The Greatest Currency is TIME

In my quest for a less cluttered life and embracing minimalism; the reason for the pursuance of less is to free up the precious commodity which none of us seem to have enough of is “time”.

The more busy I become with work, navigating traffic during rush hour, checking into social media outlets, I have noticed I am in a constant battle against time. I am perpetually trying to find more time, or beat time so I can arrive on time and have more down time. I work in the position I do so I can enjoy my time, by buying what I need or want, and use those items to make my time pleasant.

Every time I purchase something, I think how many hours of work did this take from me? As essentially the possessions we have can be broken into hours and minutes. When you think about spending money as spending time, depending on what you value more could determine whether or not you indulge.

We work so we can enjoy our time while we are alive. However, how many of us our killing ourselves with work and not taking the time to take care of ourselves? How many of us sleep beside our phones turned on at night so we don’t miss an important text or call in the middle of the night. Do we own time or does time own us?

Better yet, I think we need to ask ourselves why we do what we do & what is the end result? Are we meeting this end result? Is what we make worth our time or is it maybe time to find work which provides more balance in life? Is earning six figures a necessary evil to maintain a certain lifestyle at the expense of your health?

When sick with something terminal if not in excruciating pain, what is the one thing people say they wish they had more of?

It is time. Not money, not a new car, not a new face, but time, and why time? So, they can spend more time with their loved ones.

If you ask me, all of our efforts to save time with technology has done the complete opposite. We have less time, less work life balance and heaps of possessions we have no “time” to actually enjoy. We live in some very shallow times where we have been fooled to believe that working towards a life of opulence is the way to go.

Opulence doesn’t come for free. Anyone I know who has a better than average take home salary, they work hard for their money. Some work so hard they do let their health slip; self care is not a priority and when you don’t take care of yourself, you are putting yourself at risk of exhaustion, health issues and you will become disenchanted and bitter.

I leave you with this question… If health is wealth, just how wealthy are you?

Peace & Love – Rachel x

Cell Phone Zombies are Real!  

They walk among us, slowly & sloppily with their heads hanging low avoiding eye contact.  We are living amongst cyborg zombies who have infested our streets and sidewalks without mercy, clumsily bumping into sign posts, cars and other zombies.


Then there are individuals like myself who enjoy walking for the sake of walking & looking at the scenery.  However,  I am often in a hurry to go from point a to point b, and I am focused when I am either driving or walking and for good reason, as it would seem the majority of us are distracted.
 

 

Elon Musk made a statement during an interview that we have all become part cyborg as the cell phone has become an extension of our bodies, and it is true. 


 We are all utilizing artificial intelligence on a daily basis and feeding the beast every time we “google” a topic. Despite more information than ever being fathomable in its availability; it is filling our already busy brains at a rapid rate.  We are not machines, we are human. Yet somehow, I believe many feel they have evolved into a hybrid form of human with knowledge at their fingertips waiting to be explored. 


 Take a look around you the next time you are out walking down a busy sidewalk while you dodge the many slow walking cell phone zombies who believe they can text and walk at the same time while not paying attention to their surroundings. More often than not today I find myself dodging walkers who are coming towards me and have absolutely no idea I am coming towards them. Thank God one of us is paying attention. 

 

I don’t care how well skilled you are at texting and two thumbing it; if you’re focused on texting and communicating a message – you are not focused on the other task at hand. 


 Try walking amongst a whole pod of cyborg texting zombies coming at you from every which way direction, it is like a video game, where it would appear the goal of the game is to make it to your destination without having someone bump into you. 

 

In addition to texting and walking, there is talking and walking, more often than not with headphones plugged in which is must better than the texting walker. I think back to less than a decade ago and people who would be walking and talking without a phone up to their ear would be considered mentally unstable, but now you can hear one side of a conversation with information I would rather not know.  


