Ponderings on the latest simplifying fads and its potential benefits for your health
So, simple is in. First, there’s this book. Have you read it yet? I see girls around town reading it on the bus and at coffee shops. They are also reinventing their wardrobes turning them into capsules, living life in smaller spaces, and eliminating all the fuss by wearing less make-up and more monotone colors. See? It’s easy breezy these days. Just throw on a tan sweater, sandals and Chapstick and you’re good to go. But why are we doing this? It seems the act of de-cluttering our closets and our lives is popping everywhere. And it does not appear to be a trend that will soon pass.
It could be that we gravitate toward the allure of simplicity because we recognize that it has bigger implications than pure aesthetic. Sure, a pretty and more organized closet that you can open and admire (instead of losing your mind because you can’t find what you’re looking for) is desirable. But, the emotional benefits of de-cluttering your life can help you be a happier and more productive person. In the United States we often talk about our addiction to technology and the constant stimuli coming at us from all angles. It’s exhausting, but it’s also hard to avoid when technology is a pivotal part of our education, our daily work routines and our down time. Its no wonder we’re taking digital detox retreats and yearning for ways to focus on the present and feel more Zen.
So, to help with this situation, here are three quick tips to help you live more simply mentally and physically:
Simplify your brain. Too many thoughts and choices take up a lot of energy. Too many priorities and responsibilities can be overwhelming so why not find ways to calm your mind and be more productive? Try yoga, some deep belly breathing, meditation, dab some lavender oil on your pillow before you go to sleep at night, light a candle and/or journal about your day. Studies say getting your thoughts down on paper can enhance creativity and provide you with more clarity when it comes to daily life decisions. Give it a whirl and see what works for you.
Simplify your closet. The capsule wardrobe trend is on to something. After all, President Obama has someone else decide what he wears on ordinary days and for big events so he can preserve all of his energy and focus for the most pressing issues of our time, not whether or not the should wear a gingham shirt or navy blazer to the White House Correspondent’s Dinner. Find ways to reduce the amount of strife, indecision and energy you put into dressing yourself each day. If you Google “capsule wardrobe” you’ll find a million tutorials on how to do it. The gist? Fewer clothes and all things you feel good in = less stress. Great, that’s one less thing you have to worry about. Now go attack that day feeling great in your chambray romper!
Simplify your life. Simplifying your life can mean different things for different people because everyone has their own priorities. For all of us though, a universal tactic that can help you simplify your life as a whole is picking one thing to focus on at a time, slowly tack away at it until it’s complete to your satisfaction, and then move on to obligations #2. If you try to accomplish everything swirling around in your head at once you’ll become overwhelmed and have trouble even starting at all. For some, this is starting by organizing your desk and getting your paperwork in order and for others it is removing yourself from all of those pesky ads that pop up in your inbox that you never read. Get to it and I bet you’ll start to notice a difference in your concentration and productivity.