Living Simply in the Big City

Thursday, March 30th, 2017

When I first moved to London 6 years ago I wasn’t convinced I’d ever love it. My husband grew up here, and to him it is the best place on Earth, but I have always dreamed of owning a little cottage in a lively village surrounded by fields and forests. Instead we own a small ground floor conversion apartment in a nice, but busy, South East London suburb. I love my job, so my desperation to leave London is waning, but I still strive to live the simple lifestyle which I have dreamed of since childhood. But how easy is it to really step away from the consumerism and ‘wants’ culture of the big city?

At the time of writing this post I am at the beginning of my ‘simple’ journey, and still haven’t got my husband on board (although he isn’t actively against the idea!) and although I have begun to strip our home of the many material things we simply don’t need I still have a very long way to go.

For a while I began to browse property websites, keen to live closer to work and in a home that would be more ‘long-term’, but I am beginning to realise that this does not reach the root of my discontent. London properties are expensive, never big enough, and we’d be certain to fill any extra space we acquired with additional stuff.

So instead I decided to use my Easter holiday break from work to begin a transition into a more minimal, meaningful home. I sat down making sketches and lists of things I could do to create a flat which felt more spacious and welcoming, and began to bag up clothes I no longer wear to send to local charities. It’s a small start, but it’s a good one, and the feeling of calmness that comes with less choices because there are simply less things to choose from is refreshing. I am only left wondering one thing; why didn’t I do this sooner?


Siobhan, 28, London UK.
I am a primary school teacher, sushi eater and cat-lady dreamer. I blog about green beauty and my journey to eco-living. Learn more →