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“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.”
Lately, I’ve been determined to simplify things. I didn’t choose a “word of the year” like I did last year, but if I did it would definitely be “simple.” I’m seeking out simplicity in every area.
Everyone seems to be so busy, always on the go, overwhelmed, drained. Simplicity means a more organized schedule, more free time, less stress, and a tidy environment. It means a happier life.
So, I thought I’d share 5 of my best tips for living a more simple and happy life!
1- KonMari your stuff (and life).
There are so many good reasons to own less stuff. Less stuff means less stress, more peace, a more fulfilling life, more happiness, fewer choices to make, and even better physical and mental health. I’ve been a big fan of the KonMari method of tidying up since I read the book when it came out but the Netflix series made me love it more! I just love the idea that we shouldn’t own things that don’t bring us actual joy.
I really recommend reading the book and trying out her exercises in your home, but you should also use them to evaluate other areas of your life. Do you have any relationships that no longer bring you joy? Does your job bring you joy? Do you really want and need all of the apps on your phone? Are all of the subscriptions you signed up for necessary? Ask yourself this question about your possessions and your life. When you let go of things that don’t bring you true joy, your life will be much more simple and happy.
2- Get organized.
One of the biggest keys to a simple life is organization. When you’re not organized, things can get stressful and chaotic. Organizing your home is really important, but here are two other important ways to stay organized:
- Plan in advance – Plan as many things in advance as you can so you know exactly what to be prepared for. Invest in a good planner if you don’t have one and use it to write down important dates in a monthly calendar. Plan your week in advance. Write down your daily to-dos each day. You can also do things like meal planning or planning your outfits each week too!
- Write things down – It’s super easy to forget important things that we’re trying to remember – especially when there are too many things for us to remember! So keep notes in your phone of things you don’t want to forget or keep a small notepad with you and write things down. If you get an idea, you’re asked to do something for someone, or you realize you need to pick something up from the store, write it down.
3- Put your phone away.
I talk about this a lot but it’s such an important tip because I feel like it’s super hard for most people. Spending too much time on your phone is bad for so many reasons. Comparing yourself to others on social media can cause insecurity and feeling less than, it can distract us from what’s important in life, it can cause us to waste a bunch of time, and it can actually cause physical side effects.
I deleted all social apps off of my phone other than Instagram and I don’t miss any of them! I mostly just use my phone for talking to people, listening to Spotify, reading on my Kindle app, and posting to Insta. It’s helped me feel so much better! So try to delete time-wasting apps or limit your time spent on your phone. Put it away when you’re with loved ones, set a time each night to put it down, or just generally make a conscious effort to cut back on screen time.
4- Spend less than you earn.
In my opinion, spending less than you earn is important for two reasons. For one, swimming in debt makes life more heavy, complicated, and stressful. Not having a budget, borrowing money for things you don’t need, and chasing a lifestyle you can’t afford is the opposite of a simple life. It’s just asking for unnecessary problems.
Another reason why spending less than you earn is important is because, to me, living a simple and happy life means not buying a bunch of stuff. The key to happiness is not material possessions. Like I said in the first point, you should only have possessions that truly bring you joy. That usually means spending less money!
You might like: How to Take Control of Your Finances
5- Focus on your ikigai.
It’s SO easy to get caught up in the day-to-day things that you think you should be doing, and not making time for the things that are truly important to us. This can really get in the way of our ability to enjoy life – and it can make life more complicated. But focusing on your ikigai can help! Ikigai is a Japanese concept and it’s basically translated to “your reason to get up in the morning.”
Whether your ikigai is a passion project, your family, your religion, your job, a hobby, or anything else – focus on it. This will allow you to feel a deeper purpose and fulfillment in life. You’ll also begin to see the joy in all of the small day-to-day things that we usually take for granted. If you want to read my review of the book “Awakening Your Ikigai” you can find that right here!
You might like: Tips to Simplify Your Life So You Can Focus on What Matters