Written by: Tiffany Ford, MA, LPC, NCC
I recently saw something on social media that touted “National Simplify Your Life Week.” Obviously this type of thing caught my attention so I did some digging on the internet and discovered “Simplify Your Life Week” is celebrated throughout the first week of August. Once I got over the fact that I’ve never been aware that a whole week is dedicated (even “celebrated”) to simplifying one’s life–I decided to embrace the spirit of simplicity this week! Simplify Your Life Week (SYLW) presents a great excuse to de-clutter our living space, work space and even our minds and bodies.
I am sure I’m not alone–many of us spend a considerable amount of time drudging through physical and mental ‘clutter.’ It consumes our time and saps our energy. All of that drained energy amounts to increased strain on resources and, ultimately, additional stress.
When we are mentally unable to manage the clutter in our lives, the accompanying overwhelming feelings work to trigger the body’s stress response – resulting in physical symptoms such as headaches and migraines, lethargy and irritability. We also become less capable of making discerning decisions from a prognostic or judicious state of mind and are much more likely to create additional problems for ourselves.
So, in the spirit of SYLW and my never-ending devotion to improving mental wellness–here are some ways we can start to simplify our lives–this week and beyond!
Tips for Simplifying Your Life
(The 4 D’s)
Is your house or office full of clutter? Try the KonMari Method and determine which items in your life bring you joy and which ones don’t. Once you toss out the latter, you can enjoy the charming appeal of a tidy home or office and the ensuing calm and stress-free mental outlook..
DECOMPLICATE YOUR SCHEDULE & LIFESTYLE
Don’t overcommit to more undertakings than you can uncomplicatedly manage
Go through your mail and or paperwork daily – don’t let it stack up!
Avoid agitations and limit the time you spend on social media and news sites–be mindful of the negativity out there!
Prepare for each week and day with a to-do list, and do as much prep as you can the night before
DOTE UPON YOUR SOUL
Focus on those you love and spend time developing the relationships you have with those you really care about and who care about you
Be content with what you have in life instead of pursuing material possessions
Do something you don’t normally do! Turn off your phone and go for a walk or a picnic, drive to the beach. Take a day off and simply enjoy being
DON’T NEGLECT YOUR HEALTH
Consider going on a bit of a detox. Reduce the amount of alcohol you drink and the sugar and fat you consume and keep hydrated. Every day, millions of cells in our bodies die and are replaced by new ones. What we “feed” those new cells can make all the difference in our health
Some Final Thoughts:
If simplicity can alleviate stress, isn’t it worth taking a little time to preemptively reduce the clutter of our homes, our schedules, our bodies and our minds? Try something new this week. Celebrate SYLW by letting go of whatever is unessential in your life…