10 Ways to (Really) Simplify Your Life This Year


Silas & Grace

A clean kitchen space.

My husband and I are full-time travelers, so creating a list of ways to simplify your life only seemed to make sense.

We’re always moving throughout the year, so carrying too much stuff would really slow us down (and would be pretty annoying too).

We’ve found so many ways to simplify our lives because let’s be honest, travel can be stressful. We’ve had to create and learn new hacks to make things more simple, otherwise we’d get no rest.

Now you may not be a full-time traveler like me. In fact, you may be a stay at home wife or mom, you could be working full-time, or you might be in college.

But with whatever your life looks like right now, I know that all of these tips will seriously help you.

They’re not in chronological order, so please feel free to pick the ones you know you can implement now and do them in the order that works best for your life.

Then, watch as things become more simplified!

1. Say No (Three Ways You Can Do It)


There is one word out there that many people don’t like. In fact, some hate it.

It’s been known throughout the generations as one of the most annoying words. This word is… no.

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And here are some instances where it might come in handy:

  1. If you’re working hard on a project at work and your boss asks you if you could take another one on, just let them know you can’t.
    Don’t be afraid that they’ll get angry or fire you. Just explain that if you take too much on, you know that you won’t be able to give the first project the attention it needs. They’ll understand, and this will save you from bringing the stress home from work.
  2. Your friend or older daughter wants to know if you could watch the kids for a day because they have to run x y and z errands. But you have too much to do. Just say no. Know your limits. It’s ok to have boundaries.
  3. Your schedule has gotten way out of hand. You have to run your kids to practice, go to the doctor, work that weekend, clean the house, clean the car, run these errands, etc. So learn how to say no to certain things on your schedule.
  4. Have your kid carpool with someone to practice that week, know which errands must be done, find ways to be more efficient or avoid duplicating work and outsource some household chores to your kids. Only do the essentials or things will never get done.

And this brings me to the next point…  

2. Outsourcing and Automating

Woman sitting on her bed and looking at her computer.

In order to get more stuff done in our lives, we need to outsource and automate.  

This will enable us to focus full-time on high value tasks that will help us feel like we’re moving forward – not treading water.

Here are just a few ways you could do this in your own life:

  • Automate your bills or other types of payments as much as possible.
  • If you can pay the neighbor kid to do the lawn so you can do something that’s going to bring you more money, joy, or rest, then great!  
  • If your son can walk the dog, all the better.  

By removing the low-value tasks you can free up mental bandwidth for greater clarity and productivity.  

Related: The (Simple) 30 Day De-Stress Challenge

3. Minimize It

Woman sitting on a sofa.

One of the best ways to simplify your life it to take a minimalist approach. And I’m not just talking about your clothing or house (although I will go into that).

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Here are a few examples:

  • If you feel that you take too long on your emails, set certain times when you’ll answer them like 11 AM and 4 PM. And if you have clients and coworkers, you can let them know about this.
  • Minimize the time you spend with other coworkers so you can go home sooner.
  • Minimize how long you spend on social media or Netflix so you can truly do things that bring you life and make you happy.
  • Now for the home, don’t do it all at once. Don’t do it! Take one room at a time (whether that’s one a day or a week), and start throwing or giving away all of the things you don’t need. Silas and I have moved a lot and you have no idea how many times we’ve had to downsize because we realized how much stuff we had.. and how much stuff we didn’t use.
    Start getting rid of things until there’s less clutter and the stress of trying to clean and keep things in order has been minimized.

4. Books


I feel like reading books that will improve your efficiency and workflow is a real game changer.

And if you want things to be more simplified, then definitely invest in a few.

Start reading books that’ll show you how to:

  • Advance your career
  • Give you a healthier thought life and relationships
  • Set boundaries with people that stress you out.
  • Keep your home consistently clean and organized.
  • Anything that will help simplify and improve your life.

