Life has always been and will always be a little complicated. Some people have it worse than others but we all struggle with something. It might be what to eat, the job we have, how to meet our deadlines, or even how to keep a roof over our heads.
The goal here isn’t to solve those problems, but to make life around them simpler, thereby making it easier to deal with them. Here are ten ways that everyone can use to make life just a little bit simpler, easier.
1. Smile Often
I’ve talked about the One Smile Movement in the past. Go read it, try it. It’s amazing what helping someone else can do for your own mood.
In short, try to help someone smile once a day. It could just be holding the door for a busy person or helping your neighbor carry groceries up to their flat. It could be giving blood or donating food to a shelter. When you help others, they usually smile. Smiles are contagious and helping others gives a good warm feeling.
Try to smile at people as they pass when your running or if they’re letting you cross the street. Smiling can actually make you happier (unfortunately it can’t solve everything).
Don’t believe me? Read this.
2. Stick to a Meal Plan & Shop Monthly
In our house is a board on the freezer. It has what we eat each week.
In a small box it says:
- Meat Free Monday
- Taco Tuesday
- Italian Wednesday
- Soup Thursday
- Meat Free Friday
- Comfort Food Saturday
- Breakfast for Dinner Sunday
In a larger part it says what we are actually having that month. I say month because we might have nachos every Tuesday for one month then enchiladas every Tuesday for the next month. The day’s theme doesn’t change but the meal does, it adds variety.
This is simple, we save money on groceries and we always know what’s for dinner. It saves time and creates less stress. Shopping only once a month took time, but now we spend less and waist less time at the store each week. Try this yourself, see how it works for you.
It seems like adding something to an already busy schedule would not make life simpler but hear me out. Recently MadMan and I have been using our Chrome Cast to work out to 30-minute dance or cardio workouts on YouTube.
Working out releases happy drugs (and gets you in better shape.) If you can’t do 30, there are many 20, 10, and even 5-minute workouts that you can do right when you get up, on lunch break, or at night.
A few of my favorite channels are PopFitness and BeFit try them out and see what you think.
4. Embrace Less
We knew it was coming. The talk on minimalism. I used to have tons of clothes, tons of books, tons of electronics, and just tons of stuff. Now, I have a lot less, so does MadMan. When I got into the closet I grab a pair of jeans (from a stack of 4) and a shirt (from a selection of about 10 to 15.) I have 4 pairs of shoes and very few accessories. Want to do this yourself? Begin here.
You can take this to every part of your life, like the food options, your work desk, your living room too. Read here for one look at why limiting the amount of decisions you make a day is helpful. See below for 90% of my wardrobe in 9 photos.
5. Stop Trying for Perfection & Pleasing Everyone
Life isn’t perfect, and someone will always be mad at you for something. Trying to make everyone happy is just going to make you miserable Do your best and make sure you are happy. Helping others is something I believe in, but not to the detriment of your own life. The same can be said for doing your best.
6. Ask for Help
This is something most people have a problem with, myself included. We like to feel like we can do everything on our own. Like we don’t need anyone around to help us. Sometimes I feel this might be a product of being an only child (anyone else feel that way?)
Yet, in the end, no matter the reason, we do need help. I needed help wedding planning, cleaning the house, training MadDogge, and more. Now, rather than try to do it myself till I’m upset, I ask for help and you should too. Asking for help makes your goals less stressful and easier to get to, simplifying your life.
Sometimes the best thing to do then you are overworked and stressed is to breathe. Take a look at being mindful if you want to go a step further.
To being, just sit down, close your eyes, and take five minutes to breathe. Even if you are on a deadline, stressing will hurt you more than taking a break in the long run.
8. Batches over Multi-Tasking
Don’t multi-task, contrary to what many think (myself at one time) it’s not productive or a good thing to be able to do. Don’t trust me? Read here.
Rather than multi-task, batch. Take all the bills you need to pay and pay them. Take all the errands you need to run this week and do it on one day. Don’t try to talk on the phone, walk the dog, and get the mail at the same time. Walk to dog to the mail then come back and make all the phone calls you need to.
9. Enjoy the Simple Things
A glass of water on a hot day.
A walk around your building during a break.
A favorite song in the car.
A quiet moment before going to sleep.
A hug from your best friend.
You don’t have to look far to find things to be happy about. Just look at the things we all take for granted. Take a moment to appreciate the simplicity and happiness that is a hog from your family or a coffee when you are tired.
10. Ask if it Really Matters
If this won’t matter 5 or even 2 years from now, why is it a big deal now? If you know that this won’t be a big deal in the long run, take a moment, breathe, then do your best. After all, stressing won’t make you better than your best.
Look at it this way as well… Even if it will affect you in the future, if it has to be done, stressing can make it go worse. Just do you best.
Do your best.
That’s the best you can do.
That’s the best thing to do.
Do your best. Be Happy.
It might be harder said than done, but eventually we might get there.