Awakening joy through simplicity (& cookies)

Rachel came to my house yesterday to demonstrate teaching me how to decorate cookies for a live stream audience.  As you can see, her demonstration cookies are darling.   That one on the bottom?  Hmmmm, I think that one was mine.  I just wish you could see the sparkly golden sprinkles on it.  In real life, they really are a distraction from my sadly shaped heart and arrow.  Because, according to Rachel, “Sprinkles cover a multitude of sins”.  Thank God for that.

Because I clearly have so many.  

Between Rachel, Sunny and I, we had a great time trying to juggle entertaining her 20 month old, wrangle the lighting situation, pacify the dogs, and figure out the technology of running a live stream simultaneously on our Facebook and Instagram feeds, all while putting on a calm face for the camera, long enough to produce a fifteen minute cookie demonstration video.  It was seriously hilarious, fun, and a little bit stressful at moments along the way too.  (Especially the moments while I was trying to MacGyver some way to attach two cell phones together on one tripod while keeping them both focused and centered on the island. #sweating #bootstrapping)

It was a beautiful example of exactly what we’re working so hard to do with this GNO.  

Rachel’s mantra is, “The more simple life is, the more space there is for joy.  I’ve simplified by being willing to say no to the things, ways of thinking, commitments and even relationships, that don’t bring me joy. ”  Yet, there is a constant pull in our world, to have more, do more, and be more perfect, more liked, more accepted. We want to cover up all the imperfections with a filter of golden sprinkles, because sitting next to that professionally decorated striped heart just makes my cookie look bad.  Am I right? 

It’s a constant tension. 

And it’s not going away.  It was even with us, while we’re preparing for an entire Girls Night Out with a focus on the joy that comes from a life of simplicity, we were balancing all the things.  Leave it to Sunny to initiate a long conversation afterwards about the way our efforts toward simplicity can co-exist with our markedly privileged lives.  It’s the million-dollar question.  Unless we move to adobe huts on a distant hillside, in a far away land, we’re going to be living here, in the tension between having this life of privilege and a desire for the joy that comes from simplicity.

So what do we do?

We accept that the tension will always be there.  We pay attention.  We practice gratitude.  We notice what brings us joy and what sucks the joy right out of us.  Remembering that joy isn’t the same as “happy” or “comfortable”, because so much in life that brings true joy, looks like hard work, generosity, and sacrifice.  Then we simplify, at our own pace, by eliminating the true joy stealers.

When we do, we start to feel lighter.  

It’s not about getting it right or wrong.  We’re all, always going to wrestle with it on the daily, because we are all wired differently and simplicity looks different on everyone.  It’s about baby steps and practice.  It’s about stumbling and trying again.

It’s about insisting on awakening more joy. 

It starts with setting the intention in your heart to choose simple in the small things.

It starts in your heart, in this moment.  

to more love,

Crystal

If you’re local, we’d love for you to join us tomorrow night for a night of laughter, icing and honest talks about the role of simplicity in awaking joy.

If not, here’s the clip of our hilarious cookie demo if you’d like to learn more, or at least get a good laugh.

 

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