This Women's Health Week we wanted to explore how living simply can improve your mental health. Simple living can have many different meanings depending on who you ask, but it often involves learning to live with less, finding joy in daily life and essentially, feeling good about how you’re doing it. But where do you start?
We spoke with Bohannah Gerritsen from @thesimplefolk_ about her quest towards a simpler life.
Tell us a bit about yourself the “simple” life you life with your family and why you chose to do so.
We’re a family of five from Western Australia who spent the past year travelling around Australia in our 60 series Land Cruiser and trailer. ‘Simple’ means many things, but to me it embodies a care-free, uncomplicated and minimalist approach to life. This has been our ethos since before we got married and has evolved organically into raising our kids in this way. What may seem like an unconventional life to some, feels only natural to us. Choosing to spend quality time together, moving flexibly with the ebb and flow of life and not taking ourselves too seriously. We like to keep things pretty simple when it comes to all aspects of our lives and are grateful to be living a little outside the box.
As a mum of three, how do you balance work, family and travel?
I’m very grateful that family, travel and work are things that have co-existed seamlessly with our lifestyle over the years. Since my husband left his job in 2021, we have been able to fulfill our dreams of a slow childhood for our children whilst working towards our creative endeavours. Teamwork definitely makes the dream work and I couldn’t do it without him, or my kids!
You and your family spend a lot of time on the road together, how do you find time for yourself?
Yes, we do! Time alone isn’t something I’m quite used to and luckily, I don’t crave it either. Tye and the kids know when I’m in my creative zone and are pretty good at giving me the space to get my work done, even when sharing close quarters. Whenever I’m feeling like I need some me-time or self-care, I’ll wake before everyone else and take myself for a solo walk or unroll the yoga mat for some stretches. Sometimes a little quiet time to clear the mind is all I need.
What are your top 3 essentials for a big road trip?
Lots of healthy and wholesome foods and snacks. It takes a little more preparation but it’s much more satisfying eating well on road trips and having a delicious meal to look forward to when you pull over.
Skincare and sunscreen. I love feeling hydrated and moisturised on a road trip and since we spend a lot of time outdoors and at the beach, a good sunscreen and moisturiser are both important items.
My film camera. It’s so fun to shoot film sporadically on road trips and there’s just something so nostalgic about childhood holidays.
Spending time outdoors is a big priority for you guys, any tips for getting your kids to wear sunscreen?
Our kids are pretty good at putting on sunscreen. They sometimes need a little reminder, but I think we’ve spent so much time at the beach they know sunscreen goes hand in hand. Now they’re older, they usually apply it themselves, and the fun scents from We Are Feel Good Inc. make it all the more fun for them to apply.
What’s yours (& the kids) favourite We Are Feel Good Inc. sunscreen?
Oh there’s so many! I’m currently loving the Good Morning 50 SPF as part of my daily skincare routine. The girls and I also love the smell of the Kakadu Plum - instant summer vibes. But the Sensitive SPF range is our non-negotiable for the whole family. The kids absolutely love the Lip Balm!
What advice would you give other mums looking to live a simpler life?
De-clutter often. It’s incredible how much we accumulate soon as we have children and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with all the ‘stuff’.
Get outside daily and let that sun charge you up, but always remember sunscreen.
Take away devices for a day and give your kids the opportunity to get bored! Why? Because that’s when they will be the most creative and use their beautiful, big imaginations.
Prioritise eating well and get your children involved in mealtime preparation and cooking. Start when they’re young so they can absorb new tastes and experiences. It’s so important to set healthy habits early.
Follow your bliss. Do things that make you feel good
. Don’t overthink and have fun!