“Simplicity is the final achievement. After one has played a vast quantity of notes and more notes, it is simplicity that emerges as the crowning reward of art.” – Frederic Chopin
Whether life imitates art or art imitates life I cannot be sure, but one thing I do know is that simplicity is the pinnacle of all artistic expression. In my professional life as well as in my writing time one of my central aspirations is to find the simplest, cleanest, most elegant way to get the job done.
Life is simple. We tend to make it complicated through a variety of bad habits, two of which stand out to me this morning. The first is the tendency to focus on the voids in our worlds, that is, to emphasize through either longing for or complaining about that which is missing in our lives. Life is so much simpler, and easier when you emphasize and appreciate that which you have at present.
The second is the tendency to use negatives in speech and writing. Life is cleaner, more straightforward when you speak and write in the affirmative. For example, say what you believe in, rather than what you don’t believe in or what you like, rather than what you don’t like. Emphasize the presences, not the absences. This change alone can have a tremendous impact on your outlook and your experience of life.
Listen to yourself today. If you find yourself focusing on what is lacking or on what is wrong, do a little spring cleaning, turn the tables and see what happens! My guess is that life will reveal just how simple it is when you’re not busy cluttering it up with unnecessary physical, emotional and spiritual clutter.
“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” – Leonardo da Vinci