Dare to Simplify

I’ve been working hard to simplify my life lately, but not too hard because that could complicate things, but just hard enough. I’ve taken some smart steps like saying no to things I didn’t want to do and getting rid of clutter and then some not-so-smart steps like ignoring my email box, ceasing any kind of quality blogging for days at a time and letting the house get super messy while I take the time to “enjoy life” by spending all day reading.

There’s just too much going on. I have my hand in too many pies. But they all taste SO GOOD! I am over-stimulated most of the time. I don’t like at least 1/3 of the things I’m doing and there are several things I want to do but don’t have time for. For a long time I tried so hard to go overboard with the little details of holidays, birthdays, and celebrations that I got burnt out and now I sometimes forget to do anything at all to mark special days. My to-do list has gotten so long that I’m afraid to look at it. I get a sickish feeling in the pit of my stomach when I see my planner laying on the counter so I just ignore it. At least 4 million trees gave their lives to create the massive piles of paperwork that are stacked all over my house waiting to be attended to.


I’ve been thinking “ENOUGH” for a while now but didn’t get up the gumption to actually do anything about it until I was talking to my brain doctor this summer and he suggested that I really focus on trying to say no unless I have a compelling reason to say yes to the various things that are asked of me. He’s a pretty smart guy and has gotten to know me fairly well in the past 3 and a half years since Magoo was born. (If you read the cover story in the NW Living section of the Seattle Times this weekend, you well know that I went a little loopy a few years ago and blog on the advice of my special doctor friend. No matter how open I am about my postpartum experiences, it will always be a bit jarring to see my mental health history in print like that.)

So for the next little while, until I’m as simple as Lenny from Of Mice and Men but far less violent, I am going to set a goal for simplification each week and I’d love some friends to join me. In the spirit of simplification, I don’t have a graphic or a Mr. Linky for this endeavor and the goals will be really small tiny embryonic steps to Lenny-ness.

I’ll post them on Sunday nights and we can all report back the following Sunday. You can leave your thoughts in my comments section or if you post on your blog, let me know.

Dare to Simplify Week 1 — Audio Input
For the week of October 5th I will play only classical music or none at all(besides when I’m working out — I’m just not sure Vivaldi will get my heart rate up enough.). The music will be calming and have no vocals. This includes all music played in my car, house or on my MP3 player.

This may seem like a strange way to start the experiment but I am over-stimulated and overwhelmed by the noise all around me, song lyrics, crazy beats, loud radio DJs and obnoxious political ads. It shouldn’t be that hard to calm down my audio input or even turn it off. I’m curious to see if this helps me feel more peaceful overall.

Care to join me?

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