Simplifying life is something I hear a lot about lately both from clients and friends and family. And there is no doubt that it is a very important step that demands a concentrated effort. A while back I had an experience with a friend of mine, I’ll call Marianne, who needed to make that effort. Marianne had taken on too much and was feeling overstressed from juggling a busy schedule and too many demands. I gave her the same advice I give to clients: if you want to feel more in sync with life, you need to take steps to simplify it.
First, I encouraged her to prioritize her commitments and eliminate at least one. Right away, Marianne eliminated one commitment and then later decided to let go of two more. She said she felt a little guilty at first, but in the end freeing up valuable time was a huge relief.
Next, Marianne took stock of her rather lengthy “to-do” list. Long to-do lists can make you feel like you are drowning in a sea of work that will never end. She decided which tasks she would cross off, as well as which ones she could delegate to someone else or simply put on hold until later. She later told me that shortening her list had made it easier for her to complete tasks, and that gave her a feeling of accomplishment.
After that, I told her to address any problem areas. Those areas for whatever reason — be it a lack of space, bad habits or a mixture of both — seem to be eternally cluttered and messy. I told her to write down what she thought was the root of her clutter issues and then begin brainstorming how she might resolve them.
When I last spoke to Marianne, she sounded much less stressed and more peaceful. She thanked me for my suggestions and said that her quality of life had greatly improved since her simplification overhaul. As you would imagine, I was and am very happy for her.
I hope you will find this story helpful. Most of us can stand to simplify our lives to some degree or even help someone close to us who needs to do that.
“We discover that imagination is immediately subdivisible into self-postulated reality, and mutually or agreed-upon postulated reality. Postulated reality, considered reality.
“And thus, an individual becomes slavishly devoted to any reality which is uniformly agreed upon and will shy away from any reality which he himself is postulating. He has become entirely dependent upon the Third Dynamic. …
“Let’s look how intimate that is to an auditor. A preclear leaves the auditing session. He goes home and nobody home agrees with him he’s better. So, he’s no better, see?
“What is the trouble with him? He’s waiting for people to agree with him. He has to have their reality; he can’t have his own reality. … That means his imagination is in bad shape. He does not have complete liberty to depart from agreed-upon truth. …
“You see, if you could postulate anything with certainty, it could be true and would be true.”
“The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather in a lack of will.”
Football Coach, Vince Lombardi
Your action for today is to look at an area where you want to improve and see if you have the will – and not just the desire, to do it.
Have an extraordinary day!