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7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less

The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity.
-Walt Whitman (1819-1892) American poet.

Simple life is a pathway to happiness. It’s as simple as a rainbow of seven colors. In the modern world full of gizmos, simplicity is an extinct virtue.

Simplicity is a subtle, profound way of life leading to the nurturing of your inner happiness. That makes me believe that sources of external happiness veil our capacity to nurture inner happiness.

Simplicity is a way to  manage our time to deposit more inner pleasure in our Bank of Life.

Habits and addictions are two sources of external happiness that keep our focus on excess leading to more habits and addictions. As I grow older, I’m mindful of my life; I am dwelling deep into time; I am trading for the pleasure of mine that takes away eternal, inner pleasure of time with my wife, my children, my spiritual being and the community that I live in.

Excess in eating, spending, working, ego, thinking, pleasures and — of course — doing everything to please others is a sure way to wreck your life speeding on the highway of more stuff for happiness; I am not against materialism, I am against excess that leads to the wreckage.

Rainbow reminds me of 7 habits to set limits, and to create inner awareness to live happy, content life with less.

Healthy eating:

Overeating has many dreary consequences including high fat, high sugar food, sedatory life and emotional clutter leading to depression. With my new-found mantra, I’ve been devoting my focus on the diet. My mantra for the day becomes, “Better and balanced diet to invest time to deposit more inner pleasure in Bank of my Life.” This allows me to be mindful about what I eat. Being a vegetarian, it allows me to focus my attention to eat vegan food rich in fiber and protein. I feel excess in energy — and certainly relaxed — as a result.

Less spending:

If you pay attention to your closet, you can see excess manifested through your spending habit. We’ve all had time in our life when we refused and abhor to open that bill, charged every credit card in our wallet to the limit to buy things that we wanted. I’ve lived in the third world country, and I know that it takes lot less to deposit more inner happiness in my Bank of Life. If I am mindful for a day to buy only what I need and not what I want, I’m feeling calmness and peace that comes from within.

Less working:

I’ve always struggled with this habit. It’s manifested my life to a degree that I’ve become addicted to setting goals and seeking external pleasure by setting higher goals to spend more time working for those goals. I’m mindful for a day to turn off the laptop and head back home no matter what happens. I’ve now realized that life moves on. It has allowed me to develop inner consciousness about the goals and their relevance to my new mantra of life.

Less Ego:

An ego is an excess form of time spent on self-centric thoughts. I’m not against having an ego. Without an ego, we can not instill burning desire to achieve what we conceive. It’s excess that takes time away from my purpose to invest time for the inner happiness. With excess in ego comes the root of an evil; It kills the veins of morality leading to horrible act of self-indulgence. If I’m mindful about keeping my ego in the closet when I leave home, I’m nurturing the mind of magnanimity.

Less Obsessive thinking:

We’ve all been victim of this viral state of mind.  We choose our thoughts and focus our attention to those thoughts. It’s that very decision we make to choose and obsess with thoughts of events that went wrong on the day, lack of forgiveness for the mistakes we’ve made on the day that leads us to misery and despair. With new mantra, I’m mindful about the thoughts I choose and thoughts I harbor. By allowing mind to relax with yoga and meditation, I’ve learned to focus on thoughts of content and not on the contempt.

Less Pleasures:

External pleasures always imbibe our inner pleasure. I do not drink or smoke, but I’ve habit of drinking a can of diet coke a day. I’m more mindful on a day to avoid these chemically altered drinks to invest my time to deposit more inner pleasures in my Life Bank. I’m feeling more energy and higher state of awakening due to seeking pleasure from within.

People Pleasing:

Keeping up with Joneses is the norm in the modern day society. It’s both sad and disdainful to live life just to seek approval of others. If I know myself well and accept myself deeply, I don’t need approval of others. People pleasing is a form of external happiness that’s as fake as a mirage. Pleasing my inner self allows me to invest time to deposit eternal happiness in my Bank of Life. It also allows me to eliminate the emotional clutter I’ve deposited in the form of rejection by others who indeed have no interest in investing time to deposit more inner happiness in my life. I’m mindful for a day to do what pleases my inner self and care less for what others opined about my decision to do so.

I’m enjoying the rainbow of seven colors leading happy life with less.

Life is really simple, but men insist on making it complicated.
-Confucius (BC 551-BC 479) Chinese philosopher.

Photo by Adam Burton

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Comments (33)

Less working is my favorite. I am not a big fan of working hard yet i am a huge fan of working smart. Results should speak louder than how much you invested to achieve this. I still see folks get rewarded for heroic efforts and those who plan and execute silently to the plan left overshadowed. That’s odd to me but it does not make feel i need to throw more hours into work anyway. I hit my numbers and some more investing into it 40 hours a week, that’s achievement for me.

Alik, Working smart is the key. I agree with you that the touchstone for productive work ought not be number of hours, but rather be the end result and quality of work.

wow, Shilpan….

another brilliant and thought provoking post.

