‘A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.’ ~Henry David Thoreau
Growing up is overrated.
You can delay it as much as you’d like, but eventually, you don’t have any choice but to give in.
I was in a meeting today where we were talking building and development costs of more than $2.5 million dollars. This was a serious conversation and no one broke up laughing at the thought of 2.5 million!
HOW THE HECK DID THAT HAPPEN? How did my simple life as a gymnastics coach become so complicated and cluttered?
It got me thinking – what would happen if I uncluttered my life. A life uncluttered by most of the things people fill their lives with, and left with space for what really matters. A life that isn’t constant busy-ness and rushing, but contemplation and creation, connection with people I love and time for nature and activity.
That doesn’t mean I have zero clutter and zero complications: I’m a part of the world, not a secluded monk. I have possessions, electronics, distractions, and occasional busy-ness. I just would reduce it to make space for things of more importance.
Some Reminders and Some things I need to do.
- • Decluttering my home and work space. It can lead to a less cluttered mind. These visual distractions pull on us in more ways than we realize.
• A quiet unrushed morning is a thing to treasure. I try to wake early so that I have some quiet time to drink my coffee, read the news and chat with my son
• I can’t have a simple life if I’m unwilling to let go of what I’m used to. I need to make changes.
• Am I filling my life with distractions? It’s probably because I’m really afraid of what life would be like without constant Internet, social media, news, TV, games, snacks.
• Simplify my eating. Simple, whole, healthy food is not only much healthier than junk food: it’s a pleasure.
• I must make time for what’s important: time with my kids, time with my wife, time for creating, time for my friends, time for exercise. Push everything else aside to make time.
• Overcommitting is a HUGE problem that I need to get control of. I need to painfully cut out a huge number of commitments to simplify my life. I look at my schedule and realize that Thanksgiving day is my next day off. (and I leave for Iceland Training Camp the day after!) It’s easy to fill up our lives because there are so many things that sound amazing. We hear about what others are doing and instantly want to add that to our lives. But it’s harder to remember that by adding so many things to our lives, we are subtracting space. And that space is important.
- • It’s tempting to fill in every little minute of the day with productivity or distractions. Don’t. Leave some emptiness.
- • We overemphasize productivity. Focus, priorities and effectiveness are more important. So is a nice walk with a loved one.
• If you can’t learn to sit in a quiet room alone with no distractions, you won’t be able to simplify.
• Buying things doesn’t solve our problems. Neither does food.
• It’s not how few things we own that matters. It’s whether we make those things count.
• It’s better to have six books on your shelf that you’re really going to read than a hundred you never get around to.
• Your attention is your most valuable possession. Give it as a gift to the people you love most, not a bunch of clowns on the Internet. Give it to the work that matters most, not distractions.
• Sometimes distractions are nice.