The Joy of Simple
The holidays are coming up and I’m totally stoked. Mr. Fluvial and I are taking our first real vacation just two of us (can we call it a honeymoon even though we were married over 2 years ago?) and, of course, there’s all the yummy smells and food and an opportunity to strengthen relationships. It really is the most wonderful time of the year.
I’m lucky to have been part of an intentional community that places much emphasis on connection, community, expressing love, and emotional/spiritual fulfillment over material possessions (mostly…we’ll just ignore the sheer enormity of Burning Man expenses :)). I met these folks when I was 18 so, really, I grew up with them always there to guide me along a more interesting path. Thanks to them, I’ve had the courage to do things that I may have never considered otherwise. (Burning Man, tango, different relationship models, etc.) I’ve also been exposed to an INSANE amount of smarts…we’ve always been early adopters of new technologies and, in many cases, were involved the very creation of that technology! We’re basically awesome. But we’re also a HUGE community. It’s hard to keep connection with all the people we’d like to and, many times, our outward expressions of love are also..HUGE and overly inclusive. And documented. All over the internet. And sometimes, just sometimes, we alienate people and make them feel less important. Which damages the very community we intend to support.
Where am I going with this?
My personal challenge this holiday season is to revel in the joy of simple. I hope to reach out 1:1 or in small groups (less than 6 people) and spend time with the people I love. I want to reach out and tell them I care about them. I promise not to post messages on FB tagging people who are with me. It could make someone else who’s not with us feel bad. Mr. Fluvial and I have set a ‘No Phones at Parties’ rule for our gatherings which is meant to encourage people to enjoy the moment they’re in rather than record every last detail in a virtual world and miss out on what’s actually happening. It’s also meant to discourage the posting of photos without specific consent from those who are IN the photos.
Rather than focus on big expressions of love, I’m going to focus on small. And I will expect small in return. As an introvert, I find that I stop fighting against my nature when I embrace the concept of ‘small’.
My community will always favor HUGE and the HUGE will always be focused on specific MVPs (deservedly so, trust me). That’s ok. But that doesn’t mean us non-MVPs should feel ‘less than’ or sad. This holiday season, let’s be under the radar with our affections. Let’s make an effort to tell people they are important to us and give that message to them only. Let’s be sustainable with our love. Never give more than you can afford to lose. Let’s accept the gift of the simple.
Oh, and the revolution will not be televised. 🙂