Updated: Jun 1, 2019
The following is a review for a book that I HIGHLY recommend!
I had the opportunity to read and review the book The Year of Simple Living: 12 Months to a Simplified Life by Steph Parrell. This book breaks down the various ways you can simplify your life, whether it be decluttering your closet and throwing out useless things under your bathroom sink, or clearing your mind of unnecessary clutter that gets in the way of your joy. This book take a look at living a simpler, happier life from a physical, mental, emotional, AND spiritual level (which you know we're all about here!) and breaks it down into a manageable timeline.
Each chapter is "one month", and each month you are challenged to declutter a specific aspect of your life. For example, Chapter One you work on simplifying your home while chapter 7 simplifies your budget and teaches you to save money, and chapter 10 simplifies your relationships with others and yourself. You can (obviously) make this journey quicker than a year if you choose to, but I like the year timeline. It doesn't rush the process, but rather allows a gentle unfolding without getting overwhelmed. I feel society pushes impatience, always trying to make things happen quicker and quicker. Quicker isn't always better though, and in life the things that matter should be enjoyed and appreciated. Slowing down and being mindful of your journey ensures a greater appreciation and can be life changing rather than just a "quick phase".
And that's what Steph wants to promote: living mindfully. This isn't a book about minimalism, because minimalism is mostly the physical aspect of life and less excess. The author wants to promote a more mindful way of living that embodies all aspects of life. Less is often more. When you have less of the things that cloud your mind, stress you out, tire your soul, take up space...you then have more room for the things that matter. You find more passion in your life. More time.
I took this book as a challenge and set goals for myself for each chapter. I did everything in less than the year it gives (because I'm the type to rush things and I'm really working on that!) and plan on going back and re-doing everything, this time allowing myself the full year to truly remove the excess and embody the beautiful, healing messages of this book. Even though I didn't allow the full year this time around, I have noticed a huge shift within myself.
For one, I cleared out more than half of all the excessive nonsense in my house that I was holding onto "just in case".
For two, I was forced to check myself. I promote mindfulness A LOT, but realized with this book that I wasn't practicing what I was preaching (not good). I honestly love being called out and forced to check myself, some of my best growth has come that way. And this book definitely did that for me in the short time I read it, and re-read it again (it's THAT good!)
Plus the fact that each chapter acts as a challenge makes it fun! Set goals for yourself for each chapter, make a vision board, get creative! Whatever way works best for you to process (and keep) the info and new habits: do it! Maybe get some friends and loved ones on board, it helps to have support and it's fun to see each other learn and grow along the way!
Either way, this book has been such a treasure and I'm so glad that it was sent my way. A lot of thought and love went into creating it and it truly shows. Steph has managed to take what is seemingly difficult to do and made it simple enough that anyone can (and should) do it.
Get your copy of The Year of Simple Living: 12 Months to a Simplified Life HERE.
Embark on a journey that is guaranteed to teach you more than you ever thought possible about yourself and life in general, simply and mindfully.
And don't forget to share your journey! Share your challenges, your progress, your lessons, etc on social media! You just might inspire others to live a more mindful life, and what's more beautiful than promoting and inspiring positive growth?! Use #RYV when sharing so we can see and share your progress as well!