OK, Let’s see now…

Healthy eating: This is my biggest challenge and the focus of my current efforts. tough road for me. I’m trying to be more mindful of my food choices and take a moment to ask with each, is this taking me closer or further from my goal.

Spending has never been an issue for me. I wish food was as easy.

Balance in work as always been a challenge and I tend to burn out as described here:
but I have more balance in my work life now than ever before. but then I’m retired. :)

I’m egoistic enough to believe I have my ego in check. :)

Obsessive thinking is an area in which I’m pleased with my progress.

I’m also getting better at taking my pleasures in moderation.

Never much cared about the Joneses.

Overall, you pass these tests with flying colors my friend. You’ve indeed earned rainbow of simplicity award. :)

thank you, sir.

Healthy eating is the one I’d most like to master before I die. Or it kills me.

Jim, thank you for adding value to this conversation.

Less Ego and less pleasure is a great way to increase happiness. Simple life promotes happiness. Thanks for sharing :)

Beautifully written and thought-provoking post, Shilpan. Personally, I can vouch for the ideas that you’ve stated in relation to improving these areas of life. My biggest challenge is putting more focus into healthy eating habits. While I do exercise on a regular basis, I’m not very good with maintaining regular fiber and protein intake. I consume fruits and vegetables, but need to consume more. You’ve inspired me, and I appreciate it from the bottom of my heart.

Anthony, thank you! I also have struggled with some of these habits; I am hoping that by revisiting this post regularly, I can instill commitment subconsciously.

I’m glad I read this post first thing in the morning! Very inspiring Shilpan!

MC, thank you for the kind words.

These are some great points, as always, Shilpan! I love reading your work as our viewpoints are always right in line!

I will say that I’ve learned that simplicity is the greatest thing ever. I miss it greatly and it always saddens me to see how complicated we’re made our lives these days.

There is nothing better for me to have the TV turned off and talk to my wife (without anything else on my mind), or to sit on my bench on my back-patio and read a book.

I definitely have focused on eating and living healthier, we don’t spend a lot, and I’m not much into ego or people-pleasing.

Undoubtedly my problem comes with working too much. I love that I started the blog, but with my work and that combined it has really made things difficult. I’m constantly seeking balance and I do believe it will come. I’m not sure if I just use this as an excuse or if it a true reason: but I work as much as I do now so that I do not have to do so later.

Hopefully that will come to fruition…

Jason, I admire you for the kind of life you live. You’ve set a great example for me and others by living way within means. As that credit card ad says, “Best things in life are free.” I believe that inner pleasure comes from enjoying simple pleasures like reading book or sharing laughter with loved ones.

I never really understood why people insist on people pleasing. It gets you no where and you have nothing but stress! You can’t please everyone, so you truly need to focus on what makes you happy.

I’m introvert by nature. So, I never understood meaning of people pleasing. And, I never felt that it can add anymore inner happiness. So, why bother?

I am not a people pleaser in a material sense, I am a people pleaser when it comes to someone asking me to do something for them. I almost never say no. I hate letting people down. I’ve got to work on this.

Katie, I love it. You please people to nurture your inner happiness by doing act of kindness. I consider selfless act as the prime ingredient of the lasting happiness.

i love this post.. and the path your describe is something that i am striving for in my life…

less working and less ego.. i am working on these at the moment

Jefferson, I think you already are living life of simplicity. :)

I agree that if you are working to simplify your life you are going to be happy :)

Thanks Karunesh.

I suffered from many of these. Thankfully I finally have things under control. Do you practice meditation? Very enlightening post. Thank you!

Buck, I do meditate daily. It really helps me get connected with my inner self.

[…] post 7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less is a great reminder of how to live a simpler, healthier and happier […]

[…] 7 habits for a happy life from Street Smart Finance.  Is he right? […]

[…] 7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less […]

The greatest day in my life was when I realized that all the materialistic crap that everyone else wanted was meaningless and I didn’t actually want any of it. Suddenly I had more money then I knew what to do with and I didn’t feel like I was missing out on anything.

That’s brilliant thinking Mike.

[…] Here’s the rundown on a 529 College Savings Plan.Shilpan from Street Smart Finance presents 7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less. Simple life is a pathway to happiness. It’s as simple as a rainbow of seven colors. In the […]

[…] 7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less The art of art, the glory of expression and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity. -Walt Whitman (1819-1892) American poet. Simple life is a pathway to happiness. It’s as simple as a rainbow of seven colors. In the modern world full of gizmos,… Read more […]

Shilpan: I like the seven habits and I fully agree. I can read a hundred blog post, write a hundred articles or make a hundred comments, but that is not work to me. To me, it is fun and what I want to spend my time doing. I define working as difficult tasks you don’t like doing, but that you attempt to complete.
Anyways, I do not work too much so I have a lot of fun, not to mention peace.

Best wishes,
William Veasley

[…] Street $mart Finance wrote 7 Habits to Live Happy Life with Less […]