Modern*Simplicity

Creating a Life Free From Chaos

How to Kick These 3 Habits That Make You Less Productive

How to Kick These 3 Habits That Make You Less Productive

Do you ever wonder why you’re not getting anything done? You could be sabotaging your efforts with habits, not even realizing that you’re the one causing the damage. There are some habits that simply slow you down, decreasing both your accuracy and your creativity. The net effect is feelings of inadequacy and a decrease in daily happiness.

Your mindset affects your life so much — it’s imperative that you rewrite your brain with new habits designed to increase productivity and fulfillment. Here are three bad habits that may be sabotaging your attempts at a healthy, productive life.

Constantly surfing the Internet

This includes social media sites like Facebook and Instagram. It takes roughly 15 minutes of focus to fully engage in a task and get into flow, a term that describes a state of euphoric focused immersion in a task that engages you fully, leading to increased productivity and satisfaction. When you’re in a state of flow, you’re five times more productive than you otherwise would be. Shifting your focus to check social media updates, the news, email, or other web surfing, keeps you from ever reaching flow. Counteract this habit by training yourself with timers. Set a timer for 25 minutes just to work on the task at hand — no surfing the net, no checking email, etc. Check out the Pomodoro Technique for a cool system to get things done while still taking those much-needed breaks. 

Perfectionism

Y’all know I’m a recovering perfectionist. Perfectionists tend to freeze up when it’s time to get to work because we’re afraid we won’t be able to perform well enough — we won’t be able to get it right. Sometimes we procrastinate, citing the need for more research or more preparation (confession: like I’m doing with my new book right now). Procrastination is perfectionism in action. The problem is, it’s not possible to produce greatness if there’s nothing started to refine. Author Jodi Picoult summarized the importance of avoiding perfectionism perfectly: “You can edit a bad page, but you can’t edit a blank page.” I literally remind myself of this every single day. The trick to overcoming it — do the work and ship it anyway. You can’t become a master without practice. 

Indulging in the snooze button

I think we’re all guilty of this one at some point. Sleep is a complex process, a series of cycles of light sleep, deep sleep, dream states, and that last cycle that actually prepares you to wake. When you hit the snooze button, you cancel out that work that your body has done to prepare you for wakefulness. You’ll wake up later groggy and even more tired than if you’d just gotten up, a feeling that can last all day. If you really want to be productive, it’s important to give your body that headstart on wakefulness by getting up when your alarm goes off. 

How to Kick These 3 Habits That Make You Less Productive

20 Stocking Stuffers to Add a Little Hygge to Your Holiday

20 Simple Stocking Stuffers to Add a Little Hygge to Your Holiday

The clock is ticking down to Christmas, and you may be thinking about last-minute gift ideas or stocking stuffers to round out your holiday gifts. It’s also cold outside, which means we’re all ready to hunker down at home for a cozy winter. To me, that sounds like we should work on our hygge just a bit.

Hygge is that feeling you get when you come home and leave all the world’s craziness outside. Click To Tweet

Hygge (pronounced hue-ga) is the Danish concept of happy, cozy living — it’s been quite trendy for the past few years, but has endured for decades in Europe.  It’s even more special to me after a trip I took this fall to Denmark and Norway.

Hygge can be roughly translated as “coziness” in English but it is so much more than just that. Hygge is that feeling you get when you come home and leave all the world’s craziness outside. It’s when you’re curled up with a soft blanket, completely engrossed in a good book. Hygge is when you’re surrounded by friends and family, just looking to sit back, relax, and fellowship together. Hygge is that feeling of coziness, togetherness, and peace.

Hygge is when you’re surrounded by friends and family, just looking to sit back, relax, and fellowship together. Hygge is that feeling of coziness, togetherness, and peace. Click To Tweet

A home filled with hygge is wonderful all year round, but there’s something about winter, particularly Christmas, that makes it the gold standard of coziness. Hygge is all about appreciating the simple things in life, and there are a few easy gifts you can give loved ones to help them conjure up that coziness in their home too.

  1. Hot tea or gourmet coffee. You could even include a teapot or French press.
  2. Decadent hot cocoa mixes, maybe with a pack of marshmallows.
  3. A fantastic mug for drinking that tea, coffee, and cocoa.
  4. A coffee mug cozy to keep your drink warm and your hands from a scalding mug.
  5. Homemade or high-quality jams and jellies.
  6. Home-baked bread to devour those jams and jellies with.
  7. Shower steamers to transform the shower into a place of relaxation and rejuvenation.
  8. Bundles of eucalyptus to hang on the shower head for an amazing aroma that lasts all winter.
  9. Delicious smelling soaps, maybe even with a fluffy washcloth.
  10. Bubble bath or bath salts for warm, relaxing baths.
  11. An amazing candle in a cozy scent. Fragrant wax melts and a warmer are wonderful too.
  12. Fairy lights to hang around the room to add a touch of magic.
  13. Pocket notebooks for jotting down ideas, dreams, and favorite quotes.
  14. A fantastic pen to make those notes a pleasure to write.
  15. A new book and pretty bookmark.
  16. A board game or card game to share with friends and family.
  17. A plush blanket to cuddle under for reading or watching movies.
  18. Fluffy socks — because it’s not cozy having cold feet!
  19. A little box of decadent chocolates — because chocolate.
  20. An adult coloring book and a set of color pencils.
Hygge is all about appreciating the simple things in life, and there are a few easy gifts you can give loved ones to help them conjure up that coziness in their home too.  Click To Tweet
20 Simple Stocking Stuffers to Add a Little Hygge to Your Holiday