These cyborg cell phone zombies are oblivious of their surroundings and carry on spewing profanities and loud guffaws of laughter, or the uncomfortable awkward lover’s spats when one is spazzing out on their special person who thank goodness cannot be seen, yet, my audio space is invaded by these highly personal conversations.


There used to be a stigma attached to loud talkers on their cell phones, but now it seems to be anything goes, and as for discretionary conversations, forget it… Perhaps, we can blame reality TV for that one! 

 

A coupled of weeks ago I was driving on the highway going ten KMs above the speed limit myself, and the highway divided allowing for a passing lane, I went to the right, but a guy went zipping by me with his cell phone in the centre of his steering wheel texting away as he passed me in the left lane.  I was going around 120 KM (110 zone) so he must have been going 140 or more as he passed me quickly, it wasn’t a gradual pass and all I could think was, what if I wasn’t paying attention, what if I pulled out in front of him, would he have been able to react as quickly as someone who wasn’t on their phone texting?  I don’t think so. 

 

We have heard of the numerous car accidents because of driving and texting, yet it still continues to happen daily and frequently. As a pedestrian I also have to watch out for texting drivers at stop signs when crossing a street and basically, I feel as though I have to be on my game 110% as we are living in a sea of cyborg cell phone zombies. It is exhausting, and after working on a computer all day at my work place, the last thing I want to do is engage in social media or text conversations. 

I don’t feel safe driving anymore.  I feel as though I cannot rely on anyone to be paying attention to the road and I need to be on high alert.  Come on Elon Musk get the self driving cars out stat!  Self driving cars are supposed to 100-200% safer, and with all those cell phone zombies behind the wheel possibly 500% safer. 


Thanks for indulging in my vent on cell phones. 

 And remember….


And don’t become…


Peace & Love – Rachel  

 

I Know the Secret to Happiness…

I know the secret to happiness and it is easy; happiness is something every human being can attain.  I can sum it up in one simple word “gratitude”.  Folk like Oprah have been preaching about an attitude of gratitude for well over a decade, but it is 100% the truth and logical when you think about it. 


My lowest moments of life have been when I  focused on what I don’t have and I have completely ignored the bountiful blessings which surround me.  Often superficial and unimportant desires such as not being able to go on a fancy trip, not being able to afford a car I want, losing out on a career opportunity to someone else and then comparing myself to others.  Thoughts like I am too slow, I am not smart enough, I feel stuck, I should be making more money, I should be in better shape, I should be more assertive, I should be more confident or the pity party attitude of “why not me?”.  Thinking I am good enough, I am smart enough, I am worthy enough, I work hard enough; why not me?  Thinking “why not me” is better than thinking “I am a loser”, but it can still keep you stuck in the “I should” have more.  


I used to grumble to my Dad about my lacking in life because my Dad always had this amazing ability to remain positive in the adversity of my Debbie Downer attitude. He would say, “If your Grandmother were alive today she would say you deserve a good swift kick in the rear end!”.  He would then go onto say how lucky I was and how much I had accomplished in life and how so many people would give anything to have the life I have.  He would go through the list of positive things currently in my life and from my past; he would talk about the water view I had from my then small apartment, the countries I had traveled to, the education I had, the pets in my life, the friends I have, how my parents love me, my brothers love me and he would go on and on until I knew I had no reason to be so upset with my life and what was missing from it.  


We can make ourselves miserable when we focus on what is wrong and what we don’t have, but when you start to count your blessings no matter how small, you start to feel humbled and you begin to appreciate the abundance in your life even if it doesn’t portray societal standards of success or happiness.  


I started a self help book by Gabrielle Bernstein, May Cause Miracles, and each day there are exercises to complete, one day I had to make a list of ten things I was grateful for (think it was ten) and I did not have a great day earlier, but by making the list of ten whatevers I was grateful for, it flipped my mood around.


When you focus on being grateful for what you do have, it is impossible to remain down trodden.  Anyone can do this and I understand some of us do have exceptionally hard lives, but one can still look at what they do have.  


