• Nancy

A Simple New Year?

I love to shop for old, used books. I recently found this gem "The Simplicity Reader" by Elaine St. James. It's actually three books in one and dates to 1998 (which is more than 20 years ago!). The three books included in the anthology are titled: Simplify Your Life, Inner Simplicity and Living the Simple Life. Some of the tips are dated, but I think the structure of the books is great; lists of 100 things that you can do in order to simplify.

It's that time of year when I try to make a New Year's resolution. As I was thinking about what my resolution would be this year, my thoughts drifted back to this book. Maybe I should make a list of ways to simplify my life? Or is that, ironically, one more thing to do during a busy time of year :)

So I landed on a short list of three things I can do to make my life easier. Seeing as I can't give away the kids (kidding!) I have to consider other areas to trim to the fat.

1. Simplify gift giving: having very young children, I'm on the toddler party circuit. I've trimmed down the number of parties that we go to already, so the parties that we do attend feel fun and special, and we aren't on the go every-single-weekend! I know it's not personal, but I think I will buy some gift cards in bulk this year; that way the birthday boys and girls can get exactly what they want and I can save some time!

2. Install drip tube for my flower beds: I'm an avid gardener. I put in a couple of flower beds over the last couple of years, and now my watering routine is taking some serious time (30 minutes plus every day) in the spring and summer. It's time to install an irrigation system to save me some precious time in the summer months.

3. Pair down my digital time: Like many people interested in organizing, I've already unsubscribed to e-mail lists and deleted those extra email addresses, but I know there's s a lot more I can do to make the time I spend online more meaningful and less mindless.

E-mail is a huge time suck for many of us. Lifehack has some really practical tips, including establishing a "reply by XX day" folder, which I think it really smart (as long as you remember to check it)!

Some people recommend, which is an app that rolls up all your promotional email into one! Sounds great, but I have to admit I am leery of their data use policy. I will have to do some more research on this one.

There's my three for 2020. No "to do's" that don't save me time (at least in the end)! Here's to a more simple and sane year in 2020 for all of us.