Living an Intentional Life

Photography: Liana Mikah

By Megan Stonelake

It’s 8.30pm on a Tuesday evening. I’m snuggled up in bed with a snack, winding down from a busy day. My five-year-old wanders in and crawls into bed next to me. He takes a look at the TV and shakes his head. “Are you watching one of your tiny house shows again?”

I nod sheepishly. It’s become somewhat of a joke in my family. I don’t watch much TV, but if I do it’s likely one of the five shows about tiny homes that I’ve been known to cycle through. I admit I have a bit of an obsession.

I have no intention of moving my family to a tiny home, nor do I wish to romanticize life in 200 square feet. Yet something about the simplicity of a tiny house appeals to me.

Similarly, I’ve been known to devour books about minimalism, all while in view of my three towering bookshelves. The irony of this is not lost on me.

My fascination with simplicity, minimalism, and tiny living might not be indicative of an impending lifestyle change, a fact that reassures my husband greatly. And yet, a simpler, slower lifestyle is one that has always felt right to me. When I read about slowing down and simplifying, something at my core is comforted.

Life is slow, quiet, and uncomplicated. There’s no place I need to be and unanswered emails are the furthest thing from my mind. Time unfolds languidly, like a lazy river. I see pure peace and contentment.

When I picture my version of simplicity, I see a modest farmhouse and plenty of wide-open space. There are probably some chickens out back and a horse in the field. I’m sitting on my front porch drinking a glass of iced tea without a care in the world. Life is slow, quiet, and uncomplicated. There’s no place I need to be and unanswered emails are the furthest thing from my mind. Time unfolds languidly, like a lazy river. I see pure peace and contentment.

In essence my longing is to live intentionally. I may never have the simple life in the country I yearn for. More importantly, a geographical change would mean little if I continue to live life at a harried pace. I can just as easily overbook myself in a farmhouse as I can in the suburbs. No, I don’t need a smaller home or fewer books in order to live simply. To live more simply, I need only to live more simply. I can do that just as easily where I am now, perhaps more so since I’m already here. Rather than waiting for my country house to slow down, I can instead focus on the control I have over my life here. Today.

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