4 Ways to Start Living Simply Today


1. Meditate

Clear your mind. Think about how busy your schedule can get or disorganized your office desk can become. Clutter in any form doesn't on its own; we are in control of what happens to our schedules and spaces. We are faced with such subtle decisions everyday that can seem like the decisions aren't really there, like leaving the coffee mug on the counter to be washed later.

If we allow our minds to become cluttered with thoughts, schedules, tasks, conversations, and endless things to think about, then we will miss the small possibilities in our lives. When we take the time to slow down, even just for 5 minutes, then we can refocus our attention, reevaluate what is important, and start making decisions that will lead to a healthier, more organized life.

2. Form a Healthy Habit

Set out to learn or do one thing this week or this month. It could be anything, such as exercising more often, eating better food, or starting a garden. Living a simple lifestyle should contain within it only essential and healthy habits. Otherwise, caring for our body becomes more difficult, our minds feel stressed and confused, and the places we spend time in the most fill with clutter. 

3. Kick an Unhealthy Habit 

As you form a healthy habit, abandon an unhealthy one. More often than not healthy habits have evil twin counterparts. These twin counterparts can be a do/don't situation or a left/right situation.

Do/Don't Situation

It is inevitable that if you cook your own food at home, then you will have to dishes. Which is fine really, they're just dishes. But some days you might not feel like doing the dishes right away and overtime, if you keep letting yourself not do the dishes after enjoying your meal, then the sink could fill up to the brim. (I'm thinking back to my college days). We can either choose to do the dishes or not to do  them.

As time passes, our brain creates the healthy "Do Habit" or the less healthy "Don't Habit".  In this situation, kicking the habit of not doing something forms the habit of doing something. 

Left/Right Situation

Sometimes we are already doing something for a purpose, but the action is unhealthy. We can't just not do it, because we might need to fulfill the action's purpose.  So, instead of changing the don't into a do (which is more like an on/off switch), we need to change directions, like going from left to right. For example, someone might be smoking cigarettes to relieve stress. Although the habit might be working, it is not healthy in the long-term.

A change of direction could be yoga and meditation which fulfill the same purpose, but are proven to be much healthier. We form the new habit of meditation and kick the old habit of smoking by choosing one direction over the other.

4. Find a Routine  

Try starting the day out with a period of meditation. It could be first thing in the morning or while you eat breakfast. Find an amount of time, maybe 5 minutes or so, to allow yourself to just be aware. Doing this will promote a sense of clarity for the rest of your day. 

During an average work day, a morning routine gets us started on the right foot. As the work day progresses routines can give you space to work on your habits. Sticking to a routine grounds us and aids in the process of forming healthy habits. One weekends, take a break from the routine and find healthy ways to enjoy the day.