How to Live Intentionally in a Chaotic World (and a giveaway!)

Last night I couldn’t sleep. Tossing and turning, I just couldn’t seem to release the stress of the day. This morning I realized why – my work life and home life have no definable boundaries.

Admittedly, yesterday was a catch-up day after being out of town, but it pointed out an underlying tension.

As much as I am trying to simplify, as much as I am getting better at saying “no” to things, my mind still races and anxiety gets the better of me.

Lightening my workload doesn’t do a darn thing if I’m still not spending my time wisely. A slower, more intentional life doesn’t happen unless I am intentional about making it happen.

A pile of good intentions gets me nowhere as I quickly multitask myself to death.

I was thinking about all of these things when I picked up Notes from a Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic Worldby Tsh Oxenreider.

Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider

I’ve been getting to know Tsh over the past year as I started contributing to her blog The Art of Simple (formerly SimpleMom). I am continually inspired by the way her actions match up with her intentions when it comes to living simply with purpose.

As I began to read devour this book, I felt like Tsh was speaking directly to me.

But the downside is that my work is always, forever, only a click away, and it’s never done. As soon as I post a Facebook status update, my stream asks for one more comment, one more click, one more “Like.” There is no “The End” to the Internet. Never before in history have we been given the keys to be able to work and earn money doing what we love. And yet never before have we been so eagerly invited to work 24/7, without ever a chance to feel done. It’s hard to slow down when the race has no finish line.

Ugh.  Yes.  Ever feel that way?

Whether you are a blogger or not, today’s distractions are noisier than ever, wouldn’t you agree?

After years of trying to figure out how to live beyond the chaos, I realized I could use a guide, someone to help me put things in place.  Enter Notes from a Blue Bike.

Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider

From Turkey to Texas, Oregon, and beyond, Tsh takes us on a journey towards living intentionally, setting boundaries, putting first things first, and swimming against the stream of popular culture.  I got so much out of this book because it holistically touches on all areas of life: Food, Work, Education, Travel, Entertainment, and Self-Care.

Because if you are going to live an intentional life, you can’t go halfway.  You have to be all in.

Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider

And this time I feel ready.  Ready to go all in.  Ready to stop thinking about how I wish things could be.  Ready to actually sit down and plan it out so I can live it out.

Ready to hit the pillow at night not with a racing brain and anxious heart, but with a sigh of peace and contentment, knowing I am living the life I was created for.


Are you ready to live a more intentional life?  I’m giving away 5 copies of Notes from a Blue Bike!  Enter to win through Rafflecopter below and I will choose 5 winners on February 8th.  You can also pick up a copy on Amazon (releases on February 4th).

a Rafflecopter giveaway

  • Amy January 31, 2014 at 10:11 am

    I so need this in my life

  • Sara Gyolai January 31, 2014 at 10:13 am

    Wow, this looks like a great read! So hard to slow down when everyone around you is speeding up (adding more activities, more commitments, more technology, more travel, etc). Thanks for doing this giveaway!!!

  • Emily January 31, 2014 at 10:14 am

    I think our culture glorifies being busy. It seems like the world respects you more if you are always saying yes, always achieving something, always doing more. Sometimes that’s where we get trapped in finding our value too.

    Would love to read this book!

  • Katie @ Healthy & Happy Hour January 31, 2014 at 10:15 am

    I always enjoy reading your posts, and this one is no exception. That quote is striking (both the pros and cons), and I would love to learn more from the book. Bookmarking it on GoodReads either way!

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:21 am

      Thanks Katie!

  • Tracy Mueller January 31, 2014 at 10:49 am

    Yup, this battle has really taken a toll on me recently! Thanks for the heads up about the book. Now, to find time to read…

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:21 am

      Ah yes, time to read…

  • katy b January 31, 2014 at 11:20 am

    so much technology in this world makes life zoom by

  • Caroline-Fighting For Wellness January 31, 2014 at 11:53 am

    When we are stressed with a long list of things to do, we get these rush of various chemicals, and then as we deal with the tasks these chemicals decrease. We get addicted to the “high”, which means we do more and more. That’s one of the many reasons. “we” also tend to look down on people who are less busy, especially if we’re busy ourselves.

