The other day, I spent some time thinking about how I would describe to a stranger what it is I did day-to-day. I had been making the imperfect analogy of being retired, which is a little removed to most people’s conceptualisation given that I did not have enough funds to sustain myself indefinitely. After some pondering I arrived at the a turn of phrase that I felt really captured how I felt: living a medley of simple pleasures.
Over the year, I have been calibrating my lifestyle and my mindset towards an equilibrium where I could count every moment as a simple pleasure. Obvious moments aside like social situations or reading, I have slowly begun to find pleasure in the more mundane activities. I don’t think I have reached the point where I look forward to washing the dishes, but I do find pleasure in doing them. The same thing has happened with doing the laundry and other household chores.
This is in stark contrast to how I lived my life in years past where I was in a perpetual chase for grand pleasures –– many of which were tied with status and income. This new mindset I’ve donned has decoupled from the status games of old (I’m sure the urge is still there, but by evidence of the way I live my life now, it is at the very least greatly diminished). My definition of wealth has shifted to more prominently feature and prioritise my mind, body, and soul.
A common refrain I hear myself telling friends is that I feel so rich, as rich as I have ever been, and perhaps most consequentially, as rich as I am ever going to be. Obviously, I am not so in a purely financial sense, and I recognise there are still so many areas of the human experience I have yet to explore e.g. starting a family. But in terms of a foundational, almost baseline level of wealth, defined by the richness of how I spend my days, I think I am there, and this is oh so freeing.