Simplify Your Life Week

As a Quaker, this week is near and dear to me. Simplicity is one of our core tenets, which I appreciate very much. Late summer can be a good time to start getting rid of things so you go into fall with less stuff. Goodwill or some other organization will be glad of your extras, as long as they are good quality. It’s always good to share with others.

But simplifying your life is about more than getting rid of what you no longer use. It’s a way to look at your life and eliminate the things that take away from what you really value, such as family time, or relaxation from the stresses in your life. For me, I value time to write, and have accepted a life of less money to have that time. Only you can decide what it is that causes clutter in your life, whether that is actual physical objects, or allowing others to take too much of your time.

So how do you go about simplifying your life? The first step is to understand what is really important to you. There are many ways to go about that. One that worked for me was to think of my funeral and what I hoped people would say about me. If you do that, then ask yourself, are you living your life as if those values are uppermost?

Once you know what is important, then there are various strategies to implement that.

  • Just say “No.” You don’t have to agree to everything. Know your boundaries.
  • Limit the things that are unimportant. Do you really need that pair of shoes? Do you need to remodel the kitchen? No judgment, just know what is important to you.
  • Have a plan. Think about what you will need for the week ahead and get ready beforehand so you are not tempted to spend because you were unprepared.
  • Learn to live below your means, and use the extra money to get out of debt. That will give you a tremendous amount of freedom.

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Quotes about simplicity

The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.–Hans Hofmann

The consumption society has made us feel that happiness lies in having things, and has failed to teach us the happiness of not having things.–Elise Boulding

I believe that a simple and unassuming manner of life is best for everyone, best both for the body and the mind.–Albert Einstein

It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all.–Laura Ingalls Wilder

A little simplification would be the first step toward rational living, I think.–Eleanor Roosevelt

Manifest plainness,
Embrace simplicity
Reduce selfishness,
Have few desires.–Lao-tzu

Our life is frittered away by detail… Simplify, simplify, simplify! … Simplicity of life and elevation of purpose.–Henry David Thoreau

Reduce the complexity of life by eliminating the needless wants of life, and the labors of life reduce themselves.–Edwin Way Teale

Simplicity, clarity, singleness: these are the attributes that give our lives power and vividness and joy.–Richard Halloway

Simplicity is the nature of great souls.–Papa Ramadas

Simplify your life. You don’t grow spiritual, you shrink spiritual.–Steve Maraboli

Simplifying isn’t meant to leave your life empty, it’s meant to leave space in your life for what you really want to do. Know what those things are before you start.–Leo Babaura

‘Tis a gift to be simple,
‘Tis a gift to be free,
‘Tis a gift to come down
Where we ought to be
And when we find ourselves
In the place that’s right
‘Twill be in the valley
Of love and delight.–Shaker hymn

Find more than 9000 inspirational quotes and a link to the Quote of the Day list, as well as quotation related merchandise, at http://www.quotelady.com.

Simple Living

My church is having a Simplify Your Life yard sale this weekend. The idea is, you go through all the clutter you have accumulated and give away what you no longer need, or anything that keeps you from living your true values.

Simplicity or living simply is not a, well, simple concept because it means different things to different people. One might find it easy to get rid of a television, and despise a Game of Thrones fan. Or one might find it easy to use the library instead of buying books. Or live without very much technology. Each of us have areas where we can easily step back, and other areas where giving something up is very difficult. Of course.

The secret is to take a look at who you are and understand what you value, and then live all your life according to those values. There are many ways to get at this understanding. Ask friends and family members what they see as your strong points. Or think about what you want written on your tombstone or spoken at your eulogy. Ask yourself what you would do if money were no object. Use whatever works for you to get at your true self. There are also all sorts of books out there, from the philosophical, like First Things First by Stephen Covey, to the entirely practical like all the cheapskate books by Jeff Yeager.

De-cluttering, downsizing, simplifying your house and your life – whatever you call it, it’s good for you, if for no other reason than taking stock from time to time gets you on, or back on the right track. So start a box for Goodwill, hold a garage sale, throw something out. It will make you feel lighter (and maybe richer).

Quotes on simplicity

The ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.–Hans Hofmann

Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius–and a lot of courage–to move in the opposite direction.–Albert Einstein

Frugality is one of the most beautiful and joyful words in the English language, and yet one that we are culturally cut off from understanding and enjoying. The consumption society has made us feel that happiness lies in having things, and has failed to teach us the happiness of not having things.–Elise Boulding

I’ve learned to keep things simple. Look at your choices, pick the best one, then go to work with all your heart.–Pat Riley

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

Manifest plainness,
Embrace simplicity
Reduce selfishness,
Have few desires.–Lao-tzu

Our life is frittered away by detail… Simplify, simplify, simplify! … Simplicity of life and elevation of purpose.–Henry David Thoreau

The simple things are also the most extraordinary things, and only the wise can see them.–Paulo Coelho

Simplicity is an exact medium between too little and too much.–Sir Joshua Reynolds

Simplicity is the nature of great souls.–Papa Ramadas

Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.–Leonardo da Vinci

Simplifying isn’t meant to leave your life empty, it’s meant to leave space in your life for what you really want to do. Know what those things are before you start.–Leo Babaura

‘Tis a gift to be simple,
‘Tis a gift to be free,
‘Tis a gift to come down
Where we ought to be
And when we find ourselves
In the place that’s right
‘Twill be in the valley
Of love and delight.–Shaker hymn

To be simple is the best thing in the world.–G. K. Chesterton

Find nearly 9000 inspirational quotes and a link to the Quote of the Day list, as well as quotation related merchandise, at http://www.quotelady.com.