Happiness Habits – Day 23: Happiness In Simplicity
In my last post I talked getting to your foundation with meditation, and finding quiet in your mind. Today, I want to take that one step further, and make your meditation practice a little easier. The idea is to find happiness in simplicity.
Vacations can be so relaxing because we escape from most of our “stuff” and the responsibilities that come with it. You don’t have to worry about all sorts of projects and chores around the house and can just relax and enjoy the space you are in. You’re away from appointments, work, and being reachable. This allows you to focus on the experiences and the people around you.
While it would be nice to be on vacation 24/7, in your day-to-day life, you can reduce the clutter in your life and simplify things. Simplifying allows you to focus on what’s important and what makes you happy. Here are some simple little ideas to help you start decluttering.
Decluttering Your Home
Let’s start with the simple stuff. There are tons of books, blog posts, articles and even TV shows about decluttering. While it isn’t easy, what it boils down to is to go through your home, one room or one area at a time and finding the things you no longer need or want. These can be thrown out or given away. In the end, you are left with things you appreciate and a lot more clear space that’s more relaxing to live in and easier to keep clean and organized. It can be a very emotional process – just ask me sometime! And it’s totally worth it.
Decluttering Your Calendar
Next take a look at your calendar, or the activities and obligations in your life. Being busy might feel productive or worthy, but often the best use of our time is to cut out all the extra stuff that really isn’t necessary and doesn’t bring us joy. Don’t be afraid to be ruthless and even a little impolite at times. Feeling obligated shouldn’t be a good enough reason why you’re doing something. Get rid of it and then use the gained time to do things that help you relax, get ahead, and most importantly make you happy.
Decluttering Your Mind
Last but not least, it’s time to declutter your brain. It’s amazing how much “junk” we let build up in there. We all have this running list of things we should do, ideas for future projects, what to cook, what to shop for etc. What we don’t realize is how much brain power that kind of thinking takes up. The best way to deal with it is to do a “brain dump.” Get out a piece of paper and start writing it all down. Everything you have in your head that you think you need to remember from the book you want to read next and what to cook for dinner tomorrow, to the meeting you need to schedule at work. Write it all down. Don’t judge, don’t edit, and don’t try to organize it. All of that can come later. For now write it down to get it out of your head. Feel free to add to the list over time.
When you’re done notice how much lighter and happier you feel with each area of your life decluttered. While it isn’t the easiest thing to do, it is well worth it and something you should try to do regularly.
[By now, if you may caught on to my practice as a coach and healer. I went through my own declutter hell – I literally stood and sobbed while tossing over 100 tshirts into a donation bag – and I still had 50 or so left that I couldn’t let go of. I know, from a deep personal level, what it means not to be able to let go of “stuff.” I have empathy and listening skills, and the techniques that can help lessen your attachment to the things in your life that need to go. Contact me for an appointment, and we’ll lighten your load!]