Weekly newspaper of Three Rivers, California, and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Parks

LIFE WITHOUT: Introduction

By SARAH ELLIOTT

 

SEPTEMBER 13, 2013— Rolling around this month is yet another birthday for me. That is always cause for reflection and review of where I am in my life.

I like to have some arduous physical feat on the calendar, which usually consists of something high up on a Sierra mountain. Nothing on this front planned yet, but know you’ll be reading about it when it happens.

However, I have given myself a new challenge, one that will last for a year, at least. It begins this month and has the goal of simplifying my life while adding to its quality.

If we take the time to soul-search, most would realize that today we are beings of excess:  too much stuff, too much food,  too much technology, too much driving, too much inactivity, too much convenience.

For the next 12 months, I’ll be conducting a personal experiment that I am calling Life Without. It will be my way of finding out what’s truly necessary. I will be testing the boundaries of my wants and needs.

Life Without is based on the premise that I will go an entire month without one thing I do regularly. Everything I give up will be to the benefit of my overall health and longevity and/or for the betterment of the planet.

I’ll give up something for a month, then evaluate whether it is something I enjoyed giving up and whether it’s worth, or even possible, leaving out of my life permanently.

Some of these months without will be significant sacrifices. Others will be difficult but necessary. And some are habits I’ve already been working toward eliminating and will actually provide me with more joy, better health, or more free time.

Feedback about this project is welcomed. Better yet, join me on this quest. I hope this series will inspire you to subtract something from your life that will, in exchange, add more happiness and satisfaction.

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