“Possessions, outward success, publicity, luxury – to me these have always been contemptible. I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone, best for both the body and the mind.” ~Albert Einstein
Simplifying your life doesn’t come from adding things. Whether it may be with gadgets, clothing, possessions, social events or just things. Life may feel like too much. That it’s going by too fast. It isn’t. The things we have in our lives hold an attachment. We have added an attachment to these things. The more things we accumulate the heavier life gets. We end up acquiring so much that we resort to renting spaces to store all these things. The more we hold onto, the heavier we become. The more there is to worry about, take care of and commit our time towards.
Clutter is only good for two things. Gathering dust and stress. Physical and emotional stress. Physical stress comes from cleaning and maintaining what you buy. It takes time. Emotional stress? Imagine you just lost your latest gadget that you bought. How would that make you feel? How would it affect the rest of our day?
How can you live a simple life if you are only adding to it and removing your own space?
Simplifying your life is freeing. There is less attached to you. Less commitments. Less promises. There is more freedom that comes with simplifying.
Simplifying your life will give you more space, energy and time. It will give you focus. Focus that you can apply to what matters.
Most importantly it allows you to focus on yourself.
Here are 7 ways you can simplify your life:
- Make a list and prioritize. When you create a list you prioritize your needs. You set what you need to focus on. I can now finish a full article in 3-5 hours. Before it would take me 2-3 days! I had no priorities to focus on so my attention would fluctuate. I had no vision of what needed to be done. So my attention would spread across multiple areas and I could never pinpoint what I needed to focus on. I would constantly flip over to social media, t.v, and feed into pointless distractions.
- Make a list the night before and set out your high priority task(s). These are tasks that hold priority. Put down what you want to do. Projects or ideas you want to pursue. Important tasks you wish to do. Don’t put “Check Facebook” under here. For my list I always put “Write 500 words.” Start with 1 High priority task per day. When that becomes easier move onto 2 and so on. Make sure you start with your highest priority as soon as you can. This is so you can focus on what needs to be done and worry about smaller things later. Benefits: More time, better organization.
- Have less friends. Don’t look for quantity in friends, look for quality. Spend time with the people you love. It’s your time. You shouldn’t feel guilty spending it with those that make you feel like yourself. Friends that let you be, support and encourage you. I’ve never had fewer friends than I do now. Why? It’s because I shower less (just a joke). I have learned to value my time. Imagine your life with all your friends. Now imagine your life with no friends. Who do you want to be your friend? Who do you value in your life? Benefits: More time. Authentic and rewarding relationships.
- Learn to say NO. There is no need to complicate yourself. Don’t over extend yourself. Say no. If someone asks you for your time say something along the lines of “I can’t, that won’t work for me.” Don’t hesitate. You do not need to justify yourself or give an excuse. Don’t lie to get out of the situation. Be honest and say it won’t work for you. Respect yourself and value the time that you have. Over extending yourself will only complicate your life. Learn to tell others no when you don’t want to do something. Benefits: Respect for yourself. More time.
- Less stuff. Less possessions. Clothing, shoes, gadgets, things and stuff. Is a color for every type of shirt necessary? Are 20 pairs of shoes needed? Does your closet need to look like the inside of a store? No it doesn’t. Keep your favorite things. If you can limit yourself to 1 thing. Keep 2 if needed. You don’t need to spend your money on all these things. Sell or donate all your extras. Benefits: Less clutter. Less cleaning and maintaining. More money.
- Meditate. Start with 2 minutes a day. Work up to your own pace. Meditate daily. Do nothing, and sit still. Slow down. Meditation helps you think clearly. There is less self-talk, and mental clutter. Meditation has taught me to not hurry so much and feel rushed. If you cannot meditate yet, try a guided meditation. (Here is: How to Meditate and Why to Meditate ) Benefits: Too many to list.
- Schedule yourself. Give yourself downtime from everything. Spend time with yourself. Limit things like: T.V/Movies, shopping, going out on weekends and so on. Don’t do what you already are doing. Take this time you have and spend it with yourself. Be spontaneous. See where that takes you. Do what feels right. Some things you can do include: Go for a walk, spend time in nature, run, look at the stars, read, paint. Try something new and discover. How do you know you won’t enjoy it until you try it? Benefits: Find out your interests. More time to yourself.
- Smile. Regardless of your mood just smile. Do a half smile. It will make a difference in how you feel. Smile for a few minutes and then stop completely. You will notice a change in your mood once you stop smiling. You will see how a smile can affect not only yourself; but others.
Simplifying will show you how much more there is to life.
Simplifying your life doesn’t mean you become a boring person. It’s about introducing space in your life and removing the excess. This means having more time to do what you love. Having less clutter that doesn’t require maintaining and cleaning. Respect for yourself. More money in your life. Better organization of your time. Having genuine relationships. There are many ways to simplify your life and each time you simplify you will have more space in your life.
More space for what? Anything.
Until next time,