The choice belongs to us.  We can choose to focus on what is wrong or what we don’t have and want or we can be grateful for what we do have and what is right in our lives.  


Oprah said if we write down three things we are grateful for daily, our lives would change for the better aka feeling more at peace and happy.


It is easy to do!  I dare you to try making a list of ten things you are grateful for today and watch your mood transform.  

Here is my list: 

  1. I am grateful for this warm sunny September Sunday
  2. I am grateful for the cool breeze coming off the Atlantic Ocean
  3. I am grateful I don’t have to work on weekends
  4. I am grateful I was able to Skype with my brother in Korea this morning
  5. I am grateful for the comfortable bed I sleep in every night 
  6. I am grateful for the chicken sandwich Brian picked up for me at lunch today
  7. I am grateful for my good health 
  8. I am grateful for the walk I will be going on this afternoon 
  9. I am grateful for having cold water to drink
  10. I am grateful for the hot shower this morning 

Your list doesn’t have to be exceptional and most of what I listed are things which are free to everyone to enjoy.  


I hope this blog helped someone realize there is much to be grateful for and much reason to be alive. 

Gratitude equals happiness 

 Peace & love – Rachel 

Day 22 – Summer 2018 Mins Game 

It is starting to become more challenging.  I did another cull of my bookshelf and I may have to get creative for the next eighty remaining days.  

Today’s purge included the following:


1-10 Magnets

11-14 Books 

15-16 Magnets

17 A stale pack of Halls

18-19 Salad toppings

20 Expired lemon juice

21-22 Old Batteries 

Peace & Love – Rachel 

Day 21 – Summer 2018 Mins Game 

Today’s purge is a biggie!  I culled the closet to see what I could find & I found a lot.  I probably could have selected a few more items and I may before the end of this minimalism challenge, but I still find myself attached to some things, which I want to give another chance.

Do you ever find yourself holding a piece of clothing saying “I haven’t worn you in well over a year, BUT I do plan to wear you again”.  That was me tonight. 


You will find in the above picture the following items:

1-7 T-shirts

8-9 Hats

10-13 Shoes

14 Garment bag

15 Pillow Case

16-19 Sweaters

20 A running jacket 

21 A fleece 

It is all going to charity and I was able to set aside a special bag containing the nicest items of this purge to give to a friend’s friend who struggles financially.  

I have now reached a total of 231 items purged from my space.  It feels good to get rid of stuff.  

Peace & Love – Rachel 

Day 20 – Summer 2018 Mins Game 

Today is day 20 of the #minsgame; it is getting harder, but not so hard that I am coming up empty.  

Today’s purge involved the bathroom cupboards and I came up with the following: 


1-10 A variety of skin products to be tossed 

11-12 Choker necklaces

13 Old crusty contact lens container 

14-16 Hair clips

17 Travel toothpaste in packaging 

18 EOS hand cream in packaging 

19 Nail brush never used in packaging 

20 Bracelet 

All of the products in original packaging will be going to charity, including accessories. 

Peace & Love – Rachel

Day 19 – Summer 2018 Mins Game 

I almost didn’t post this today as I am dead beat from the heat wave which has infected Nova Scotia.  The humidity is sucking the life force out of me, and thank God for air conditioning which I have at home, sadly not in the archaic building I work in.  

Today’s purge is another mish mash of pure randomness. 


1-9 Batteries to recycle 

10-12 Ketchup packs (I only like ketchup on my KD) 

13-16 Mugs

17 Dish towel

18 Instruction manual on an aromatherapy mister

19 La pièce de résistance – my Britney Spears magnet


Yep, that is my Britney, but I am moving into a place with a stainless steel fridge and having magnets all over stuff does not jive with my minimalism jam.  I plan to donate Britney for auction to raise money for kitty rescues.  I would totally bid on her.  

She will forever live in my iPod and in my memories…

Peace & Love – Rachel