Does the world sometimes feel like a crushing place with all the projects, commitments, and events on your “To Do” list? Do you dream about stillness and silence and a way out of the feeling of doing too much? If this is you, then, it’s time to simplify.
Simplifying takes conscious effort, but small steps can get you there. And once you commit to
living simply, it can become a way of life that focuses on fulfillment as opposed to overwhelm.
Here are five ideas, adapted from zenhabits.net, that you can implement today as you embark on
your path to peace:
1. Purge — Clear your email inbox, clear your desk, or clean out your drawers. (Do this over
the course of three days, tackling one area each day.) By eliminating clutter and making
space in these areas your mind will instantly feel more clear. It's kind of amazing. The key is to make quick decisions about all of the pieces of paper and mail, phone calls and emails you need to take care of. Leaving things for another day is not an option. Go through your piles and file right away, or, throw it away. You’ll be breathing a LOT easier once you accomplish this task, which is the perfect way to make a long weekend productive. And once you establish the habit, this is a great way to free up your weekends in the long run.
2. Shorten Your "to do" List — Do you have more than 10 items on your list at a time? If so, it’s too
many. Reevaluate and prioritize the list and choose to cross off or delegate those things that
are least important to you, or, those things that you struggle to do well. Get in the habit of doing this regularly. You will free up lots of time AND a lot of creativity.
3. Be a quitter — Think about all of your commitments. Then think about those that
you love and could not live without and think about the ones that drain your energy.
Pluck one commitment from the time-sucking side and let it go. Send a polite message to
the organizer and merely explain that you no longer have the time to give. He or she will
understand and you can dedicate that time to that which makes you light up.
4. Forget Multi-Tasking — Instead, try single-tasking for a change! Do one thing, and do it
well, before you move on to your next task. You’ll be amazed at how much more
productive you become and how good being focused feels. In the end, you’ll get more
done without the scattered side effects that often accompany multi-tasking.
5. Limit Yourself — This goes hand-in-hand with single-tasking, as it involves setting
specific times to do the things that can eat up endless hours during the day, such as
checking and responding to email, reading blogs and RSS feeds, managing social
media. When you have a set schedule and time allotment for these activities, you’ll find
that it cuts down on the noise of the day. You might try 25 minute sessions and see how it goes.
In addition to these very practical steps, try spending time each morning to focus on your breath. Even five minutes of deep breathing and focused breathing will center you and set you up
for a clear-headed and peaceful day.
“People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road does not mean they are lost."