I don’t know who recommended The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell, but I picked it up two weeks ago not knowing what it was about. After reading 300 pages about epidemics, I came away with one key point about simplifying: context matters.
According to the Gladwell, “what really matters is little things….You can prevent crimes just by scrubbing off graffiti and arresting fare-beaters…..it is possible to be a better person on a clean street or in a clean subway than in one littered with trash and graffiti” (150-168).
That last sentence (emphasis mine) really stuck with me. It’s possible to be a better person in a nice place because a cared-for environment shows that someone will notice when it’s messy and work to change it. This is why a peaceful home is a clean home. It’s because we feel like someone will notice when it’s out of place, and so we all do our part to keep it tidy together.
It’s a far cry from dirty dishes in the sink to the crime rate of New York, but there’s a lesson I can learn here: Keeping a home clean and uncluttered means that everyone will feel better. I think I can live with that.
©2009 at Simple Savvy, the simple living blog where I included a picture of Sadie on this post because nothing says “peaceful home” like a sleeping cat.