How simple was your life when you were growing up, and how complex is it now? Think back about the days when life was indeed simpler!

T. S. Eliot wrote, “Finding a way to live the simple life is one of life’s supreme complications.”

Each of us, at one time or another, has felt overwhelmed. We hesitate to take a holiday because when we return, the paperwork will be piled sky-high. We hesitate to attend a professional development program because when we return, our development will be stifled by the amount of work that has been generated during our absence.

Now that I no longer work 100 hours per week, my life seems simple. In reality, life is not that simple – is it because of the plethora of material things in our lives?

Think back to your childhood. My dad was a contractor, so we had lots of bathrooms in our home, and even with 5 kids sharing bedrooms, we did not have to share a bath. My best friend’s family consisted of mom and dad, plus two teenage girls. They had a 4 bedroom home with only one bathroom, and there were constant battles to see who got to use the bathroom first. If someone had a date, or required additional prep time, the coveted bathroom could in inaccessible.

In my home, we lacked closet space, and most hanging space seemed to come from freestanding dressers with closet rods. When I think of how our own kids have grown up, with private rooms most of the time, luxury kitchens, wonderful yards, a phone in every room and more…I wonder how we existed. When our daughters ask me how we managed without pantyhose, I smile and think back to the days of nursing school with garter belts and hose.

Fast forward and think of your own kids and how much ‘stuff’ they have! Think about how complex their lives are. Would they benefit from simplicity? Do they need T.S. Eliot to help them find the simple life?