Designing A Life I Love

How I’m simplifying my life to have more joy.

Depressed woman sitting in a dark room. Her hand rests on her forehead in obvious stress. A cup of coffee sits in from of her. She is wearing a sweater.
Photo by Anh Nguyen on Unsplash

My body felt like cement as I stepped out of bed to prepare for work. My unhappy stomach churned, my head throbbed, I struggled to face the day of demands.

I popped aspirin, anti-diarrhea, anti-nausea and followed it with high blood pressure meds. I have to work regardless of how bad life feels every day.

“Your life is suppose to feel good to you …” Esther and Jerry Hicks

I decided to stop the crazy rushing and money focus by stepping away from a life that’s creating endless anxiety, worry, and overwhelm.


How? Gradually!

I’m gradually stepping into a more simple life by:

  1. Reducing my spending needs such as a less expensive home, pay off debt, living within my means, and spend less than what I make. I am willing to do and see things differently.

  2. Switching Careers to one that flows well for me, matches my interests, and is a better choice for me and my specific needs.

I walked through the house thrilled to find an affordable piece of painted tin to call home. I barely noticed the hole in the floor and strip falling from the ceiling. Excited, I purchased a less expensive home and paid it off as soon as I could. It’s small, not the best, but paid for. It’s a good feeling and relieves stress on the monthly bills I have to pay.

The cheaper house was one way to help pay off debt. My bills were out of control. One day I innocently went to the mailbox. I received shocking and unexpectedly high bills that sent a mix of fiery anger, tears, helplessness, and overwhelm rippling through my body. Angry and determined to get control of this chaos. I made a plan. I pay off debt gradually by paying the bill with the least amount owed first and doubling the payments.

When It’s paid, I add that payment amount to the next bill. I keep going until all debt is cleared. I have two more bills left to clear before I’m totally out of debt. When I open a bill and see my debt is paid and I owe nothing, I feel a warmth spread throughout my body. I always breathe a sigh of relief.

Happy, smiling woman sitting in a meadow of tall dry wild grass looking into a mirror.
Photo by Caroline Veronez on Unsplash

I sat in my chair looking into the computer. I was staring at my savings account. It goes up and down because I find myself needing to dip into it each month to cover bills. I try to save money each month by spending less than what I earn. I’m trying to control my spending habits better. I put things on a wish list for 30 days instead of pushing the Purchase Now button. Then I ask myself if I can find a way to create the product myself. I use recycled materials to try problem solve how to modify them into something useful for me. I enjoy this challenge that helps me feel a little more in control and capable. This is becoming a lifestyle for me, and I’m always working to do better and learn new skills. It’s a gradual learning process.

My body has been so overwhelmed by stressful trauma that it can’t handle any kind of stress whatsoever anymore. Life has just been too filled with trauma and stress. My anxiety now is pretty severe and requires me to live life differently than I used to. I’m learning to focus more on gratitude and the present moment. I stay away from anything triggering anxiety and stress. This sounds simple but isn’t. It’s a matter of noticing my attention and redirecting it to more positive things. My body relaxes and feels an instant calming when I do this.

I focus on peace. I ask myself, does this or that bring a peaceful feeling? Does it make me smile, feel gratitude, feel joy? Is there an absence of anxiety and overwhelm? Is it an energy booster? Then it probably is a good thing to continue. If not then I better walk away from it.

Women in red swimsuit sitting on the beach in the shade next to a sign that says This is my Happy Place.
Photo by Artem Beliaikin on Unsplash

Decide What’s Important to You!

Constant worry over money, acceptance, job loss, rejection is throwing my entire body into chronic chaos!

Life feels like I’m constantly fighting against a current.

I’ve decided…..

  • To start going with the flow that is natural for me.

  • Nature is my place of happiness and healing. Nature is part of my focus in designing a life I love.

  • I feel empowered by learning how to do things for myself. Learning to do things myself helps build my personal wisdom, knowledge, and skills.

  • To release stress and fear about the unknown and strive to enjoy each moment of life.

  • To know what naturally flows for me to earn a living, and define what that means for me. I am retiring early and switching careers to one that is less stressful.

  • To spend less, find alternatives, be a lifelong learner, and have a will to do things myself.

One way I use to help me with decision-making is prayer. My experiences with prayer are part of the reason I’m choosing to simplify my life. If you are interested, please see my article on What I Learned About Prayer.

“Feel appreciation for what-is and eagerness for what’s coming.” Esther and Jerry Hicks

The Recap:

If life isn’t going the way you want, change it. That can be a gradual change, more education, a different job, or change locations. Know your values and what you want to experience in life. Set goals that will enable you to have the experiences you desire. For me, that means a less stressful life and more joy.

If you are interested in reading more about making changes read my article: Making Changes: Wonder, Explore, Experience.

Thank you for reading my work,

Bobbi Lynn Gibson

Read my other Supportive Articles related to Autism.


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