Over the past few years I've adopted the idea of minimalism more and more. I'm definitely not to the extreme of having next to nothing, and my house often gets cluttered with toys and things sprawled out everywhere. But I have grown to love the idea that less is more, and that having fewer things can mean more joy. I've never been one to want it all, but this idea of simplifying my life has brought me more joy and I want to help you get that too.
People sometimes ask me how I keep my house so clean. The truth is that it's not really that clean. But by keeping it organized and having less stuff around, it appears to be cleaner than it actually is. Staying organized helps to make your space feel less stressful and overwhelming even when it is dirty and messy. I refer to it as organized chaos. Even though things can get a little crazy at times, staying organized helps to have less clutter and a clearer mind in the craziness. Have you ever felt so overwhelmed that you just needed to clean your space or organize your office before you could process what to do? That's exactly what I'm talking about.
But with less things, staying organized is easier. Your house will get messy, things will be out of place at times, but putting it back together may be a little bit easier if you keep it simple. Part of staying organized and avoiding clutter is to have a place for everything and to keep everything in its place. And naturally, it's easier to find a place for everything when there's less stuff around.
Focus on the good stuff
Less things = less stress. Less stress = more joy. Sounds simple right? It may not be as easy as 1, 2, 3, but in the end, having less has brought me more joy. Having less to take care of and less to worry about gives you more time to enjoy what really matters. We get caught up in the notion that we need more. More things, more money, more success. But all of those things can easily get in the way of the good stuff. By having less in your life, you actually have room for more of the good stuff - the stuff that really matters in life like people, moments and memories. Those things that you just can't live without can be easily overshadowed by things we think we need.
Where to simplify
Simplify in your home by purging things that you don't need or want anymore. My theory is that the things that fill our homes should be both beautiful and functional. If it doesn't fulfill one or both of those, get rid of it. Having more things means clutter can happen more easily and it is easy for things to get out of control. But by being intentional with what we buy and keep in our homes, we know that the things surrounding us are either going to bring us joy or be put to good use.
Simplify your work or business by saying no to thing that aren't in the big picture. This is one of the hardest things for many of us to do, but by saying no to things that won't get you where you need to be in the end will free up space for what you need to be focusing on right now. The best way to do this is by setting intentional goals and keeping the big picture in mind. I know the feeling when you get an exciting email to do something fun, but if it doesn't fit into your big picture, it is best for all just to say no. You will end up feeling overwhelmed and your heart won't be in it. Keep things simple and focus on what you do best.
Simplify your mind by clearing out the clutter every night. At the end of the day (or whenever you feel overloaded), do a brain dump and get it all out. By clearing your mind of all the random things to do and thoughts about everything, you are making room to focus on what is in front of your right now. This is so helpful for me when I start to feel like there are too many things to do or think about. Most time, it is just a matter of sorting through it and taking it on one thing at a time. I write down everything just so that it won't be stuck in my mind and I can think clearer and focus on one task at a time.
Simplifying your life with less stuff can lead to more room for what matters. Having less things, less stress, less clutter, and less to worry about has given me the freedom to be more present with those few things that matter most. We don't need to have it all to be happy. We just need those things that are most important to us and we need to invest our whole heart into just those.
Do you live by the theory that less is more? How do you simplify your life?
PS: If you liked this, you might also like Dealing with overwhelm.