My last post, A Simpler Life – Part 1, got more comments and shares than anything I’ve posted in a while. Apparently, a lot of you could relate!
The author, Richard Bach, said “We teach best what we most need to learn.” I think that’s definitely true for me in this case.
Because there’s so much to say on this subject and because my last post resonated so deeply, I’m continuing here. Some of the ideas I’m sharing are things I’ve incorporated into my own life, and some I’m still working on. Maybe one or two will work for you to try.
- Start with a small space when you’re trying to organize. I took a little time the other day and organized two desk drawers – cleaned out what I didn’t need and organized the rest. Took less than 10 minutes and it was so satisfying!
- Put the kibosh on multitasking. This used to be a hard one for me until I learned that the brain actually can’t do two things at one time. Research in neuroscience shows that when we think we are multitasking – doing two or more things at once – we are not giving each task our full attention. What is really going on is that we are shifting our focus from one thing to another with incredible speed. Research shows that multitasking actually splits the brain, by dedicating one-half of it to each task, reducing performance and efficiency. Knowing this made me really think about how I want to show up for things – all there or half there? Not to mention that it’s less straining and more enjoyable to just focus on one thing at a time.
- One focused hour. Lots of us wish there were more hours in the day to do the things we love or aspire to. A mentor shared this idea with me some years ago and I continue to use it to this day. Blocking out one focused hour a day to concentrate – without disruption or distraction – can help us to get more done in a short period of time than we realize. I’ve used this idea to complete projects, courses, papers, you name it. The key is your focus – you have to manage distractions. Close your door, turn off your phone and other notifications, let others know you’ll get back to them later. If you can harness just one focused hour a day for whatever is important to you, you won’t believe how much you can accomplish and, before you know it, you’ve completed that book or project you’ve been putting off because you “don’t have the time.
- Take a yoga, tai chi or mindfulness meditation class. I’ve been taking a weekly yoga class for as long as I can remember and there are definitely those days when I think I just don’t have the time. The reality is that the benefits I get from that hour and a half – improved focus, stress relief, the practice of being in the moment, a more flexible and balanced body – outweigh the amount of time it takes. Mindfulness meditation and tai chi both involve quieting the mind and using deep breathing to regulate our minds and bodies are other practices that have similar benefits and also teach us to live in the moment.
- Lay out your clothes for the day the night before. This is not only a great time saver when you’re getting ready to leave for your day, it eliminates having to deal with unexpected clothing mishaps – a missing button or unexpected weather – at the last minute. I’ve been doing this forever and can attest to how it simplifies getting ready.
I’m curious to know if you try out one of these and find it helpful, so leave a comment below or send me a note – I only want to send you ideas that add to your life and wellbeing!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Coaches Action Step:
Pick one of these ideas and put it to use, and see how it impacts your life. And don’t forget to let me know!