3 ways to live a simpler life

I’ve shared before that my theme last year was simplicity.

Well, I soon realised that living a simpler life was not going to just happen.

This is what worked for me then:

Re-examine your goals regularly

Regularly can mean monthly for some people; for me, it means weekly as I get sidetracked very easily if I don’t keep reminding myself of what’s important.

Every week I’d look at my life map (I need to do a blog about that) and see that big, bold word on the top of the page – SIMPLIFY.

And when I saw a hectic schedule, I’d ask myself, “is this representative of the simpler life I want?”

Make the tough decisions

My good friend, Beth, and I held a call last year called 5 steps to a saner, simpler life. I was the co-host and yet I probably wrote 3 pages of notes myself.

I loved that call for many reasons but the best reason is this:

She shared that we often think we have no choices when the choices are tough but we always do.

E.g. You have too many time commitments and think you can’t get out of any. Yes, it’s a tough choice and even harder to tell your kids no, we won’t be signing you up for 3 after-school activities but it can be done!

Fix your environment

On a more practical level, let’s talk about simplicity with material goods (stuff).

If you want to get out from under the clutter, you’ve got to start making different choices.

When I work with clients, yes, we organise but more than that, I help them to think about the behaviour patterns that led them to the state of discontent in the first place.

If you keep buying things you don’t need, then stay away from the shops. If you don’t go to the mall, you can’t shop.

I had a really bad habit of buying info products a few years ago.

The bad habit was not in the buying of the products; it was bad because I wouldn’t  use them and they’d all sit on my hard drive doing nothing.

I actually joined Beth in a Spending Fast one month. Once I was half way through an internet transaction before I realised, “hey! I’m on a spending fast” so I stopped and then put a post-it note on my credit card so I’d stick to my resolve.

What is your definition of a simpler life?

Is this something you aspire to?

What are your best tips for living simply?

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Comments

  1. First, I know I have to get my bible study for the week done on the weekend, or it won’t happen.

    Unfortunately, this was going to be a year of health for me, and I have been trying to keep things simple since I get up so early that there’s not much time to exercise. I spend my time on the train knitting and listening to podcasts on my iPod.

    Once at work, I plan my day, put it before God, and try to avoid distractions.

    On the way home, I knit or listen to my iPod on the train ride.

    When my husband picks me up at my stop, I’m usually exhausted, don’t do much, and get ready for bed. There’s room for little else, but I try to keep it simple.

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