Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Simplifying Life

Today on Twitter, Tsh from Simple Mom asked a good question - "what is the one most important thing you do to simplify your life?"  My friend Jenny replied, "Just say no."  Such good advice, which I forget every few days, and then am reminded of again...over and over in my life.

For the past three weeks I have felt like my life has become a little quieter, and it has felt good.  I couldn't figure it out at first. Then I noticed that the ringer on my cell phone was broken, and it would only vibrate.  Come to find out all external sound on my phone would not work. Suddenly, I couldn't talk on the phone while driving because my headset wouldn't work on my phone.  I couldn't answer the phone in a store because I never heard it ring.  I didn't even know someone called me unless my phone vibrated while it was in my pocket.  Then at home, our wireless phone sets need to be replaced since the batteries keep dying mid-conversation.  I've made a lot less phone calls, knowing the phone would probably die. That means a lot less talking has been going on for almost a month now.  Something about all of this felt like things were being simplified.

This all got me thinking to how I should simplify in other ways in my life.  This one small thing made a difference in my mind - my mind has felt less chaotic since I haven't been trying to multi-task so much.  My thinking is clearer, and I feel a little less stressed.

Here are other ways I have found to simplify my life:

-Running less errands. So many of the errands I run are unnecessary. I just want to spend money. I just want to "look."  I just want to get out of the house.  But running errands means more traffic, more money spent, and more frustration.

-Spending less.  Another way to simplify.  Less time is spent balancing the checkbook, less time is spent shopping or eating out, and it is way less stressful.  Can I get a witness?!  (Unless of course you don't have any money to spend, that is very stressful, and I know all about that too.  But I'm talking about spending less - even at the Dollar Tree - on things we don't really need)

-Going online less.  I am the biggest offender of this, because I am online all of the time (I just keep the internet open and happen to walk by it all day).  However, I find that the more I'm online, the more stressed out I feel. Not sure why, but I know I see a correlation in my own life.  I also get a lot less done.

I can also simplify my life by going to bed earlier.

Today at the gym I turned the TV off on the two machines I worked out on.  Sometimes simplifying just means less noise;  less traffic flowing in and out of my head; less congestion in my thoughts.

Of course, I am continually reminded as well that God can speak to us more clearly when we are focused on Him and reading his Word.  Yet I think we cannot always hear Him clearly if our minds are too busy.

My goal for this week is to simplify more - starting with my mind.

How about you - what do you do to simplify your life?

1 comment:

  1. Great thoughts to simplify. My kids use my iphone when we're out and turn off the sound so they can play games. Usually I have to run into someone who asked, "Did you get my message?" before I realize I haven't got a call for a few days and the ringer is probably off.

    I don't really mind.

    Simplification starts with realizing shame has no part in our lives. It's shame that makes us busy. Shame and guilt are two separate things - I feel guilt for what I've done or haven't done. I feel shame for who I am.

    I don't know why I dumped all that into this comment...just wanted to say great blog. Glad I found you.