“Nature is pleased with simplicity. And nature is no dummy”
- Isaac Newton
The world has become a lot more connected, and therefore, much more cluttered and complicated over the past fifty years. For the over forty crowd, you may remember a simpler time where we were not constantly connected to others through our digital devices. Due to the ability to get more done, brought on to us by the information age, many people struggle to organize and live their lives in a way where they do not feel overwhelmed or stretched too thin by their commitments and responsibilities.
I frequently speak with clients who are unable to turn down the water pressure on the firehose of life they seem to be drinking out of every day. Career. Kids. Spouse. Friends. To-do list. For some people, there never seems to be enough hours in the day to attend to their responsibilities while maintaining their sanity and energy levels at the same time. It can be quite the delicate balancing act. The problem I have noticed is some people will pile more things on their plate when it's already crowded, or have trouble saying "no" to others or themselves when their plate is already full. This is when overwhelm can set in.
One of the very best ways to avoid the feeling of being overwhelmed and spread too thin is to prioritize and minimize our responsibilities and commitments. When I say minimize, I do not necessarily mean ignoring anything. It may mean delegating. It may involve setting boundaries with loved ones or ourselves. It might mean spending less time overanalyzing and more time getting stuff done. Simplifying should absolutely include addressing the mental and physical clutter in our lives. The less clutter, the less complicated our lives can become.
Are there any areas in your life that feel more complicated than they need to be? Do a quick check-in to make sure you are not being stretched too thin or overwhelmed by your responsibilities and commitments. We all have a limited capacity for how much we are able to manage in our lives. It's important to make sure we are not taking on too much at once. Sometimes, slow and steady wins the race by simply taking one small step at a time. If we can learn to treat life more like a marathon, and not a sprint, we allow ourselves to live a more simplified and enjoyable life. What's the hurry?
Becoming Minimalist: The 10 Most Important Things to Simplify in Your Life
Zen Habits: 7 Little Things That Make Life Effortless
Mind Body Green: 30 Things You Can Do To Live More Simply