In this fast-paced, highly digital society, handling our life can be taxing – from having to manage our finances to choosing the proper clothes to deal with work. There seem to be too many things to do and you don’t even know where to start. As a result, you get stuck and can’t even move on.
Tons of articles online have already preached about the concept of simple living and I couldn’t agree more. Simple living is not just about the idea of owning things you actually need and discarding those that are of less value to you. It is life filled with purpose and meaning – with hope and contentment.
The thing is – how can we simplify our life? How can we make things manageable and less complicated amidst the busyness of it all? These questions prompted me to curate tips and approaches to build a simple yet fulfilling life.
Thus, join me as I walk you through the process of how I simplify my life and the benefits of a simple lifestyle. Take it from me – it’s never been easy but here we go.
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Benefits of simple living
It makes you more grateful and appreciative
Simple living brings balance, joy, and appreciation to your life. It allows you to truly value the little things you own and feel contentment with all the simple things you have.
It fortifies your sense of well-being
Simple living gives you more time to work on things that really matter such as your well-being and mental health. Thus, make every moment count doing things that bring you joy and happiness.
Though simple living is not a cure-all to our life’s problems, it can provide you a sense of freedom, control, and clarity. Cutting back on the things that don’t give you value surely keeps you on track – making you more productive all throughout the day.
Lowers cost of living
Simple living teaches you to live within your means or if you are any luckier, saves you money. This may include downsizing your house or apartment depending on your situation.
As you only have few things to do, you can have more time to spend with your loved ones. After all, genuine human connection is what we all crave.
Less means few options to choose from. For instance, having few items or clothes reduces wasted time in thinking of what you should be wearing for the day.
It teaches you to be hopeful and optimistic
When you live simply, you get to relax and put your mind at ease. This then gives you a sense of hope, optimism, and of feeling much more alive. That despite the chaos in life, there’s beauty in simplicity.
Simplify your life with systems
Create systems that work for you to simplify your life. By systems means creating habits or adapting useful tools to accomplish a goal. In my case, I use time blocking to be more productive.
Time blocking is another method of time management. This simply means you schedule, organize, and plan how you spend your day. You block or set a particular time for a particular activity. This works well if you have so much on your plate.
I find this quite helpful since I get to perform faster and complete more work. It leaves me no room for distraction. As a result, I can fulfill what I intend to do on a given day.
Ways to simplify your life
1. Get rid of unnecessary stuff
This is the first step I needed to do when I took the vow to simplify my life. Trust me – it was a pain in the neck. Decluttering isn’t simple!
Letting go of those things we have been gathering or collecting is not a piece of cake. But this is just necessary to live a less stressful life.
Stockpiling things we don’t need isn’t helpful. It only takes up space and it could be bothersome at times. So, take my advice and only keep those that are extremely important for you.
2. Embrace minimalistic lifestyle
When I was young, I heard this phrase somewhere else – “go back to the basics!” And literally, that’s what I started doing and have been doing all this time.
I believe that one of the keys to simplify my life is to embrace the novel idea of minimalism – which is all about keeping the things that give actual value to us and letting go of those that are not. Instead of priding myself on all the possessions, I can afford, I just simply did away with them.
Having a minimalistic lifestyle gives me much freedom and focus. It even boosts my happiness level as I can pay more attention to what I truly care about. As they say – “less is more”.
3. Get rid of toxic and unhelpful people
Yep – toxic people do exist and they are all over the place. So, beware of this type of individual as they only jeopardize your well-being.
Toxic people are commonly those that have such a negative mindset or those that do nothing to improve their lives. Once you spot the sign, you have to distance yourself right away.
It’s better to be with the company of like-minded people than waste your time with those who are not. This is absolutely one of the integral approaches to simply my life and yours as well.
ALSO READ: How to get rid of toxic people
4. Pay off debt
Complications arise when bad debt is there – just lurking somewhere ready to bite. So for me, to keep my life simplified, this is what I avoid.
But I understand if some of us here have some debts waiting to be paid. Take this then into account. Make paying off debt a priority.
That way, you would no longer have to worry about the increasing interest if you haven’t paid as soon as possible. So, save yourself some trouble and pay your dues right on time.
5. Reset your home weekly
This is one of the activities I enjoy. I don’t just do this to simplify my life, but I do this because it’s what I’m passionate about.
Just imagine the new look you can give to your room or house by doing a home reset. Or the clean and tidy space you can enjoy. Oh, it’s riveting and stimulating!
