What Do I Really Need? - Flashback From December 2015

**Sorting through my writing, I found this unpublished entry that I wrote in December 2015. Little did I know at the time that 6 months later, I would be letting go of my apartment and my car, putting everything in storage and embarking on a journey in a van! I'm sharing it unedited.**

December 9th, 2015:

Today, on my plane ride, I was reflecting on my desire of a simpler, more authentic life. This desire has grown stronger and stronger, as my dedication to my art has grown stronger and stronger. I realized that the more focused I am on my passion, the more I experience the joy and fulfillment of being in alignment with my purpose, the clearer I get about what in my life is serving me and my purpose…or not. It has become achingly obvious, and often painful to recognize. It’s never easy to let go of the things we put so much hopes and expectations in, thinking they would make us happy. 

So many times I confused real joy with temporary pleasure, I confused being content with being comfortable, I confused being kind with being nice. I had no idea what I wanted, so I took everything that remotely looked like something someone that is happy would have. 

It was an astoundingly exhausting quest to be able to score a husband, a Master’s degree, a respectable job, a bunch of friends spanning on 3 continents and 7 countries, a car, a cat, an apartment…all before turning 30 (most of those I lost/left/sold shortly thereafter anyways). Accumulating a ridiculous amount of clothing I never wear, utensils I don’t use, things that just collect dusts, commitments I don’t want to keep, so-called friendships neither person involved has time for, time and money sucking habits that do little more than distract or entertain me for a minute. I’ll stop there because I’m starting to choke.

I have been meaning to read the Art of Tidying Up for months, and to be honest the only thing I know about it is that it talks about one key principle: only keep things that bring us JOY. 

I have been procrastinating on considering this idea until I read the book, and procrastinating on buying the book…Probably because I was too busy pouring time and money into the things that don’t bring me joy!

But today, as I was sitting i the plane with no internet, no movie, no book (actually I have one but I don’t like it), it came back. 

Apparently, researchers have discovered that we only have a finite amount of decision-making energy for each day. That means that there is only so many good decisions we can make in a day, and decision-making includes resisting temptation. So if you use it all before let’s say going to work…you’re out of luck (I won’t even get to evening dates). Stay with me there, i swear it all ties up. 

This research is capital because it proves that small changes really are the key to a better life. It can be as simple as not having a bunch of candies in the house, or not being friends with your ex on Facebook, or whatever takes you extra willpower every day to resist temptation. Even just giving away the clothes I never wear so I save extra decision-making energy every morning.  

So getting rid of the things that don’t bring us joy really makes room for more good things in our life, on more than one level.