Benefits of Simplifying Your Life

Simplify your life
Simplify your life

Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity.
Charles Mingus

Today, we live in a world where we are overwhelmed, overworked, and flooded with media exposure, making things more complicated than they should be. Take cell phones for example; a device that was created to simplify and make your life more productive has done the exact opposite for many, but has become a necessity for daily life. But why look to simplicity when everyone else seems to run to more complex solutions?

Clear Mental Noise – Although our brains are capable of many remarkable things, studies have shown that our performance and productivity plummets when we multi-task. By simplifying our thoughts to the single task at hand, we are able to boost our performance and focus on the important details with more clarity.

Lower Stress – A nice byproduct of clearing out your mental noise is lower stress levels. Although high stress levels can be effectively battled with healthy eating, exercise, and good conversations, many people unfortunately tend to cope with stress in negative ways such as by skipping meals, eating junk food, drinking and cigarettes.

Lessen clutter – Clutter, that pile of mess that thrives on your desk, on your bed and everywhere else can be reduced or even eliminated by simplifying your needs. Do you really need to buy an extra pair of pants or the latest electronic gadget?

More Money in Your Savings Account – Simplifying your needs and lessening the amount of clutter you accumulate will translate into more money into your savings account.  This can also be a significant peace of mind when emergency strikes and you have to forgo income till things return to their normal state.

Less Time Cleaning and Maintaining – When we have a lot of ‘stuff’ we tend to take a lot more time cleaning and maintaining.  Do you have so much clothes that they tend to overflow from your closets and drawers? By simplifying and minimizing our needs we can effectively cut down on the time we require to clean and maintain which means more time for other things you enjoy doing.

More Time for YOU – By simplifying your life commitments, you’ll be able to have more time for yourself.  Do you want to learn a new instrument? A new language? Or to just relax and do nothing? You can do this and more with the extra time you gain from simplifying the things in life we tend to complicate.

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication
Leonardo Da Vinci

Simplifying our life offers us many benefits that go beyond what I’ve outlined above and is something I have been working on to both improve productivity and sanity at the same time. Stay tuned for more on how to begin simplifying your life

Here are some great resources to help you get started in learning
about simplifying your life:

Mnmlist by Leo Babauta
The Minimalist Path by David Darmon

Photo by StefanosP

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18 thoughts on “Benefits of Simplifying Your Life”

  1. Ken,

    I think this is a really important post and one of my favorites that you have a written. Simplicity is actually a much healthier lifestyle. MY roommate is the master of clutter and mess and it drives me crazy. But one thing I noticed is how anxiety ridden he could become. Once I told him the mess was the cause of anxiety, he actually shifted gears a bit.

    Another thing that’s interesting that one of my surfer friends shared with me was a story in national geographic about a tribe in tanzania that has not adopted modern technology or evolved, yet they are among the happiest healthiest people in the earth. So maybe it’s true “The God’s must be crazy”

  2. @Srinivas: The less clutter I have, the more clear I’ve been able to think. My desk used to be a mess, but since organizing and cleaning my workspace, it’s helped me become much more productive.

  3. Hey Ken.

    We get a lot from this. I have more energy than some folks partially due to my cleanliness or organization level. The less stuff you have around, the more life feels like an opportunity, instead of a weight. I have to get rid of more things too. I think we are on the right track with this.

    Having less stress is something we undervalue. Our minds think a bit more stress will help us be doing more, when this isn’t the case when we look back on the past few hours, for example.

    We pay for clutter with less energy. It is a trade-off.

    Cool stuff here.

    1. @Armen: I find that visual clutter can definitely add to both mental clutter and stress. I used to have a lot of clutter especially on my desk as I mentioned to Srinivas. It got so bad at times, I didn’t even use my desk for its purpose!
      By clearing the clutter I got a nice boost in productivity and not only that, it just feels refreshing.

  4. For every gain there is a loss, for every loss there is a gain. I have always tried for moderation. Tried is the key word. Some good ideas, and a fine post.

    1. @Hal: Thank you for the comment. Moderation is a key to most things in life, isn’t it? For health, fitness and wellness.

  5. I like the way you break down the benefits. De-cluttering seems overwhelming to me sometimes. When I read your posts I start thinking more about slow small steady steps. I keep my desk at work very clear and consequently get a lot done. But my office at home is cluttered and I find myself out of energy by the time I get home from work.

    1. @Erin: I understand! It’s so much easier to keep desks at work tidier than it is to keep the home office uncluttered!

  6. Great points you brought up, Ken.

    It is very easy to forget that simplicity is usually more powerful than the complicated. Organizing our tasks into well-defined units clears our mind thus giving us more power to do more.

  7. @Tim: Thanks for visiting. I agree, simplicity can give us the clarity we need when things go awry.

  8. Great tips to create a simple life.

    I agree with all your points and have tried to let go of my things. The less we have, the lighter our mind and body become.

    Thanks for sharing.:)

    1. @Thai: Thank you for your comment. Simplifying our lives helps us clear a lot of noise from our daily lives.

  9. Great quotes!

    Have you read Scaling Down by Judi Culbertson? If not you should definitely check it out and consider adding it to your recommended reading list. It’s definitely in line with your message and I found it to be a great read.

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