Nine suggestions to help simplify your Life.
Sit down with your favorite drink, relax and take out a pen and notebook and begin to write down all the things that complicate, harass and bring stress into your life. Come up with a list of life simplification activities.
Number One: Dump Stuff
Most of us have developed a life style built around material possessions to such a level that out lives are largely consumed by the acquisition of and the caring for stuff. You must start by eliminating the compulsive consumption habit of shopping and buying things. This is the first step in beginning to let go of possessions—not all but perhaps eventually 50% or more. Do you really need 3 electric shavers or four food blenders or 5 sets of dishes or 24 pairs of shoes? Get going on that Garage sale now!
Number Two: Manage Your Time
Do not allow the schedule to be filled randomly by anything or everybody. Slow down and protect your time, it’s really all you’ve got –it’s your life. If you find yourself racing against the clock, start by making time everyday to take a deep breath and slow down. Learn to say no to activities or people that you can really do without. Make a daily to do list of necessary activities and prioritize them. Stick to your schedule and allow for some time to relax, read or just do nothing. It will seem strange or uncomfortable at first, but it will allow you to give thought to your life and what you want it to be. It can protect your health and improve the quality of your life.
Number Three: Simplify Your Work
If your job seems to endanger your physical or mental health, change it, dump it, re-plan it or downsize it. On obsession with being ahead in the rat race can an often does lead to high stress, frustration, tension , anxiety, and ultimately disease (dis-ease). Be realistic about your career goals, is there a better way? It may just save your life.
Number Four: De-Tech
There was a time not too long ago that at the end of the day, we went home and for the most part left our work where it should be – at work. Today voice mail, cell phones, pda’s, Blackberrys, and portable pc’s all serve to make us more productive –or so it would appear at first glance. What is the cost to ourselves and our companies of “being on” 24 hours a day 7 days a week? Make a pact with yourself to turn off some time each day all your electronic devices and watch less TV. Do not be a slave to these devices, many famous people of means have someone else monitor and manage their email. If it makes life more complicated, perhaps life without it would be better.
Number Five: Audit Your Relationships
Take a close look at the people in your life, probably most are sincere, supportive and generally good people. However, simplifying your llife may mean saying goodbye to some relationships. It may be as simple as phasing them out of your life schedule. Negative people can rub some of that negativity off on you, so be selective and let into your life only positive, caring people who mostly make you feel good in your dealings with them. The bottom line is to keep in your life people who care for you and can be counted upon when you need them. Of course it works both ways; you must care about and support those in your network too.
Number Six: Get Help—Delegate
Its fairly obvious that in this specialized world centered around work, you cannot do everything. Get a part time assistant or secretary to take care of the increasing number of things you must do that are stressful just because of the shear number of them. Things like sending email, getting postage stamps or office supplies, running errands, buying food, keeping records or files, all can be done more effectively by someone else. This leaves you to focus on you core business or activity. This could be done by a spouse or someone in the Family. A small expense for someone you can delegate these tasks to can make all the difference in your level of stress.
Number Seven: Get Outdoors
Spend sometime in a Park, Field or Forrest. Taking a leisurely bike ride through a park can be an excellent way to enjoy the out doors. Find a rock on a Mountain and go sit on it and take in the natural beauty found evening a city Park. If done regularly this can be very therapeutic to body mind and spirit. Perhaps even closer to home spend sometime in your backyard or garden. You could even consider growing some organic vegetables or fruit trees. There is something very special about watching the miracle of seeds growing to be plants and bearing healthy edible food.
Number Eight: Meditate
There is a huge volume of material written on the benefits of meditation. A brief 20 to 30 minutes of meditation can make a positive difference in the way your day unfolds. You will begin to observe life rather than react to every negative event that comes into your life—like the guy cutting you off and making you brake as he cuts in front of you to exit the freeway. Our fast paced world delivers a steady stream of challenges, obligations, opportunities and responsibilities. Meditation will help you to relax and remove clutter from your mind. You can maintain this relaxed state to a greater degree by choosing for example to listen to classical music as you travel by car through out the day.
Pick a quiet place in your house, one where you will not be disturbed by phone, person or pet. Meditate in the same location every day. Just listen, focus on your breath or slowly re-peat an affirmation. Do no try to solve problems or plan your day.
Number Nine: Serve Others
It may seem like this could be a way to add more to your life and it can be if done the wrong way. It starts with simply showing kindness to others, complimenting them or pointing them in the right direction. This will in fact be uplifting to you too. Basically a happy life is one lived in service to others.