“FREE123: Freedom In Less” is my personal account of pursuing financial freedom by pursuing less: Less stuff, less complexity and less spending. The purpose is not deprivation, but to achieve more financial goals while experiencing contentment and purpose. Take a look:
Less Is More – The Beginning
This series got started one day when I was daydreaming one day about my happy place and how I feel when I am there. For me that place is Kauai Hawaii, on a beach, with a 84 degree sunny day (every day seems 84 degrees and sunny to me there). When I am there, just experiencing the beauty, I am content, happy, joyful and grateful. To say the least, when I am there, I want nothing else. It is simple and I am content. Then I got to thinking: Why can’t I experience that simplicity and contentment more often? Like at home? In my everyday life? The answer is I can. And a simple contented life would greatly enhance my goal of financial freedom.
The Goal: Purposeful Simplification
For this season in life, I am going to purposefully simplify my life by finding freedom in less. Less stuff, less complexity and less spending as a means to reaching my financial freedom goals and find more contentment and purpose. The goal is to live more purposefully, a frugal budget with clear goals and a renewed focus on reducing consumption to achieve more contentment and true freedom.
Spring Break Update
This month my wife and I took a vacation with a simple focus. Enjoy the natural beauty of the island (St. Croix) and immerse ourselves in the people, food and authentic culture with little to no tourist activity. In other words, live in the moment like the native islanders do, spending lots of time enjoying the simple pleasures. We did this for three reasons: First, we needed to slow down and recharge. Second, this is probably the only time we will ever visit this island so we wanted an authentic experience. Third, and most of all, we wanted to simplify the vacation to relax and enjoy simple things like laughing, resting and eating together. We had a blast! Take a look at some of the “Less Is More” decisions we made:
- We rented a small little cottage (AirBnB) owned by a local artist to give us a feel of what is was like to live like the locals. No air conditioning, pool or cable TV. Instead we enjoyed the simple sounds of the island through our open windows that allowed the trade winds to blow through the cottage. It was amazing. So simple and enjoyable.
- We rented a car and made it a point each day to go to the local beaches, food stands and watering holes and we met so many interesting and enjoyable people who ended up sharing the week with us. There is nothing like having locals take you to the best (secret) places. And we made fast friends.
- We kept it real simple. No schedules, no large groups, no long lines. We hiked, swam, walked beaches, searched for sea glass and snorkeled. Easy, fun and very inexpensive. Any we also got a little exercise!
- We depended upon, and benefited from only using recommendations from locals. As a result, every experience was amazing and extremely inexpensive, like free!
FREE123: Freedom In Less Summary
This month we experienced a “Less Is More” vacation in St. Croix. We decided to simplify and live in the moment on this vacation in order to slow down and spend less. Really, to vacation in a less-is-more style by doing/spending less and enjoying time together more. It was great! The things we did do were memorable and really felt special. The extra time we just hung out together was awesome and restful. And the laughs were endless. By limiting events/activities and excessive vacation spending, we didn’t break the bank and yet enjoyed the most important things: time with friends and shared experiences.