Resetting our home gives us this fulfilled feeling and it sends our guests a welcoming atmosphere.
ALSO READ: How you can finally be organized
6. Stop wasting your time on things that don`t bring you any value
Time is one of the world’s most valuable things. We cannot afford to let it go to waste by doing things that are meaningless. Thus, to increase my productivity level as well as simplify my life, this is what I need to practice every day.
If it’s high time for me to focus on work, then I have to focus. If I find myself getting distracted by social media, I have to remind myself that I don’t have all the time on earth to waste.
That if I continue to squander my time on something unimportant, I’d probably regret it later. We don’t want that, do we?
7. Set your priorities
Setting a multitude of priorities does more damage than good. It could be frustrating and pressurizing sometimes. Thus, set your key priorities – those that are urgent at the moment.
To maintain a clear focus and to better simplify my life, this is what I do. And when I prioritize, I make my list consisting of three to four tasks. It’s better to do less than do more.
8. Plan your meals
Mornings are always busy. There are times we struggle with what food to eat. For to avoid this, I do plan my meal the night before.
Meal planning can do so much for us. It saves us from rushing and what is called decision fatigue.
So, ditch all the hassles and get your meals planned and ready ahead!
9. Simplify your routines
Having a simple system to follow every day is one of the things I did to simplify my life. It was tough at first but I learned as I go.
So, you can simplify your life by planning ahead and hitting the sack at the same time every night.
Do something that surely brightens you up. Read a self-help book to keep you inspired. And do away with social media or better yet, switch off your phone.
10. Watch less TV
Spending less time watching TV obviously comes with lots of benefits. You get to tune out the stressful political issues or nonsensical dramas of celebrities.
For me to keep my life simple and to ensure a high caliber of focus, I do away with watching TV. No one is stopping you from doing this but make sure that you manage your time well.
Watch for perhaps 30 minutes then proceed to accomplish a much more important task.
11. Dress from a simple wardrobe
Everybody loves dressing up, no? Well, that’s great! But my approach in simplifying my life is to keep a simple but classy wardrobe.
I love to keep the basics and the essentials. The white, gray, and black shirts, blouses, slacks, or dresses. This way, I can simply pluck the dress or blouses easily without having to spend minutes or hours deciding which one to wear.
It is then imperative that you discover your style. Streamline your fashion by sticking to the basics but elegant, no less.
12. Clear your desk
If you wish to be more efficient in working, then you have to keep a clean desk. Simplify your life as a whole by clearing that extra stuff off the table. Toss out what you don’t need at the moment.
It’s quite annoying to see a bunch of things on the table, right? You cannot focus. Everything is just all over the place.
To avoid complicating your day any further, start with clearing your desk and only keeping the essentials.
13. Learn to pack light
When we go for a hike, or when we travel to someplace, we are at times inclined to pack too much. We sometimes don’t realize that we’re just burdening ourselves when we do this.
Again, save yourself from worries and troubles by packing light. This can surely help you in moving with ease from this point to another. It’s even easier to keep tabs on your belongings.
Thus, ditch the habit of packing more than you should.
14. Consider living in a small house or apartment
With a big house or apartment comes great responsibility – indeed! There is this long list of house chores waiting to be done. This is not an ideal way to live your life most especially if you’re working.
Optimizing your life by considering living in a small house is highly recommended. For me, this is perfect as I no longer need to worry my head about the rent or the mortgage I have to pay, or the chores I have to do.
ALSO READ: Things to consider when renting an apartment
15. Learn to say NO
I have the tendency to say “yes” to almost all invitations. But I figured that this is just jam-packing my schedules with a lot of commitments. There are just too many appointments that I need to meet.
If I really aim to simplify my life, then I have to learn to say “no” to those that do not align with my values and goals. And perhaps, you should also do the same.
Saying “no” is one of the best forms of self-care. It creates spaces in your schedule and gives you much time to re-charge.
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OVER TO YOU
Life is meant to be enjoyed – to be filled with great and meaningful memories. One way to do so is to embrace simple living – to simplify your life in such a way that makes you feel alive and fulfilled.
Do away from those that burn you out such as constant social media interaction or being with people who deflate your energy. Focus instead on some things that are enriching and have the capacity to bring out the best in you.
As they say – “fill your life with experiences, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.”
QUESTION: How do you simplify your life? What are your ways of simple living?