Living Luxury Regardless of Your Budget
“Luxury is anything that feels special. I mean, it can be a moment, it can be a walk on the beach, it could be a kiss from your child, or it could be a beautiful picture frame, a special fragrance. I think luxury doesn’t necessarily have to mean expensive.” Aerin Lauder
In the face of media coverage that touts the glories of excessive living, fueled by an illusion of unlimited funds and unrestricted access it’s easy to draw the conclusion that luxury is reserved only for the wealthiest among us. I’m happy to report that this is not true. In fact, if you reflect on the definition of luxury as proposed above my Ms. Lauder nothing is farther from the truth. When we define living luxury to mean anything that feels special it’s amazing how long the list can grow, of things we can frame as luxurious.
To prove the point I’ve dedicated the balance of this article to a long list of things that “feel special” to me and that I deem to be luxurious. What would be on your list?
A starched shirt, a warm terry-cloth towel, a cashmere sweater on a chilly afternoon
The airy feel of a crystal goblet, peanut butter and jelly on warm toast, puppy breathe
A scented candle, leather bound book, crisp bed linens and a single orchid plant
A leather notebook, a weighty fountain pen, the Sunday comics, sunsets
The smell of lavender, a new suitcase, pumpkin carving, a heavy wool jacket
New shoes, a little black dress, cufflinks and a linen shirt on a hot summer day
Silver picture frames, a camera in hand, Christmas decorations, kittens
An inspired idea, a hot cup of coffee, home-made cookies, a zero-balance on your credit card
A smile, a hug, holding hands with someone special, mistletoe
The smell of a roasting turkey, a crackling fire, receiving flowers, falling snow
Falling rain, water-proof boots, an umbrella, hot tea
An old friend, a newspaper, well-worn jeans, a turtleneck sweater
Thunderstorms, rainbows, splashing in a puddle, dry clothes
Stacks of books, time, quiet, bees-wax
As you can see my list is hardly filled with items of exaggerated expense; in fact most are ‘things’ gently woven into daily life for most people, myself included. What elevates them to the status of luxury is our mindset, our awareness and our appreciation.
If we move through our lives with a mindset that regularly searches for the beautiful, the precious and the dear then these will be the things we find. And with each discovery there will be added layer that transmutes the experience into one of great and lingering luxury.
A great mindset will be put to waste if our eyes are not wide open to receive, to see, to perceive these delicious finds often tucked into ordinary corners of our lives.
And, of course, without a level of gratitude or appreciation all the living luxury in the world can quickly become expected and we begin to take for granted more than we are grateful for. This negates the entire exercise.
It’s much better to be wrapped-up in the many little luxuries which a conscious and grateful mindset discovers than all the expensive ‘toys’ in the world.