Modern life can be overwhelming to simplify your life.
We have smartphones, tablets, desktops computers and TVs in our faces all day long. This causes mental dispersion- a sort of chaos of the mind. We’re now connected to the rest of the world 24/7. This is great, but it also has its disadvantages.
We spend so much time looking at screens instead of real people, put so much focus on building virtual friends instead of nurturing a small group of close friends in our daily life and technology has made us so fanatical about trying to keep up with a million things at once that our productivity sinks, our minds never rest and we gradually build up stress and anxiety.
This on top of our obsession over material items are the major reasons our lives have become over-complicated. We connect happiness to getting the next new gadget or some other toy or trophy to the point where, unless we get it, our minds are never at peace. And when we do get it, the feeling quickly dissipates like sand sifting through our hands. Then, we’re off to acquire something else to get the feeling back.
I appreciate simplicity, true beauty that lasts over time, and a little wit and eclecticism that make life more fun. ~Elliott Erwitt
Everyone knows the benefits of having a good clear out – throwing out unnecessary and unwanted items can not only free up literal space around us but also frees us of much-needed space in our minds. Living a more simplified life can improve how we think, feel and move around in the world. Here are 10 ways to simplify your life while creating space for happiness and well-being.
The 10 Most Important Ways to Simplify Your Life
1. Your Possessions
Too many material possessions complicate our lives to a greater degree than we ever give them credit. They drain our bank account, our energy, and our attention. They keep us from the ones we love and from living a life based on our values. If you will invest the time to remove nonessential possessions from your life, you will never regret it.
2. Abandon Your Negative Thoughts
As humans, we spend a lot of our time caught up in negative thoughts that bring nothing good into our lives. While we should deal with negative emotions and not shy away from them, negative thoughts are much more dangerous as they can grow rapidly and cause unhappiness and do nothing to improve our quality of life. Negative thoughts such as bitterness, resentment, jealousy and hate do absolutely nothing for us except ultimately make us miserable.
We have great control of our thoughts so choose to cut down the amount of negative thoughts and feelings you have. Learn to forgive and choose to think and see the positives in life.
3. Reduce The Amount of Screen Time
We spend so much time either staring at a computer screen or the TV. With binge-watching shows the latest addiction, we can often end up spending hours of our day with square eyes especially if, like most people, we use a computer for work as well. While TV, watching endless YouTube videos or playing computer games can be a nice form of escapism, too much can have a negative impact on your outlook and attitude. You don’t realize the amount of time you’re robbing yourself of that could be spent doing more beneficial and productive activities.
4.Simplify your thoughts
You might not generally consider your thoughts as an aspect of simple living, but it’s one of the most important areas you can simplify your life. Modern life is filled with distractions. These distractions over-complicate life as much as, if not more than, anything else.
This is when we go back to the practice of mindfulness. The easiest way to do this and begin quieting your mind is to start practicing sitting meditation. Sitting meditation is the most concentrated form of mindfulness and therefore will have the greatest effect towards what we’re trying to achieve: a more quiet mind.
5.Use Fewer Empty Words
This isn’t to say stop talking! However, note the types of words you utter. Are they positive? Honest? Meaningful? Or are they purely coming out of your mouth in the form of gossip, hate or jealousy? Take note of what you say – we’re not perfect and most of us have a tendency to indulge in words we know we shouldn’t use. Eliminate the empty words that bring no real meaning to what you think or want to say. Quality is always better than quantity.
6.Eat Well and Move
You wouldn’t expect your car to run very well if you filled it with low-grade petrol and only switched the engine on once a month. Your body is no different. It’s made for regular movement and it thrives on healthy foods.
Eat well and make exercise a regular part of your life. A healthy body can also often mean a healthy mind.
7. Cut Down On Social Media
Social media is so present in our lives that there’s rarely anyone who doesn’t have a Facebook, Instagram or Twitter profile. But despite there being positive aspects to social media, being constantly bombarded with ‘friend’s’ lives can take its toll on us. Sometimes when life isn’t quite going our way we compare ourselves to others but we often forget that we’re basically looking at people’s highlight reels. We never really get to see the full picture and this can cause us to feel dissatisfaction and unhappiness.
Simplify your life by cutting down on social media – not only for your own sanity but to stop the endless checking every five minutes. Getting those notifications may make us feel important but it’s fleeting and empty importance that doesn’t actually add anything to our lives. You can gain a whole lot more time by having a break once in a while.
8. Spend Time Disconnected
We are spending more and more of our time plugged in. This can lead to obsessively checking smartphone messages, blogs, emails, tweets, etc. We’re in danger of letting life pass us by while we click away.
As fantastic and powerful as technology is, we need to make regular time to disconnect as well.
9.Reduce The Number Of Goals You Set Yourself
In the effort to make ourselves better people and improve ourselves we often set goals – which is great – but having too many goals can prevent us from achieving them because our focus is spread too thinly. By only having one or two important goals, your focus can be more concentrated and your success rate higher. Once you’ve accomplished your goal then start the next one – this will stop any stress and give you a sense of order and a greater sense of accomplishment to simplify your life and once it’s done because you know you put 100% attention and effort into it.
Multi-tasking is a myth. There. I said it. OK, sometimes it’s possible. But it doesn’t get us the results we once thought it did. Multi-tasking only makes us -less- productive, more scattered and reduces the quality of our work.
Multi-tasking also causes us stress and anxiety. We weren’t meant to take on 2-3 things at the same time. We’re most effective when we focus on one activity at a time and give 100% of ourselves to that activity.
So don’t fool yourself. No matter how much more productive you think you are while attempting to multi-task, you’re not. You’re only hurting yourself and forcefully complicating your life.
Purity and simplicity are the two wings with which man soars above the earth and all temporary nature. ~Thomas a Kempis
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