Side Note, Thousands of people have been ridiculously successful and have written down their thoughts and stories in books.  You can learn from them and duplicate their wisdom, mindsets, progress, and avoid their mistakes.

5. Pull a Steve Jobs


Do you ever remember reading or hearing about how Steve Jobs only wore one outfit everyday so that he could use more mental energy on other things?

Well I’m not suggesting you do exactly that, but I am suggesting that you do something similar.

Instead of spending forever on figuring out which outfit you should wear to work, figure out an outfit you want to wear for each day, and have them ready to pull out. Make it so that you don’t have to think about it and more importantly, you don’t ever have to overthink it (again).

These could be outfits you specifically bought for work or ones you already have. Either way though, it’ll give you more time in the morning to focus on other things.

And don’t worry about wearing the same outfit every Wednesday (assuming you don’t mix them up a bit), no one is actually going to care. This is work, not a place to compete in fashion. In fact.. many of them are probably doing the exact same thing.

6. Do This One Thing Every Night


This one is fairly simple.

We all know that doing things the night before is a great idea, but an even better way to make sure you don’t spend too much time on one task is to set a timer.

Make your kid’s lunches in under 5 minutes, make sure everything is in order to walk out the door in 3, prep breakfast in 10, etc.

This way doing things the night before doesn’t seem intimidating. If you know how long it takes to do something and you stick to it, you won’t feel like you’re taking away from your evening.

7. Buy It in Two Weeks Challenge


I learned that if I just waited 2 weeks to buy something (you can make it longer if you want), then I would know if I really wanted it or not.

There have been so many times where I thought I really wanted something, but after two weeks… I couldn’t care less about it.

This has saved me from making a ton of impulse purchases and having things around my home that I don’t even care about.

8. Set Your Slow Down Times

Woman reading poems on her couch.

Now if you end up using some of these tips and hacks, you’ll probably notice that it’ll give you more time on your hands.

And with this extra time, you need to schedule your “Slow Down Times.”

Set this time in the morning, afternoon, and/or evening; any time where you feel like you can actually unwind and relax.

With this time, you can be with someone who recharges you like a friend or spouse. Find a quiet place to read, pray, or zone out and drink a hot cup of something.  Make it your recharge time away from the stress and noise.

9. Have a Launch Pad


You have no idea how many times having a launch pad has saved me from searching the house trying to find my keys, phone, or wallet.

A launch pad is simply a place (whether it’s a small basket or tray) where you can keep the things that are essential to have on you before leaving the house.

Keeping things there is definitely habit you have to form, so don’t get too frustrated if you forget a few times.

The average American spends whole days every year (if you add the time up) looking for things they can’t find, so definitely make your own launch pad.

10. Your Phone Reminders Are Your Best Friend


I love phone reminders because they pop up exactly when I need them to.  This is especially handy when you’re trying to juggle phone calls and different time zones.  

It’s also good if you feel like you’re going to forget something that needs to be done. They’ll definitely give you a sense of peace, ease, and calmness knowing that you don’t have to think about it.

When it comes up, it comes up. Whether that’s a bill, a get-together, or a work related project, there’s no worrying that you’re forgetting about something.

You deal with it when it reminds you.

Post originally published on Chasing Foxes.

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Gone are the days of those random clothing pieces in your closet you never wear.

Now is the time to make yourself look great with a lot less effort!

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Chasing Foxes was started in 2016 as a way for Grace and her husband, Silas, to start traveling. However, they started to realize that they had a passion for improving themselves, and wanted to help others level up their lives as well. So whether it's with cooking, travel, or staying healthy, they want to help you better your life bit by bit, as they do the same.

Leveling Up Your Lifestyle Wellness

Silas & Grace

Chasing Foxes was started in 2016 as a way for Grace and her husband, Silas, to start traveling. However, they started to realize that they had a passion for improving themselves, and wanted to help others level up their lives as well. So whether it's with cooking, travel, or staying healthy, they want to help you better your life bit by bit, as they do the same.

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