  • anndunawayteh January 31, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    Sounds like I need this book pronto! I just picked up “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode” by Crystal Paine and working my way through it but would love to read this as well! I can so relate to there not being definite boundaries between work and home life. I desperately need to create some! Thank you!

  • Gwen January 31, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Like you said, our lives are immersed with technology always at a fingertip away. I’m glad I can totally leave my work at work and take the time daily to do nothing. 😉

  • Tina January 31, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    Would love to glean from the wisdom Tsh has to offer. I’m constantly trying to simplify…probably a hint there eh…why the heck is it so constant?! Something’s apparently not quite working yet, ha! 🙂

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:21 am

      Oh my gosh, EXACTLY.

  • Rebecca Pytell January 31, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    There is just so much stuff competing for our attention, so much stimulation. I feel like it is looked down upon to slowdown and be mindful.

  • Robin January 31, 2014 at 2:23 pm

    While technology has the ability to allow us to become more connected with people around the world (at lightning speed), it also means we expect that of others on an individual basis.

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:20 am

      Very good point.

  • TammySab January 31, 2014 at 3:20 pm

    Very much looking forward to this book! I think it’s so hard to slow down in our fast-paced culture because we link our value to how busy we are (or appear to be).

  • Amber January 31, 2014 at 5:17 pm

    Always so encouraged by Tsh Oxenreider and The Art of Simple contributors! I have been eagerly awaiting this book!

  • Tina@GottaRunNow January 31, 2014 at 6:44 pm

    I think it’s hard to slow down in our fast-paced culture because there are so many things that we want to do. Sometimes we just have to learn to realize when enough is enough!

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:20 am

      Yes! There are too many good things, we have to narrow it down to the great things.

  • Jenn Spohn February 1, 2014 at 12:18 am

    Yay for the book release! I’ve been watching from a distance the lead up to this.

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:20 am

      It’s so good!

  • Colleen February 1, 2014 at 7:23 am

    I’ve been looking forward to this book. Being busy seems to be a badge of honor so I think it’s difficult to step away and do the opposite of everyone. Though I try, it’s not always easy.

    • InspiredRD February 1, 2014 at 10:20 am

      Yes definitely agree. That’s why we have to swim against the tide…

  • Jason E Woods February 1, 2014 at 9:27 am

    Sorry, no time in my life to slow down ans answer this question……

  • Natalie February 1, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    I culture says “Go, go, go!” “If you stop, you’re not productive enough, getting enough, doing enough.” It’s exhausting! My word this year is “simplify” and reading Tsh’s blog has really helped me slow down, simplify, and organize. I would love to read her new book!

  • Zaankali February 1, 2014 at 4:01 pm

    I don’t know why it’s so hard to slow down but it sure is! I’m anxious to read this book. 🙂

  • garek February 1, 2014 at 5:18 pm

    We use technology that’s practically instantaneous. There’s no slow key. I remember when it took televisions time to warm up before you got the picture. And it didn’t bother us. No hurry, no worry.

  • Jackie February 1, 2014 at 8:40 pm

    This is completely up my alley. I am working on similar stuff in my own life. Looking forward to reading this, even if i don’t win. Thanks for sharing this!

  • Amy Guinnee Flores February 2, 2014 at 5:46 am

    I’m really looking forward to this book, sometimes I feel overwhelmed with everything. But other times I know I need to be more intentional with relationships.

  • DawnatDawnings February 2, 2014 at 7:13 am

    this book intrigues me because I can’t for the life of me figure out how to slow down.

  • turner_bethany February 2, 2014 at 9:11 am

    This sounds like a great, needed read.

  • Cassandra Wright February 2, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    This post really resonated with me. I look forward to reading the book.

  • Stephanie February 2, 2014 at 6:59 pm

    I am about to have the busiest month of my life. This book is just what I need. I want to have balance in my life and I fear that I won’t have that this month.

