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Seven Ways to Simplify Your Life…
From:
Marsha Egan, CSP - Workplace Productivity Coach and E-mail Expert Marsha Egan, CSP - Workplace Productivity Coach and E-mail Expert
For Immediate Release:
Dateline: Nantucket , MA
Thursday, September 10, 2020

 

Life seems more complex and overwhelming these days. At our most recent Coaching at The Corner virtual discussion, we talked about 7 ways to make our lives simpler.

It was interesting to note that when we described our concept of simplifying, the words “de-clutter” and “do less” were used frequently. According to the dictionary  “to simplify something is to make it less complex and easier to do or to understand. “ There again is the concept of subtraction, clarification, and consolidation.

In my view, the art of simplification is the art of making things more clear. I like to think of it as decluttering. Here are the 7 ways we discussed that we can use the concept of decluttering to help simplify our lives.

Mind Clutter: When our brain is cluttered with too many thoughts, it is more difficult to be clear on our task at hand. Giving that brain a break can be a key to simplifying your life. By allowing your brain to go blank periodically, you can give it space for creativity, calm, and clarity. Writing things down to take the pressure off your need to remember too much can help you simplify your brain clutter. Giving yourself permission to enjoy a walk or listen to music on your drive to work, without going through task lists can simplify your mind clutter.

Physical Clutter: The more cluttered your home, workspace, car, family space, the more distractions, and the more visual complexity you may have to handle. Open space can be freeing and can promote clarity of thought and action. One of the exercises I share with my coaching clients is a game to reach 100 points in 10 days. Each time you throw something away or put it in the donate pile, you give yourself a point. Our Coaching at The Corner group liked this idea so much that they challenged each other to see who would have the most points by our next discussion.

Calendar Clutter: Many of us have tendencies to fill every open space in our calendars. I call this “calendar clutter.” By trying to do too much too quickly, we can be putting pressure on ourselves that isn’t absolutely necessary. Underestimating the amount of time something will take can create stress. I like to suggest that it is okay to have white space on your calendar, and to plan for that white-space to not be compromised. It is also possible to schedule things out into the next week or month; not everything has to be done today or this week

“Yes” Clutter: One strategy for simplifying is to learn to say no more often. I call our tendency to agree to help even when it gets in the way of our own personal goals “yes – clutter” because we are cluttering our daily lives doing things for others at our own expense. Not to say that helping others is a negative, we just need to fit it into our overall plan.

Virtual Clutter: Just as with physical clutter, our days are filled with the virtual clutter of texts, email, social media, and various other Internet related distractions. By consolidating and minimizing screen time and the interruptions that all this technology creates, we can focus more on the task at hand. I challenged our group to take notice of what technological interrupters distract the most and make a plan to reduce those distractions. As an example, turning off your phone, minimizing your email when you’re working on a project, or selecting only one social media platform to follow rather than multiple streams can cut down your virtual clutter.

People Clutter: There are people in our lives who add to the complexity of our lives. Some are simple time wasters; others can be more toxic and can impact your sense of well-being. By setting boundaries that can minimize the emotional drain, you can add to the simplification of your life.

Priority Clutter: Someone once told me that when everything is a priority, nothing is a priority. And I believe this is true. For something to be a real priority, we need to move it to the top of the list and focus on it without thinking about those other tasks that are pulling at you. Having too many priorities is what I call “priority clutter” and can be a source of stress and complexity. By deciding your greatest priority, and giving it 100% focus, you have simplified your use of time.

These 7 strategies have potential to help you simplify your days, weeks, and months. I call it the art of subtraction. Many times, we add things to our lives without discarding others, whether it is thoughts, tasks, clothing, duties,  projects or people. Simplifying means letting things go or spreading things out.

Admittedly, we have just touched the surface on these seven strategies. I like to challenge my clients to choose one area of focus as a start. There are links throughout this post for deeper consideration. Most importantly, it is useful to “just start.”

Time to de-clutter. Which of these will be your focus?

About Marsha Egan, CPCU, CSP, PCC, ICF-Certified CoachMarsha Egan, is CEO of the Egan Group, Inc., Nantucket MA and an internationally recognized professional speaker. She is a leading authority on email productivity. Her acclaimed ?12 Step Program for E-Mail E-ddiction? received international attention, being featured on ABC Nightly News, Fox News, and newspapers across the globe. In early 2009, the program was adapted into a book, Inbox Detox and the Habit of E-mail Excellence (Acanthus 2009 - http://InboxDetox.com/book) Marsha works with forward-thinking organizations that want to create a profit-rich and productive email culture. Marsha was named one of Pennsylvania?s Top 50 Women in Business in 2006.
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Name: Marsha Egan, CPCU, PCC
Title: CEO
Group: InboxDetox.com, a division of The Egan Group, Inc.
Dateline: Nantucket, MA United States
Direct Phone: 610-777-3795
Main Phone: 877-749-4036
Cell Phone: 610-780-1640
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