Smart and Simple MattersI don't normally bring close friends onto Smart and Simple Matters.

It's not because I don't have amazing friends (I do) or because those amazing friends don't have vivid insight to share (they do).

It's just because a lot of my friends don't live their lives around simplifying, organizing, and/or being money wise. But one of my best friends – Jessie Kinowski – has more wisdom about simplicity through having morenothing” than anyone I know.

I recognized that Jessie needed to be a guest on SASM when she told me last year:

All I want more of is… nothing. I realized there was something more that I wanted and that I had the power to control that.

In this episode, I heard the knowledge flow when she told me things like:

The whole point about getting to a place where you're comfortable with nothing is being on a path that doesn't lead anywhere… that can actually be a good thing, like a cul-de-sac. It doesn't go anywhere. It's a dead end. But those are some of the most highly valued properties because they're secluded and they're private and they're safe in their own community.


You don't have to think about what's next if you can focus on what is.

[Tweet that]

So pour some tea or coffee and get ready to hear about a whole lotta nothin' (not in a Seinfeld “this is a show about nothing” kind of way, but in a deep, spiritual, and powerful “let's strip away all the excess in life until the only thing we want more of is … nothing” kind of way).

Warning: don't play drinking or eating games with the word “nothing” while listening to this episode (even if you're just drinking tea).

What You'll Learn

  • Nothing to GiveHow to deal with other people's unexpected reactions when you rapidly evolve.
  • Why getting to nothing and being comfortable with it is amazing.
  • How one day in seventh grade can fundamentally change a person.
  • Why you've never truly arrived at the answer.
  • How living at the end of a cul-de-sac can lead to beautiful nothingness.
  • Why you should prioritize yourself (without being selfish).
  • What to do to let go of expectations.
  • How to stretch positive experiences with self-reflection.

Resources and Items Mentioned in This Episode Include:


  • [08:35] Jessie's seeds of awesomeness
  • [14:27] How experiences build upon each other
  • [18:47] What happens on a path that doesn't lead anywhere
  • [23:46] Jessie's experiences in the float tank
  • [33:47] Finding balance and The Value of Simple Declaration
  • [39:05] Tipping points and the ripple effect of being unbalanced or dissatisfied
  • [43:10] Choosing uncertainty over unhappiness
  • [51:25] Self-reflection and letting go of expectations

Special Thanks

I want to give a special round of thanks to all the people that have provided an outpouring of digital hugs, high-fives, congrats, and kudos since the birth of my second son, Clark.

I feel extremely grateful to be in the kind of community that celebrates the joyous moments with you. If you are one of those people that has given me a good ol' pat on the back, I appreciate the heck out of you!

And I'm looking forward to celebrating the big moments in your life too.

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The transcript will not be available until I find a new transcriptionist (if you know someone good, let me know).

I'm Grateful for Your iTunes Reviews!

If you enjoyed this specific episode or the Smart and Simple Matters show in general, I always appreciate when people go to the iTunes page and leave an honest review. Every single review is a huge help and received with gratitude!

If you want to make me incredibly thankful, like the people who have recently left an iTunes review, here are the four quick steps (assuming iTunes is already installed):

  1. Visit the Smart and Simple Matters iTunes page here:
  2. Click the blue button on the left labeled “View in iTunes” below the cover art of the show
  3. When iTunes loads, scroll down below the “Customer Reviews” section and click the link labeled “Write a Review”
  4. Write a review with whatever title you like, whatever length you have time for, and give the show an honest rating. If you don't think it deserves five stars, don't rate it as a five star show.

And if you have someone or something you'd like us to cover on an upcoming show, tell us in the comments below.

Photo Credit: OUCHCharley