Our days seem to get faster and faster and filled with more and more distractions. This is a huge point of stress for lots of us and can make the difference between being sick or healthy.
Is it possible to simplify our days? Yes, but as with all habits, a hectic schedule can be hard to break, so doing it in steps can make it easier. Life Coach Kate Tilston shows us how to keep things simple.
Know What’s Important
The simple answer is to identify what’s important and eliminate the rest. Not always possible, I appreciate that, but understanding what is really important to you helps keep things in perspective.
Say No to Extra Commitments
Now that you’ve identified what’s important, you need to start saying “No” so that you can create space and make time for the things that are on your important list. List and evaluate your commitments (professional and personal) and say No to at least one. It just takes a call or email.
Each morning, list your one to three most important to-dos. List other tasks you’d like to do. Say no to some of them. See if you can limit your list to between five and seven per day. Limiting your tasks helps you focus. Acknowledge you’re not going to get everything done in one day.
Do not get distracted
When are you going to do your most important work? Schedule it with a block of time and become unavailable. Switch off the Internet, and hold all calls. Just do the most important task, then the next one. Everything else WILL wait.
We spend our lives rushing around like lunatics. Slow down. Life won’t collapse if you aren’t rushing from task to task, email to email. You can pause and take a moment to breathe before moving on.
One task at a time, with full focus on that task. You will find that you will get more done in less time if you concentrate on each task and there will be fewer mistakes
Batch Smaller Tasks Together
Emails, paperwork and other little things at the bottom of your task list shouldn’t get in the way of your important tasks. But they still need to be done. It’s best to do these later in the day when your energy is lower and you’ve done the important tasks for the day. Do them in one go.
When the world is feeling overwhelming, when we are trying to spin plates, juggle balls and cram too many things into a day, we sometimes have to, even physically, take a step back and look at what we are doing. Are we making life more complicated for ourselves?
Sometimes life is just complicated and busy and we have to suck it up. But if we are honest with ourselves, there are times when we can calm things down, we can choose to simplify things and make life feel easier to manage.
A simpler life needs planning. If we look ahead in our diary and identify potentially quieter days or weeks, we can consciously choose to give our heads a break and schedule some more simple days. I appreciate it isn’t always easy but believe me – it is essential for our mental health and wellbeing.