Q is for Quality Over Quantity: A-Z of Simple Living


'Q' is for Quality Over Quantity


This January, we’re taking an in-depth look at the why and how of simplicity with the A-Z of Simple Living. If you want to make 2015 the year you create a simpler, slower life, why not join us?


“Quality over quantity.”

It’s such a cliche. So much so that I nearly didn’t include it in the A-Z of Simple Living.

But it is just too important to ignore.

I think we need to look for quality over quantity in all things. But today I’m not really talking about the clothes you wear or the furniture you own. I’m not discussing the house you live on or the make-up you wear, the toys your kids play with or sporting gear you exercise in. I’m not really looking at stuff at all. Because simple living is about so much more than stuff.

Hell, life is about so much more than stuff.

No. What I’m talking about are the immeasurable things. The really important things. The things that actually matter. I’m talking about the quality of those things.

Friendships. Spirit. Character. Faith. Relationships. Love. Community. Connection. Humour. Joyfulness. Curiosity.

Think about the quality of these things:

  • 15 minutes of good, real, honest conversation with your best friend is so much more significant than shallow small-talk with a room full of acquaintances.
  • An hour reading with your kids is so much more important than a whole weekend passively watching TV.
  • A morning chat over a coffee with your lover is so much more fulfilling than half a day trudging through IKEA.
  • Watching a seriously great television show once a week (Walking Dead, anyone?) is so much more enjoyable than hours on the couch each night, flicking between channels.

Quality over Quantity

When you weigh up the options, it’s hard to disregard the importance of quality. But so often we float along, doing what we’ve always done and getting what we’ve always gotten.

If you adopt the idea of quality over quantity for everything in life, you will, ironically, discover more.

More time, more joy, more space, more fun, more meaning, more love, more presence, more mindfulness.

If you focus on more of these things:

  • Quality relationships
  • Quality time
  • Quality words
  • Quality play
  • Quality rest
  • Quality food
  • Quality entertainment
  • Quality friends
  • Quality reading

What do you stand to lose by focusing on quality over quantity?

And, more importantly, what do you have to gain?


11 Responses to Q is for Quality Over Quantity: A-Z of Simple Living

  1. Applying quality to experiences also gives us great memories which help to make us feel happy. That meaningful chat with a close friend or happy hour spent reading with your children will give you more lasting happiness and stronger relationships for the future.

  2. This has made me realize that I have been neglectful of some of the most important relationships I have in my life. My last living aunt,who grew up with me,being only six years older,my best friend since the fifth grade, my new friend who when we met was “friendship at first sight”. It is easy because I know they love me.
    But that is the very reason I need to nurture them. I knew too many people who died the last two years.
    It is not how much work I got done today, but how much love I was able to bestow.
    Thanks for the post ……… Mary Frances

    • Mary Frances, you so beautifully summed up the issue I have in pursuing quality relationships too. “It’s easy because I know they love me.” It’s such a privileged position, but I have to constantly remind myself not to take it for granted.

      Thank you. x

  3. Ah, this is my big beef with Twitter. Even though it’s about few characters, it’s so rarely quality interaction I see there. Ironic, since I came to this post via your tweet. :-) Thinking about how your ideas (which I love) apply to social media…

    • It’s a battle, isn’t it? To balance connection with value. As always, you get me thinking, Rita. And you can be certain I’ll be pondering the same thing as I spend time on Twitter today. ;)

  4. I’m impressed, I should say. Definitely rarely do I encounter a weblog that’s both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have hit the nail on the head. Your concept is outstanding; the concern is something that not sufficient people are speaking intelligently about. I’m extremely pleased that I stumbled across this in my search for something relating to this.

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  5. Well this makes me rethink having a third kid, maybe I should focus on the quality of my relationship and time spent with my two girls. It’s so hard to know if what they will gain from a sibling will make up for what they lose in terms if time from me.

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