  • Jess @ Floptimism February 2, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    What you said about intentions vs actions really resonated — it feels like I have a laundry list of goals and promises and commitments, but unless I am focusing 150% on them, they fall to the way-side.

  • Uhuy Wala February 2, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    It’s hard to slow down when your country is undergoing a development that requires a lot of people to move together to build a better place. It’s like the industrial revolution back in 19th Century. People are competing against each other just to be look up to and that creates nasty arrogant people. It’s time for paradigm shift. Enjoy our life.

  • Susan S February 3, 2014 at 7:53 am

    So many good things, but with everything coming at you at mach speed thanks to technology we miss the great people in front of us because we’re too busy looking at the good things filling our inbox.

  • KimW February 3, 2014 at 11:16 am

    There are so many distractions, both good and bad, that it’s hard to focus on the important things. So necessary though!

  • Kevin Holly Keckler February 3, 2014 at 11:44 am

    I think I over-commit to doing good things for others and then it just ends up back firing on me and my family. I need to remember that by saying no, I’m doing better for my family by spending more time with them at home.

  • Stephanie Sheaffer February 4, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Tsh’s book is definitely on my “to-read” list. I admire her unconventional ways of thinking (and living).

  • Liz Woodfield February 6, 2014 at 8:02 am

    This is exactly what I have been thinking about and what I am trying to work on this year! You can tell how horribly I need this because I have been thinking about this blog post and meaning to respond for 6 DAYS now. I love Tsh’s blog and it helps me to keep things in perspective and keep my priorities straight. I have been reading a lot this year (goal 3 books/month) and this looks like a great read! I want to manage my time better and live a more intentional life.

  • Stephanie February 6, 2014 at 9:01 am

    Need this reminder – It’s so easy to get caught up in it all!

  • Charity February 6, 2014 at 9:19 am

    I believe it’s so hard to slow down in our fast paced culture simply because it’s fast paced. And more specifically, because we are all moving at 100 miles an hr, and it seems that no matter how fast we go–we’re never quite going fast enough. There’s always something MORE that needs to be done or said, we could be making money if we just worked harder and longer…etc

    Each of us are faced daily with the challenge to take a deep breath, and just be still. C.S. Lewis put it so eloquently: “It comes the very moment you wake up each morning. All your wishes and hopes for the day rush at you like wild animals. And the first job each morning consists simply in shoving them all back; in listening to that other voice, taking that other point of view, letting that other larger, stronger, quieter life come flowing in. And so on, all day. Standing back from all your natural fussings and frettings; coming in out of the wind” (C.S. Lewis).

  • Susanna February 6, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Thank you for the reminder. I myself have to battle this each and everyday. I keep telling myself, ” I need to be doing more, helping more people, working more, making more money..” when the truth is, I really just need more of Him.

  • Andrea Worley February 6, 2014 at 9:43 am

    I think our cultures glorifies busy-ness, and so we do to. I think we get caught up in all the things we need to get done or have to get done and forget that it’s ok to say no, it’s ok if you don’t get it all done in 1 day. sometimes it’s ok to slow down, and take a break. give yourself a break too.

  • chambanachik February 6, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    I think there is pressure to be like everyone else. And everyone else is busy, or we assume them to be. We don’t want to be left behind.

  • Tiffany Stewart Lance February 6, 2014 at 4:00 pm

    We don’t spend enough time in nature — something that inherently makes us slow down.

  • What it means to hop on a bike | The Art of Simple February 7, 2014 at 2:09 am

    […] How to live intentionally in a chaotic world :: Inspired RD […]

  • Tara February 7, 2014 at 9:49 am

    It’s so hard because it starts so young…we accidentally get swept up in the busy starting in kindergarten!

  • Rachael Telford February 7, 2014 at 10:00 am

    I think it has to do with the Fear of Missing Out. For me, anyway.

  • Adrienne February 7, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    It is so hard to slow down because we have access to a ridiculous amount of information at our fingertips on our phones!