dime for every time I told myself something was going to be hard I would be rich. Most of the time the things I was resisting turned out to not be hard at all. I spent more time in the uncomfortable resistance than it took to actually get the thing done. Beware of thoughts or words that make things seem difficult or challenging and if you are really courageous, eliminate the word “hard” from your vocabulary completely.

Give Yourself a Break: Lately, my favorite break is Squirrel Time. I step away from my work to sit on the porch and feed squirrels. They amuse me, warm my heart, and connect me with nature. Other breaks might include going for a walk, stretching, having a snack, dancing, or reading. Science says that our minds and bodies are more efficient when we give them regular breaks. I know they work for me.

Feed Your Engine: You will be more efficient in how you use your time when your mind and body are able to operate at their fullest potential. This means that eating healthy, taking breaks, exercise, and all those common sense things you know you should do will help you be more effective in the long run.

Having a healthy relationship with time is all about balance. You can push yourself at times, but not all the time. It is important to allow space in your days to observe special moments and let your work flow with natural focus instead of forcing things. When you do, you will limit stress, feel more peace within, and still get things done. And that, is a good thing.

Related posts:

Slow Down to Get More Done

Simple Abundance

Choosing What Not To Do