I have been on a quest lately. Mostly in my mind, and probably a bit more passively than actively, but none the less on a quest. I have been thinking about it a lot lately, and have had a few conversations with my husband as well, but reading a couple of blogs this morning only reiterates my need and desire to become more active than just thinking. This blog article is pretty long, but I find much of what he is saying in "The Difference: Living Well vs. Doing Well" reflects a lot of how I feel with wanting to simplify. And then another one talks about "Balance and Well-being" and my life is not to the extreme of hers and my blog not taking up as much time, but the principles in general that she shares really reflect how I am feeling.
There are things in my life I feel take up too much time and attention and I have worked to make these areas simpler. For example, picking out meals for the week/month can be time-consuming, but I find that using Evernote helps me to have all recipes in one spot, lets me tag them and find what I want quickly and easily, lets me quickly paste pages and recipes I find on the internet, and lets me continually update with my changes and alterations. This has cut the time I spend on this task greatly. But then there are other areas of my life that I haven't found the best solution for. Like finding time for keeping my house clean, grocery shopping, doing laundry, doing home improvement, spending quality time with my kids, working part time, coaching volleyball, blogging about life and other issues, all the while trying to be a wife and mom and friend...
Sometimes I feel overwhelmed at what seems impossible, and sometimes I feel highly motivated and can find the time and desire to get an immense amount of stuff done in a day. And I do love checking things off of a to-do list, but I do not want my life to become one big to-do list! I want to enjoy the process of living, to enjoy all that God has created for me to enjoy!
Some small steps I am taking to work on balance and simplicity:
I am planning a yard sale and I am excited for how much I hope to sell, for how much I hope to get out of our house and feel like we don't have so much stuff around that we don't need.
I am working to create structure in my day, but with flexibility so that, again, I am not bound by a life of to-do's.
I am trying to make sure I make it a priority to work out on a daily basis because I know how good this makes me feel, physically and emotionally.
I am trying to find times and places for my toddler to interact with others his age so he can grow socially and so that I can try to meet other moms possibly in similar life stages.
I am also trying to be more inviting about having others over for a meal, or making it a point to get out of the house and interact with other people and families. It's good for all of us! Relationships can be hard but they are so good!
I am trying to use small amounts of time to clean/cook/do housework instead of getting overwhelmed at all that needs to be done and the time that needs to be involved and not doing anything as a result.
I am trying to make sure I take a little time for myself each day, even if it is just a little extra time in the shower, I know I need it and I know I feel better after it.
How do you simplify? How do you find balance? I'd love to hear about it. And I'd love to keep you involved in my process as well, as I hopefully begin to see how my small changes make big impacts.