Okay, I have a confession to make.
I’ve spent a good portion of my life trying to get MORE. An example of this is a little quirk I have whenever I find a “bargain.” When something is on sale, I’m usually not satisfied to get just one, I think I need several. This probably explains the ten cans of tuna in my pantry.
On the surface, this seems like a smart idea because you save money in the long run. But is it really?
I can’t tell you the number of times I decided later that I really didn’t like that kind of tuna after all. Likewise the six shirts that actually didn’t fit me as well as I originally thought. Oops!
I don’t think it’s just me. C’mon, tell me it’s not! It seems a normal part of human nature to think that MORE is better.
Now I’m not saying that MORE is always bad. I truly love getting a deal or a bargain. But let’s face it, the power of less is a popular chant for a reason.
All of my thinking about MORE reminded me of times when MORE is really less. We could probably call these examples of the dark side of MORE:
- Thinking MORE than listening. We’ve all done this. We’re so busy formulating our own story or thinking about what we’re going to say next rather than really hearing what someone else is saying.
- Talking MORE than doing. Does this sound familiar? “I was going to . . .” or, “Someday I will . . .” but you never really get around to actually doing anything.
- Complaining MORE than accepting. Life isn’t smooth sailing. Why do we continually lament the fact that life isn’t fair? According to whom? We contribute to our own suffering every time we wallow in self pity.
- Working MORE than rejuvenating. Sometimes it’s hard to pull ourselves away from work. Even if we’re doing work we love, too much of it can eventually lead to burnout.
- Accumulating MORE than giving. When is enough really enough? Next time you tell yourself that you need something, question whether you really do. Maybe you would actually be happier by giving something away.
- Worrying MORE than letting things go. Those negative stories we keep playing in our minds only lead to more wrinkles. Do we ever create a more positive outcome by fretting and ruminating about it first?
- Criticizing MORE than praising. When was the last time we took the time to encourage someone by saying how much we like the job they’re doing? Sometimes we just don’t realize the critical tone in our own voice.
- Resenting MORE than forgiving. Holding a grudge is like holding yourself hostage. Do we really believe we gain anything by filling ourselves with blame and hurtfulness?
- Judging MORE than loving. Do we feel bigger, stronger or more important when we belittle someone else? And the one we tend to be most harsh with is . . . ourselves!
- Existing MORE than living. Are we just going through the motions, doing what we have to do to get by? What would happen if we just let go of our fears and live with exhilaration?
I guess we could all benefit from regularly examining our MOREs. Living with An Island Perspective includes staying centered and balanced. The people of Alumanaya seem to do this with ease.
Let’s practice what the islanders do:
- Keeping ourselves in balance.
- Putting life in perspective.
- Making what’s important, important.
- Minimizing or even eliminating what’s not important.
My mantra this year is: Keep it simple. To me, this is the first step to a more balanced life. When I feel myself getting all frenzied and frazzled (which admittedly happens more than I’d like!), I’m going to repeat this mantra to myself. Usually when I get this way, it’s because I’m out of balance in some way. Either MORE or less of something is working against me.
In the end, it’s not so much about MORE being less or less being MORE. Let’s make MORE about being healthier, happier and on purpose with what really matters.
Just keep it simple.
What are some of the MOREs that throw you out of balance?