The word luxury can mean so many different things to different people. However true luxury has nothing to do with designer dresses, fancy cars , five-star escapes and opulent décor.
True luxury provides comfort to the soul. It sparks a sense of sensuality and wonder; it is felt in the heart and heard in the deep sigh of the soul. It gently uplifts the mood and brings about a deep sense of stillness and contentment.
It is not to be used as an object to define oneself or boost one’s sense of value, it does not create debt or stress, and instead it is used as a remedy for the soul.
"The most common mistake people make is believing the term ‘luxury’. It’s become an excuse for a lack of common sense and invariably stands for over-priced, poorly considered products, whether it’s a hotel, an apartment block, a handbag or a holiday" -British designer Jasper Morrison
The essence of true luxury instils a sense of ease and tranquillity which allows you to live well, even though through the eyes of the un-awakened world it may seem meek. True luxury will vary from person to person based on their circumstance and personal preference, but the key is to always remember that it is about great comfort, high quality, substance and sensual living.
It brings beauty and grace no matter what your income, location or situation. True luxury is something that we can all have. Choose to seek quality rather than quantity, personal style instead of trendy fashion, truth instead of expectation, knowledge instead of resentment, happiness instead of suffering and homemade comforts rather than commercially mass-produced goods.
True Luxury Is About
Owning or renting a modest home that you can comfortably afford. It is about mindfully choosing a place that you will make full use of – no excess of rooms that you don’t use for weeks on end. Excessive and unused space is wasteful, and it requires more natural habit to be destroyed for that fifth bedroom that you really just don’t need.
Defining your own definition of “the good life". Discover your own authenticity and passions by not following others; instead choose a way of life not because others are applauding you but because it brings you a great deal of peace and contentment.
Less is more. Stop seeking out more food, clothes, friends, money, cars or square footage, for all this does is breed stress, clutter, ego, drama and a disconnection to the world. When deciding to bring something new into your life make sure that it will add a deep sense of quality to your own life – true friendships, reliable transport that will get you from A to B and ethically produced clothing that makes you feel your best and will last for many seasons.
Being true to your own sense of style. True luxury is not about buying a particular handbag just so that you can show the outside world that you have [insert designer name here]‘s latest creation on your arm. It is about buying things that move you, things you truly love, no matter whether they are vogue or not.
Dropping the need for recognition. Never do something purely because it will bring you acknowledgement from others. Be humble, follow your passions and live your life silently and gently, this is the natural rhythm of the soul.
True luxury can be anything from clean laundered bed sheets, picking fresh flowers, savouring the taste of a sweet and juicy peach to indulging in kitchen rituals. True luxury is a sensual saunter through life, celebrating the spirituality of the senses and marvelling at the miracle of life itself.
Living a life embracing those simple and true luxuries is a celebration of your senses while allowing yourself to fall passionately in love with life despite all its complexities, compromises and contradictions. It is about finding beauty and sensual delight in life, recipes, nature, chores, rituals, decorating, people and fashion. It is about seducing the most important person in your life – YOU.
Restore your weary overworked soul by indulging in quality over quantity, and find the things that ignite your spirit, cause your heart to skip a beat and make your soul sigh.
The Re-examined Life
In a life that is full of options, it is easy to become overwhelmed and forget what truly matters to you in your own life. After all, we live in a culture where we supposedly get our comfort from an abundance of stuff. With this culture it is therefore extremely challenging to simplify our life.
I gently urge you to become inspired to transform an “ordinary” lifestyle into a living state of grace by choosing quality over quantity so that you are only left with the things you find useful, purposeful and beautiful. Something that I have learnt over the years is that the simpler we make our lives the more abundant they become. By making the effort to truly focus on what’s important through choosing quality over quantity results in less stress and paradoxically, a sense of a fuller life. You will find richness and abundance in your life by choosing things, relationships, and experiences that are fulfilling and special, rather than opting for simply more of everything.
Take the time to re-evaluate what really matters to you so that when you are choosing how to spend your moments, money or time you can fill them with quality as opposed to quantity.
"The unexamined life is the wasted life" – St. Augustine
The beauty about taking the time to re-examine your life is that it can reignite your passion in life by inspiring you to clear out the clutter and replace it with more meaning and substance that can enliven and inspire each day no matter what your income, location or situation.
A Challenge For You:
Today I want you to take some time to fully enjoy a simple luxury; it can be the slow savouring of a small portion of something delicious, watching nature, spending time with a loved one, taking a bath or walking in the forest.
Uncovering Simple Luxuries
The beautiful reality of life is that there are thousands of simple luxuries out there that are waiting to be savoured. You just have to open your eyes and ‘see’ them. From the first cup of freshly brewed coffee you sip in the morning (or tea) to gently unwinding the day with a decadent book. No matter where you find yourself in the life you have created, the simple luxuries are always there. However, it is your job to seek them out.
Here is what living a simply luxurious life looks like for me:
- Spending time in my garden. Digging in the dirt helps me connect to nature and helps ground and nourish my spirit.
- Nibbling on a raw chocolate late in the evening with a cup of chai tea.
- Greeting the morning with an early morning walk.
- Spending an extra few minutes to make a luxurious bed, one that I can fall onto after a hard day’s work.
- Living in a home that is well organised and free of clutter.
- Freshly pressed linen.
- Listening to old jazz or country vinyl records while I prepare dinner
- Using only ingredients sourced from nature for my morning and evening beauty ritual
- Drinking tea outside in my garden under the warmth of the sun
- Taking an ocean swim
- Basking in my evening bedtime ritual. If you are inspired to do the same, then read my blog post 11 Tips to create a sleep ritual for a tranquil night’s sleep.
- Eating cold, crisp and sweet watermelon on a hot summers day.
- Trying a new recipe to help channel my inner Julia Child.
- Taking photos of nature.
- Bringing nature into my home, such as bowls of shells, driftwood, flowers, and plants.
- Listening to Mozart as I take a hot bath with Epsom salts and lavender.
- A closed wardrobe with forgotten winter coats hiding a magic and a forgotten world.
- Scarves. Oh, how I adore scarves, from hand-knitted scarves, over-sized scarves, vintage scarves that I find at thrift stores to hand-painted scarves that I buy at a local artisan market. Some people buy spoons, magnets and souvenir shirts on their holiday travels, whereas I buy scarves.
- Handmade patchwork quilts.
- Sipping on a hot cup of lavender tea to help me unwind before bed.
- The smell of nutmeg oil burning.
- Hot soup simmering on the stove-top.
- Fairy lights wrapped around the big branches of the tree outside my home.
- White linen dresses.
- Vintage music boxes and trunks.
- Walking on a deserted beach on a windy winters day.
- Giving myself a herbal face steam.
- The smell of lavender as I walk in my front door.
- Wind chimes tinkling with the breezes.
- Windows wide opened on a starry night.
- Watching butterfly’s and bees flutter on the flowers in my garden.
- Old vintage trunks and wardrobes.
- Warmed eye pillows filled with lavender and linseed.
- Spending time in my rose garden.