Today, most folks want to find ways to simplify their lives or manage their time better. Use this simple question to help you make decisions.
The basic rule for a simple life is to keep everything you need or love and get rid of the rest. That applies to staff as well as relationships.
One of the two biggest stumbling blocks people trip over in a quest for simplicity is to look at an object, an activity, or a relationship and be unable to eliminate it from their life because “it (or they) is too good to throw away.” But unfortunately, very few of the things you will eliminate from your home, schedule, or list of relationships will be tossed in the dust bin.
The second most significant obstacle to simplifying your life is a lack of commitment. When you make a committed choice to keep one thing over another, Once decided, it is no longer a significant concern. You have committed to something and rejected every other option. Unfortunately, people who fail to achieve their choices put that old coat, the new golf clubs, or the second vacuum cleaner in their bedroom closet “just in case.” That is, they did not choose at all.”
Simplifying your life needs decision-making and action. In most cases, a decision not to continue to own, participate, or relationship is not an activity of judgment but setting priorities. For example, that pair of shoes you never wear may still have a great deal of utility and service yet to give – just not to you. Likewise, the fish that still live in your son’s bedroom (even though he just graduated college) are not worthless creatures, but unless you need or love them, perhaps it is time to send them on to a better home than yours.
A Word About Stuff
Excess stuff produces far more negatives in your life than you may realize.
- Time to care for it
- Space to store it
- Guilt for not using it
- Additional choices that complicate other areas of your life (clothes, purses)
- Money wasted itself, room to keep it and to maintain it
A Word About Relationships
The time you spend with someone you don’t need or love takes time away from someone you do need or love. So don’t start up a new friendship if you don’t have time to spend with your new friend. We all have dozens of acquaintances, but there can be no friendship without making time for your friend.
If your relationship is over, don’t keep making promises you can’t follow. It isn’t fair to your family, new friends, or old ones. Trying to maintain too many relationships results in hurt feelings guilt and eventually leaves you with a bunch of folks you know but none that you love who love you back.
Love It, Need It – Keep It
Examine your time and money use. What stuff takes up space on your shelves, in your drawers, and in your closets? Who are you trying to keep up within the family and in your circle of friends? Whether animal, vegetable, or mineral, this simple question applies.
For each item or relationship, ask, “Do I love it or need it?” If the answer is no, you must decide and be committed to sticking with it. Is this an easy process? Unfortunately, no. But it is a simple one.