Our lives are clogged up with stuff. Material things, things we don’t need or want, toxic people, people we don’t need or want. We work at jobs we hate, we live in houses that cost more than we can afford, we drive cars that are hella expensive to maintain and we have more pairs of shoes than we can shake a stick at. Do you want to simplify your life but are clueless as to where to even begin with that? We all want to be happy but are we getting close to achieving that goal? I doubt it.
We run around in circles frantically trying to please others, follow rules, pay bills, sneak in some enjoyment and find happiness. Somewhere. It’s chaos, it’s frantic and it’s borderline hopeless. Or maybe it’s not?
3 years ago I got rid of 95% of my stuff, packed two suitcases and bought a one way ticket to Guatemala. I knew I wanted a better and happier life and I also knew I had to simply my life. It was starting to take its toll on me. The stuff, the drama, the desperate thoughts of “what’s it all for”? I knew something had to give, and give it did.
It wasn’t easy at first. The thought of even starting caused me a great deal of anxiety, truth be told. All I’ve ever known is work hard, pay bills, make everyone else happy, rinse and repeat. I didn’t know anything else and I especially didn’t know what true happiness really was (except the day my son was born).
Be prepared because if you want to simplify your life it can be done in these 4 simple steps, it’s the emotions that may get in the way.
The seed was planted and it was time to start watering it.
Time to simplify your life
And so it started. I didn’t know how to be happy but I was ready willing and able to find out. Here are the 5 things I did that propelled me into a life of crazy ridiculous joy. I hope they help you too!
Dump toxic people
Toxic people cause stress and drama. They are no good to you. They will only cause you grief. Get rid of them. If you can’t get rid of them (maybe a family member or co worker?) then limit your interaction with them or put up a toxic people barrier. Yes that’s a thing. Shield yourself from them. Don’t let them enter your energy field. You can do that!
The more you interact with toxic people, the more you become like them (yup it’s true) and the less you’ll be happy. Don’t you want to be happy? Don’t you want to simplify your life? Start by reducing the toxicity.
Get rid of stuff
How much clutter do you have kicking around your house that you have absolutely no use for? Like that storage room you have, you know the one where the door stays closed all the time because it’s a nightmare in there. Yup. That room.When was the last time you opened the door, not to throw more crap in there but to actually analyze it and figure out what to do with it?
Clutter causes stress and chaos in your life. Trust me on that. I know decluttering can sometimes cause extreme anxiety so start small. One corner of the room at a time. Take a couple of hours, set a timer if you wish, and start. The more you declutter, the more liberated you feel and the easier you will find it to do more and to simplify your life this way. You’ll see.
On a side note, this could be a great way to make some extra fun cash too! Go through your stuff, see what you don’t want anymore and sell it!! Some people make thousands of dollars on garage sales! Try it.
Start saying no
It really truly is ok to say no to people who ask for favours that end up sucking the life out of you. You know what I’m talking about. Learn how to say no, and mean it. Say it with a smile and don’t feel the need to have to apologize for saying no and please don’t feel guilty about saying no. I get that will be hard to do. We’re people pleasers right? We want to make everyone happy and say yes to everything. But….
You can’t and it’s not your job to make everyone happy. It’s your job to make you happy. No one else. At first saying no will feel awkward but once you get the hang of it you’ll see how fun it is to take back your power, see that this is a great way to simplify your life and people will soon learn you have boundary lines. Nothing wrong with that at all.
Take time for you and you only
Go for a walk, go down to the lake, take yourself on a picnic or a movie date. Unplug your electronics for a couple of hours (or maybe even a full day if you’re feeling ballsy). Turn on some zen music, put up a do not disturb sign on the door and just be with you!! Have a nice long bubble bath, take a book in there with you, pour yourself your favourite beverage and chill out.
When was the last time you practiced some mindfulness? There is much to be said about taking some alone time. We don’t do it enough. We fill our calendars with events and then fall into bed at midnight exhausted and frustrated because our whole day was spent running around like a squirrel looking for nuts.
We get too wrapped up in people, drama and stuff that we forget one important thing; this is your life. You deserve to be happy. If you want to simply your life and be happy, it’s up to you to do it.
Take that step to change your life!
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