In my quest to become a total zen hippie chick, I’ve been practicing mindfulness and self care, or rather trying to remind myself to practice mindfulness and self care as I go throughout my day. I have to remind myself that yes, I could peruse Facebook while I eat my lunch but what I would really rather do is eat my lunch and then spend the rest of my time reading a book. So why don’t I do that? Because Facebook is right there on my computer with just a click of the mouse. It’s easy. A little too easy.

I also really enjoy having a nice snack of goat cheese and crackers at the end of the day, but sometimes instead I reach for a cookie because the cookie is sitting on a platter on the counter. I can snag a cookie and eat it in a blink of an eye, but it takes several minutes to get my cheese and crackers set up to eat. The cookies are easy. A little too easy.

Here’s the thing: I don’t always want what’s easy, but easy is…well…easy. Facebook and cookies are easy, but they don’t leave me feeling fulfilled. Spending a half hour reading a book gives me peace whereas Facebook gives me hives (I know you know what I mean here). Savoring my garlic and herb cheese on a crunchy Triscuit is infinitely more satisfying than a 3 day old crumbly cookie. Going for a walk in the park after work leaves me feeling refreshed, going for a walk through Wal-Mart after work leaves me feeling stabby, but sometimes it’s easier to skip the park so I can get home earlier. Throwing on an old oversize sweater is easier than carefully choosing and trying on and accessorizing a fitted top, but it leaves me feeling frumpy and unsatisfied when I choose “easier”. It’s easier to just roll over and go to sleep when I crawl in bed, but I feel more connected to my husband when I stay awake and talk to him for awhile.

Easier is not necessarily better.

I often have to make a conscious decision to do the thing that requires more effort because the payoff is so much bigger and longer lasting than if I choose the easier one. I often have to remind myself that I am worth the effort every time. 

It’s an ongoing process but I’m finally starting to believe that I am worth spending the money, the time, and the effort to have what I really want – peace, contentment, satisfaction, and total hippie chick zen-ness. It’s a slow process, but I’m getting there.