From multitasking to mobile phones to social media and more, we live in a world where we are encouraged to keep trying to cram more into every hour of every day. Excess is not about too many material items but is a mindset as well, and the opportunities and demands that you face every day can wear you down to exhaustion. It seems like simplifying your life would be a good idea, but who has the time? The tips below can help you get started.
What does simplicity mean to you? Pay special attention to the end of that sentence, “to you”, because the answer will be different for everyone. You might have a friend who gives away every book that she finishes on the grounds that she prefers a simpler lifestyle without all those books around her. If this doesn’t appeal to you because you love books, you don’t have to do the same. Maybe simplifying for you means moving to the country and living closer to nature. Or perhaps it means creating a ritual of finding ways to celebrate at the end of the week that help you transition from your work self to your free time self. Think about your values and how you can better live in alignment with them by adding things of true value and stripping out what you can in your life.
Start Creating Passive Income
One of the big barriers you might face in trying to simplify your life is that your working life may not be very simple. That’s not a problem if you love what you do, but a big step many people take when they start to think about how to pursue a less complicated way of living is shifting from active to passive income. The basic difference is that with a passive income, you don’t do much to earn the money.
Instead, you set something in motion that can generate income for you, such as a free eBook download online. Another way to do this is by investing. People often assume that investing is risky, but this doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, if you want to get into real estate investing, you can purchase shares rather than an entire property. With REIT tax advantages, you might not have to pay corporate income tax on these properties. Over time, your passive income from this and other ventures could partly or fully replace your regular income.
You may encounter a surprising amount of resistance to the idea that you’re trying to simplify your life, especially if you are doing something eccentric such as getting rid of your smartphone. The world can seem to be designed to complicate everything, but stick to your guns and keep moving ahead in the way that suits you best.
Another important element of simplifying things is letting go of the idea that you can’t have, do or be everything. Learning to say no is powerful, but unfortunately, over the short run, you might wish you could unlearn it since you are probably giving up some things that you enjoy. That you are doing so isn’t a sign that your simplicity project has failed. It is a necessary step in streamlining and prioritizing your life so that only the most important activities are left.