Do you remember a time when folks jokingly said that in order to escape the fast pace of everyday life they’d like to live in a grass shack on the beach…or in the woods amongst the flowers and the tress enjoying nature? 

It was the solitude and peacefulness of those locations that had us yearning for a slower pace in life.

As my Grandmother would say: Be careful what you wish for! 

Recent conversations with colleagues and friends have taken on a whole new perspective when discussing a “simple life.”

I don’t know about you, but many of the comments I’m hearing after weeks of voluntary isolation and social distancing include a whole lot of “things” we’ve been able to live without.

Not that anyone is wishing for this situation to continue, we would all like to be socializing with our friends and families with hugs and air kisses, but, I wonder if there is a new conversation on the horizon about living a more simple life?

Many of my contemporaries are talking about redefining or revising their life-style choices to encourage a reasonable return to work, taking control of the pace, so to speak.

We’ve begun to ask ourselves:

Why do we need to rush around from appointment to appointment?

Why do we feel obligated to schedule meetings back to back
with a diary that is bursting at the seams?

When did the pace of work and life get to the point that we no longer have the time to enjoy things?  Really enjoy them! 

One positive outcome from our recent experience will be the recalibration of our own personal GPS.  We are taking a look at how many hours per week we need to work in order to accomplish the same results.  It just seems more efficient to have virtual meetings and discussions with fewer miles on the car or less taxi receipts to submit at the end of the month. 

I heard one colleague comment that she hasn’t had to gas up the car since March! 

I’ve been wondering if we will see companies and organizations beginning to rethink the nature of work and if concepts like flex-time and job sharing will become the norm.

One thing is for certain, where possible, folks have taken a renewed interest in life-style choices that include food and fitness.  Grocery stores have seen a surge in sales with most restaurants closed and access to fine dining within our recipe books and household dining rooms. 

Fitness has taken on a whole new perspective with more folks walking, biking and running in our neighbourhoods than ever before in an attempt to stay fit and feel healthy.  

At one time, I would never have agreed that cooking from home and finding alternatives to the gym were positive lifestyle changes. 

Perhaps we’ve actually begun to live a simple life?

With current discussions in the media around an imminent second wave and ongoing challenges with COVID-like viruses on the horizon; I’m not sure that things will ever go back to the way they were before we found ourselves buying face mask protection and rubber gloves.

One thing is for certain, there are a lot of conversations around creating a new definition for a “simple life.” 

As I write this blog, my suburban neighbours are playing loud music, laughing and socializing with their friends enjoying a pot luck dinner.  Keeping things under the 10 person maximum of course.  I must admit, it is a welcome addition to the backyard sounds even if the birds are chirping louder and the bunnies are a little more visible as they eat the grass in my garden.   

Like you, I’m not sure what the future holds; but I am certain that we will all be taking a good hard look at what is important as we begin to navigate a new sense of normal and take a proactive approach to thriving once again.

My Grandmother was right:  Be careful what you wish for! 

Trish Tonaj is a Master Coach, Certifed Personal Trainer, Author, Mentor and Speaker. She is the founder and guest blog host for a portal in support of the entrepreneurial spirit and sharing great ideas.  Join us and share your story!