Creating a Life Free From Chaos

How to Design a Simple Lifestyle

How to Design a Simple LifestyleOne of the more difficult parts of deciding to simplify your lifestyle is figuring how to actually do it. When you’re used to living in chaos, it can be hard to figure out what simplifying even looks like. I want to share with you five steps toward designing your simplified lifestyle.

  1. Decide on your why. Before you can even begin the work of decluttering your home, cutting back on commitments, or revising your daily routine, you need to figure out why you even want to simplify in the first place. Sure, having a clean home or having free time in the evenings is great, but why do you want them? Figure out the why, and write your reasons down. Maybe it’s so you will feel comfortable inviting friends over, or maybe you want to spend more time with your kids. Whatever your reasons, write them down so you have something to look back on and motivate you when you feel tempted to go back to old ways.
  2. Make a list. Sit down with a cup of coffee and a notepad, and write down what you want to simplify. Is it your home that needs attention? Write down the rooms that need to be decluttered and any changes you want to make in them. Is your schedule crazy full? Make a list of all your current obligations, then place an X next to the ones you want to stop doing. Don’t get overwhelmed — it’s possible that your lists might be long. That’s OK! The point is to get a good idea of what needs to change, so you can make a realistic roadmap on how to do it.
  3. Decide what you want the finished product to look like. What does your ideal week look like? How do you want to spend your days? What do you want your kitchen to look like? Your bedroom? Your office? Write it down, and consider making a vision board to represent these changes so you can visualize them.
  4. Decide how you want to make those changes. Adjusting your schedule might take an afternoon of planning, followed by an afternoon of phone calls or emails to hand off the obligations you’re letting go of. Decluttering your home could involve spending a Saturday clearing out your kitchen, or an evening after work decluttering your bedroom and putting things away. An office might take a weekend or even a week. The key here isn’t how long it will take and then rushing to do it, it’s in the planning and deliberate scheduling to do the tasks needed to make the change. Write down your plans for completing the tasks on your list from 2.
  5. Get some support. Ideally, your family or whoever you share your home with should be on board with the changes you want to make. Go down your list with them, discussing why you want to simplify these areas of your life, and how it will affect them. But don’t let unsupportive spouses and unruly children deter you from your goal. You can also find support with like-minded friends, a coach, or online communities dedicated to simplifying. You want some accountability to keep you on track, as well as a place to vent when you get frustrated. 

Putting a little thought and planning into your goals will give you a great head start in actually completing them. Now it’s time for the toughest part of the whole process. It’s time to get to work!

How to Design a Simple Lifestyle