I have a new mantra when I shop these days, “Oh My God! I definitely don’t need this that badly.” Blame it on the high prices, recession, ridiculously expensive groceries, whatever, I am learning a new thing. I am learning to simplify my life more than I ever thought would be possible. I am not giving up everything and moving to the forest, but I have realized that half the things that I assumed would make my life just perfect are too darn expensive. I’d rather be less perfect than guilty of splurging on things I don’t really need. From donating items around the house to making lists, to making sure everything I have in the fridge can be used up, simplifying is what I am into now. Maybe it is the place, maybe it is the really high level of consumer driven everything around here shopping is more of an obsession than I have known. I don’t remember shopping till my feet hurt when I was growing up. Our biggest shopping would probably be before Diwali and my grandmother would go and buy everything. Itwould be exciting for us because we would get to see all the new dresses and stuff. Other than that every month, my grandfather used to take us to the big grocery store in town – a very stately and somber Rangaswamy chettiar and sons to shop for monthly groceries. We could pick any chocolate or icecream we wanted and wait near the cashier who was also the owner with grandpa, while the list was handed out and a lady would scurry around picking out things. The best part would come later when he would take us to Orchard and buy us a big mug of fresh fruit juice. That was that. Things have changed now, it would be a bit stupid on my part if I wanted to expect the same now, here, miles away from home. But thinking about it I realized how it was in the little things I gained happiness and how it took so little effort and very little shopping to keep me happy. Don’t mistake me, now that I am used to it I cannot live without my iPod, books, phone and computer but everything else I can pare down. But everything else maybe I can. Atleast I want to try.
That will be this weeks’ word: Simplify!