Today we look at simple living practices you can start today – yes, right now! Like we said before, this is a journey. It is not an all-or-nothing proposition. Start today to see if this type of lifestyle will fit for you. Adopting a few changes can make a huge difference in your life. Who wouldn’t want to experience some of the benefits listed above?
Start these 8 simple living practices today
Here are some practical ways that you can make things easier for yourself:
1 – Make a list of what is important to you
This includes the people you want to spend time with, the goals you want to accomplish in your life and even goals for work. Use this list as a starting point for making changes that can lead to these things happening for you.
2 – Pare down your commitments
What activities do you enjoy doing? Which ones take up far too much of your time? Who are you pleasing by filling your life with so much activity? Choose the things that make an impact in your life or that of another and try to reduce and eventually step away from the others. This frees up your time for those things on your list.
Let’s face it. Once you complete what is on your list today, there will be other things added tomorrow. Save yourself the aggravation by choosing the top three tasks each day and working to complete those. Tomorrow, choose the top three from what’s left and continue on in this fashion.
3 – Schedule free time into your day
You might try to fit all of the kids’ medical appointments into one day but that is unrealistic. You are bound to run out of time or run late for one or more of them. Schedule time with nothing to do between activities. Give yourself breathing room and space for fun or downtime.
4 – Practice being present
We do enough mindless tasks on a daily basis. Watching television while mindlessly munching; driving to an appointment while worrying about being late; chatting on the phone while watching kids at practice – these are just a few examples. It’s a wonder we remember what we do each day. Take a moment and slow down your surroundings. Stay in the moment that you are experiencing right now. How does it feel? What is happening? What memories are you recording in your mind right now? Eat and concentrate on each bite and how the food tastes.
5 – Identify areas of stress and eliminate them
What is causing you to worry or have sleepless nights? Map out ways to tackle these problems for a reduced stress load. If it is bills, develop a debt repayment plan and stick to it.
6 – Experience an attitude of gratitude
Help someone else by putting their needs first. This might be done through volunteering at a soup kitchen, a shelter or even the hospital. Spend time caring for others who need it to appreciate the good fortune you have been blessed with.
Do something that makes you happy each day – It may be reading a book (check it out free from the library), spending time with friends, watching the ducks in the park or playing with your children. Find a way to unwind with a happy task that is not rushed but very much enjoyed.
7 – Reduce cost of living
Create a spreadsheet that details what you spend each month on your bills and miscellaneous. Find ways to reduce costs on insurances, utilities, mortgages and car payments. Stop the hemorrhaging of cash through ATM withdrawals and impulse spending. Less money out means more money in your pocket.
8 – De-clutter your home
Do you need all of that stuff you are holding on to? If not, hold a yard sale; showcase it on eBay; donate it to a charitable organization (you get a tax break). Whatever you do, don’t bring items that are no longer used or useful back into your home.
This is the Part 3 of our 5 Part Series on Simple Living – Is it Right For Me?
Catch up with the series and our other topics:
Part 1: Decluttering Our Lives: The First Steps
Part 2: Simple Living: Just What Is It?
Part 3: 8 Simple Living Practices You Can Start Now
Part 4: Why Adopt A Simpler Lifestyle?
Part 5: Getting Rid of Excess