5 tips to simplify your life and focus on what really matters

As we move through the small (and large) decisions that make up our lives, many of us don’t even realize that simplicity is a goal. This is often because as we go forward we tend to acquire far more than we discard, whether that means more people more things or more responsibilities.

But the importance of streamlining and simplifying our daily lives grows as life becomes more complex. By making simple choices and abiding by the ramifications of our choices, we are able to become more mindful, more positive and stay focused on what really matters.

Check out our list and discover how you can stop, prioritize and refocus your personal and professional life in 2018.

Invest in reflection

Take a few minutes towards the end of your day to go back over your thoughts and interactions.

Take a couple of hours at the end of your week to evaluate how you use your time, how you have treated your family or coworkers and how you are treating yourself.

Take a day at the end of the month for yourself where you just sit and get quiet. Let your thoughts come and go and see what you may be missing amidst the noise.

Take a weekend at the end of the year to focus on you. Take the time somewhere special to you. Somewhere quiet, where you can reconnect and reflect in peace and solitude.

Clarify your goals

Clarify your goals and prioritize activities that are in line with these goals. The act of making mindful decisions about how and whom you choose to spend your time with makes it easier to focus your energy and not waste time on life choices that aren’t serving your wellbeing.

This doesn’t need to feel like a selfish action. There is no reason that being giving of your time towards others shouldn’t be a very healthy thing to do.

All you need to establish is that you are spending your time in the right ways, and not frittering it away. There is nothing wrong with knowing your own value.

Another great way to clarify your thoughts is through writing it all down. Simply keep a pad and a pen beside your bed and each morning (as soon as you wake up), write three pages of stream of consciousness. No need to think about what you’re writing; just let the pen start moving. You might be amazed by what you discover and how your creativity blossoms if you turn it into a habit.

Focus on what you can control

Focus on the aspects of your life that you can control instead of wasting time and energy on areas where you can’t have an impact. There’s no point on focusing on how you think things should be instead of how they really are.

Focus on reality and feel empowered, don’t focus on a fictional version of reality and feel frustrated. Of course, these things are easier said than done, but one effective tool we can use is meditation.

The simple act of sitting mindfully for 15 minutes a day can have a profound effect on your mental and physical wellbeing and help ensure that you aren’t overvaluing what you are not and undervaluing what you are.

Give yourself credit

Give yourself credit for all the things you’ve done instead of focusing on what you still have to do.

By all means have a ‘to do list’ but why not have a ‘done list’ too! This will not only help give you a healthier sense of perspective but it will also motivate you to keep on moving until all your ‘to do’s’ are ‘dones’ too.

We find great satisfaction in crossing things off our life lists, so make sure you take the same satisfaction in listing all the things that you are on top of… And don’t be so hard on yourself.

Slow down

Speed doesn’t necessarily denote urgency.  In a world of instant technology connecting us to all kinds of different notifications and stimulus, it sometimes feels that things aren’t just fast… They’re sudden.

But we don’t have to react immediately and treat every little thing as urgent.  Instant communication is one thing but instant reaction is another.

Take the time to slow down and treat digital detox as a regular part of your day-to-day. Put your phone in a cupboard if you can and let your mind slow down and digest the world at its own pace and make life a whole lot simpler.

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