So. Many. Choices.
As I make my way down the aisle of the grocery store, I my brain begins to feel sensory overload. The boxes lining the shelves create a multi-colored tapestry of product options.
The abundance ought to create a feeling of gratefulness. The variety of packages testify to the number of individuals whose livelihood is connected to them. Furthermore, I can choose cereal according to my exact expectations: taste, texture, color, sweetness, ingredients.
But instead, I find my mind paralyzed by the varying fonts competing for my attention. How do I make a decision?
I am reminded of my time in Sweden. As a college exchange student, I observed as well as breathed in the cultural differences. Simplicity dots the landscape. Small stores may limit choices but not the quality of life. Each trip is infused with intention. Intention gives birth to creativity: How can you make use of what you have? And Community: with whom can you share your resources?
Life is simplified.
Recent research suggests that choice overload can contribute to anxiety. In fact, many children’s discipline issues may be related to our desire to be surrounded by abundance. Parents are urged to minimize activity and toy choices for their children. “Too much” can be “too much.”
But I don’t think it’s only kids that could use a new approach.
Think about how long it takes to decide on a restaurant with a group of people or make a choice from an overflowing menu?
Perhaps, we challenge ourselves to identify what staples are necessary from the grocery store this week and create meals only from them.
Perhaps, we challenge ourselves to eat from a limited amount of restaurants this month and choose to eat something new from them.
What might we learn about finding abundance in simplicity?
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