“Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” ~ Confucius
We have all read or heard about the benefits and virtues of living a simple life. You might even be able to search back in the archives of your memory and recall a time when your own life was, indeed, simpler than it is today. But add a career, a relationship, plus a kid or two, and boom, life gets complicated. How you handle a complicated life, is a choice.
Living a complex life with many moving pieces has become our cultural norm. It seems stress has become synonymous with success, and exhaustion is an expected byproduct of working hard. When extreme busyness is worn as a badge of honor, and feeling overwhelmed is the rule rather than the exception, something is wrong.
What is the point of hard work, a full schedule, and a fat bank account if it is devoid of joy? Is that really Success?
To be truly successful you must be enjoying the journey. I have had many clients who seemed to have it all; big house, beautiful family, career success and lots of money, yet they themselves were miserable. Becoming successful is a process, but if the process sucks, so might the final destination. It’s important to bring joy to the process so the journey is as amazing as the destination. You must be willing to consider that…Success can be Simple.
So in the spirit of creating success that flows with ease and grace, below are 7 ways to Simplify Success. Enjoy the process, and reap the benefits.
1. Say No
No is NOT a four letter word. In fact saying No, can be the door to more authentic relationships and less chaos. Over committing and saying yes when you really want to say no, is stressful and creates resentment. Decide what you can do with love in your heart and everything else gets a ‘No Thank You!’ You cannot please everyone. It’s a relief to stop trying.
Meditation is one of the most powerful tools to simplifying your life because it slows down an overactive, restless mind. A daily practice creates a place of stillness and silence within you; a reserve of calm that you can tap into during the day. That calm can create the space to stop and reflect before automatically responding to anything. The two to three seconds of response time that my daily practice created in my life, literally changed everything. Meditation is free, requires no equipment and you can do it anywhere at anytime.
3. Cut Corners
No one can do it all. That is why no one should try. Attempting to give 100%, 100% of the time leads to stress, exhaustion and a sense of being overwhelmed. Cutting corners where you can, will buy you precious time for what is most important to you. If ordering take out once a week, frees up two hours to be with your partner or kids, it’s worth it. Obviously you can only cut corners that feel OK to you and that you can afford, I just want to inspire you to give yourself permission to not do it all perfectly, all the time. Choosing your relationships or self care is actually better for the overall quality of your life and your stress level than prefection.
4. Ask for Help
Having the Superman/ Superwoman Syndrome- doing it all on your own- can be isolating and exhausting. We all need help and asking for it is an important part of simplifying and becoming joyfully successful.
5. Create a Tribe
Creating a support system is one of the easiest ways to simplify. A tribe is a network of people you can readily call on for help. This help can be in the form of favors or mutual emotional support and inspiration. Sharing joys and wins, sorrows and losses within a safe group of like minded people is freeing and healing.
In order to have an organized life, you must schedule. Scheduling is one of the top tools used to create simple success. No matter what it is, yoga, work, or a dinner date, you must schedule it. According to my pal, Marie Forleo, if it’s not on your calendar it doesn’t exist! An organized schedule cuts down on confusion, creates a sense of calm, and increases productivity. Organize. Schedule. Simplify.
7. Bring Joy to It
Regardless of what must be done, you can choose to do it joyfully. It is impossible to be bitter and grateful at the same time. Since what we focus on grows, putting your attention on all of the things that are right in your life right now, brings you more of the same. Practicing gratitude is an act of self care that really pays off. Make sure that you slow down long enough to actually count your blessings. (Put it on your calendar!)
I hope this list was helpful. I am interested in your thoughts, so please drop a comment here and share your struggle to simplify or your brilliant solutions!
I hope you have an easy breezy weekend, and as always, take care of you.
Love Love Love
*image courtesy of Niklas Morberg