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How many times do you answer "How are you?," with "Busy?"
Today our society is so overwhelmed with work and doing so much stuff, that we have forgotten how to answer a simple question.
But it honestly doesn't need to be this way. There's so much room to simplify our lives if we're willing to spend a little time letting go, reducing, and fine-tuning everyday tasks!
Simplifying your home+life will give you more time
- "Me" time
- Time for personal hobbies
- Time for my loved ones
- Time to lay in bed five minutes longer just because you can
- Reduces anxiety!
Below are some suggestions to simplify your life, give them a try and see if you can get some time back in your day for the important stuff.
1) Your Bed
Look at your bed. How many sheets and warm blankets do you have?
The 2017 HGTV Dream home has seven pillows, and it probably has five layers of sheets. The more pillows and sheets you have the longer it takes to make your bed.
When it takes a lot of time to make your bed, you will likely not make it daily, and this will cause stress!
How long does it take you to pick an outfit in the morning?
What if you reduced your wardrobe to only the things you loved wearing and also looked good on you?
You might reduce your wardrobe by 75% as I did, and also save about 20 minutes every morning!
ACTION: First donate or sell all the clothes you no longer wear. Separate the remaining articles by the time of year, and store what's not in season. Turn your hangers backward and if you haven't worn an item by the end of the season, donate them.
Need some inspiration on reducing your wardrobe? Read about Courtney Carver's Project 333!
In Australia, my boyfriend and I had to wash our dishes by hand. Although we only had a dish set of four, our sink was always filling up.
Tired of plates piling up, we stored two sets in the cupboard. Only having one set for each of us kept our kitchen tidy. We had to wash our plates after every meal if we wanted to eat.
Problem solved. No more accumulating dirty dishes. Hurray!
When we had guests, we got the extra plates out and put them away when they left.
ACTION: Keep one of everything for the people in your household. Put everything else away and see how that works. Experiment to see what works best for your family.
Who doesn't have a box full of cables? Let's be honest; we probably don't know what they are for or why we keep them.
I sure as heck didn't! But there they were gathering dust and causing headaches when I needed to find a spare ethernet cable.
ACTION: Take stock of your current wires. Organize and label the wires you need, donate or recycle the ones you don't need.
5) Cleaning Products
But keeping a full stock of the concentrate all purpose liquid, and tons of other products I never use just takes up space.
ACTION: Remove all of your old cleaning products and keep what you use. Space + time saver!
Meal planning is exhausting. It's not just meal planning; it's everything about cooking!
- List making
- Grocery shopping
- Washing Dishes
Or if I do have a little more time on my hands I turn to Amazon Fresh for groceries delivered to my door. Amazon delivery is a great alternative to avoid holiday shopping craziness during the holidays.
When I'm not in the mood for Blue Apron, I get help with meal planning. RealPlans is a website and an app that creates a meal plan plus a grocery list for you. They also tailor meals based on diet and what’s currently in season. I used this in Australia, and it customized the groceries to the local produce!
I’ve used all of these options, and I love them! It can save you money by only buying what you need and not being persuaded by other things in the store, and also it saves you time. Taking time to meal plan or go to the grocery store can take hours.
ACTION: Think about what will give you the most time back into your day. And leverage whatever service you need to eat healthier without all of the hassles.
The pantry can turn into the Bermuda Triangle.
For some reason when I look into the pantry to find rigatoni, I can't see it. Sometimes I can’t see the rice that’s right in front of my face, but my boyfriend can, and it's
ACTION: Remove all the expired or unused. Organize the rest, so it's easy for you to cook in the future.
8) Work Out Routine
I used to give myself a mental beating because I didn’t have time for an hour work out.
Doctors have said we only need 20 minutes of moderate exercise a day. So why was I Torturing myself?
That’s why I love the Kayla Itsines workout program. In 28 Minutes, (not including warm up and cool down) I'm done!
ACTION: Choose a physical activity that fits within your day and makes you feel like you have broken a sweat.
9) What you listen to or Read
I am a podcast hoarder. I Love NPR! (NPR You are My Boo!)
But sometimes I get overwhelmed by all the podcasts that are accumulating on my phone, and then I think about the books I have yet to read.
I had to give myself the freedom to delete whatever I didn’t listen to and start fresh when I could.
Also, I had to forgive myself for not liking a book. I tried my very hardest to read Life of Pi, but I couldn’t get into it. I tried and tried again, but I had to stop kicking my ass and move on to the next one!
ACTION: Give yourself permission to not listen to a podcast or donate an unread book!
10) Phone Apps
How many apps are too many? How much time are you spending on these apps?
ACTION 1: Go through your apps and delete anything you haven’t used in the last six months
ACTION 2: Check which app is taking up majority of your time.
Here is a picture of my battery usage in the last 24 hours. Facebook takes up 33%. If an iPhone7 battery is meant to last 12 hours a day, that means I’ve spent four hours on Facebook in the last 24 hours.
The time that would have been better used writing this post!
iPhone & Android users go to your settings>battery>each app will have a percentage next to it based on battery usage.
Time for what you love
Now that you have read this list, I hope you can adopt some of these tips to simplify and create more time in your life. Use that time to do something you love!
- Plan your dream vacation!
- Follow your passion!
- Or just sleep
Whatever it is, I hope the next time someone asks "How are you?" You can reply with "Fantastic!"
Do you think you can make time to simplify your life with these tips? Or do you have any tips to add? Let me know in the comments!
Please note, throughout this blog post I have used affiliate links. This means I may receive a commission if you click on and purchase, but this does not affect the price you pay.