Simplify Your Life: 7 Tips for Mindful Living


August 1-8 is “Simplify Your Life Week.” In this era of distraction and consumerism, it’s easy for us to lose focus on the most important things in our lives. We’ve compiled a list of seven things you can do to minimize distraction and disorder in your life.

  1. Make a list of the 5-10 things that are most important to in your life. Some examples include family, friends, jobs, and hobbies.
  1. Think about the 5-10 things you spend the most time doing. Ask yourself how many of these things are also on your first list. Try to focus on and prioritize these things over the other things you spend your time on.
  1. Be able to say no. Acknowledge your limits. Sometimes we have to put ourselves above others. Saying “yes” every time someone asks you to do something can cause you to take on more responsibility than you can manage. In the words of Dr. Raj, “A balanced life is the ultimate goal, and when we overextend ourselves, imbalance becomes inevitable.”
  1. De-clutter. Spend time going through your house and getting rid of old things you no longer want or need. Donate it, throw it out, or sell it. Especially focus on the spaces you spend the most time in, like your desk and bedroom. De-clutter your purse and your e-mail inbox as well.
  1. Be present in the moment. Don’t fret over the past or the future. Focus on the present and the now. Stressing over things that have happened and may happen in the future complicates our lives. Making a conscious effort to focus only on the current moment makes it easier both to concentrate and to relax.
  1. Try to focus on one project at a time. Instead of multi-tasking, which causes us to lose focus on the tasks at hand by switching back and forth, try single-tasking. Single-task by completing one task at a time and then moving to the next.
  1. Spend time with the people who make you happy. Consider the people you spend the most time with. Which of these people make you feel good about yourself? Make an effort to dedicate more time to these people and less time to those who make you feel bad about yourself or you aren’t particularly fond of.

Overall, try to live life by the motto, “quality over quantity.” Commit to doing the best you can at the things that are important to you and don’t waste time on the other things.

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