7 Songs to Inspire Simple Living

 

Creating Space to Dream Big

People haven’t always been there for me but music always has.
Taylor Swift

While so many things and people in the world may seem to be making your life complicated or pressuring you to stay busy, here are a few songs that can remind you to take time to enjoy what you have.

I intentionally chose songs from a few different genres so that hopefully there’s at least one you’ve never heard.

If you’re trying to simplify your life, you’ll be able to relate to each one in some way even though they’re so different.

There are only seven here, so please let me know your favorite songs that remind you to slow down and focus on what’s important. I’m sure there are so many, and I’d love to add them to my playlist.

 

1. Lynyrd Skynyrd, “Simple Life”

2. Zac Brown Band, “Homegrown”

3. Tyrone Wells, “Simple Life”

4. Cindy Morgan, “How Could I Ask for More?”

5. Jim Brickham, “Simple Things”

6. Tim McGraw, “Live Like You Were Dying”

7. Newsong, “Life in My Day”

 

Don’t forget to tell me your favorite song that inspires simplicity.

Why I’m Glad My Furniture Got Stolen

ClutterFreeCouchHonestly, there are lots of reasons I’m not glad it happened.

For one, furniture wasn’t the only thing that was stolen.

Second, some of it was from my childhood while the rest had been my grandfather’s. And I’m super sentimental, apparently.

Plus the whole situation just gives me another reason to be suspicious of others.

But being the optimist that I am, I like to learn from experience and find the good in a bad situation.

This one took about three years, but I’m starting to get over it. 🙂 Mostly because I feel like it’s too late and too much work that won’t even be worth it if I do try to do something about it.

End of rant.

A Fresh Start

About ten years ago I read an article about a girl whose house burnt down. She talked about how lucky she felt because she got a fresh start.

And that’s why I still remember it. I was sure I wouldn’t feel that way if it happened to me. And I was pretty much right.

But once I decided to give myself a fresh start by getting rid of stuff, I became grateful to have less stuff to sort through.

While it would’ve been nice to choose what to get rid of and to get money for it, I was glad I at least didn’t have to deal with the logistics that go along with that.

What’s the Point?

I recently had another lady tell me her house also burnt down when she was younger, which basically left her with the thought, “Why even have a bunch of stuff if it could just get destroyed?”

I do like the fact that we can take our memories and experiences with us everywhere much easier than all of our possessions.

And what’s the point of arguing over stuff that isn’t going to last?

What’s more important? The stuff we argue over? Or the person we argue with?

It’s easy to forget which one is irreplaceable, which one we’d rather not live without.

The Best Thing

The best thing to me about having my items stolen was the realization that I can live without the things I love and still have a full life.

I miss the items occasionally, but I don’t think about them all the time. I still have the good memories associated with them and the people who gave them to me. And that’s helped make it easier for me to get rid of other items since then.

I don’t depend on my stuff.

Don’t get me wrong. I get frustrated when my computer doesn’t cooperate or my car messes up. I count on my stuff to function properly, but my life doesn’t end when one of those items is taken away. My family and friends don’t abandon me. I don’t lose my ability to laugh and smile, although I may choose not to do those things for a while.

It’s a really freeing realization to have.

My Wish for You

While I don’t hope your furniture gets stolen, I do hope that as you go through your day, you’ll be able to look at negative situations in a more positive way. I hope you’ll remember what’s most important in your life and then be sure to make some room for it.

I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

Have a great day Living Tiny and Dreaming Big!

Practical Tips for Minimizing Clutter (without taking all day!)

The more you have, the more occupied you are. The less you have, the more free you are. -Mother Theresa

After almost six months of intentional decluttering, I’ve learned that establishing systems for the process keeps me from taking all day and getting frustrated with it.

Now it seems that, in no time, I’ve gotten rid of things I didn’t use or didn’t enjoy using. I don’t miss a thing!

But I also don’t feel like it took over my life. I’m guessing I spent an average of about an hour and a half each week actually decluttering (although I also spent time reading about how others did it and gained inspiration from them).

I’m excited to have a guest sharing her advice to help you start small especially if you have a schedule too full to allow you to get rid of all your clutter in a day or two.

Sadly, so many people get discouraged when they don’t see a lot of progress immediately or when they get burnt out by trying to do it all in a week.

Follow Lola’s advice and you’ll be off to a great start!

Minimize Clutter

Lola’s Advice on Seamlessly Minimizing Clutter

The best way to make something better is to stop making it worse. This definitely holds true for clutter as well.

Decluttering Tool #1: Monitor Intake

If you want to minimize the clutter in your life, monitor the clutter you are bringing in! Only bring things into your home that “spark joy” and make you happy. This is true not only for the things you buy, but also for the things you can get for free!

When you are at the store, only buy the things that fit into this happiness category.

  • If you don’t love it, put it back! If you’re shopping for clothing, only buy it if you are super excited to wear it as soon as possible.
  • Save your receipts! Just because you loved it at the store does not mean you will love it in your closet. So after a couple of weeks, if you still haven’t even taken the tags off, take it back! Take charge of your belongings by taking charge of what you purchase.

So what do you do with things that you get for free? The same thing!

Unless you absolutely need it or love it, don’t accept it. It is such a nice gesture for someone to give you something for free. Treat that gesture with kindness and gratitude. If you need the item, take it. If you love the item, take it.

However, if the item being given to you is likely to turn into clutter, kindly decline. Do all of this with sincere gratitude, no matter the decision.

Whenever it comes to adding something new to your home, remember to minimize the input to maximize your space.

Decluttering Tool #2: Increase Exports

Another really helpful tool in decluttering is the one-in-two-out rule.

If you have a certain category of items in your life (shoes, paperwork, dishes, etc.) that has gotten overwhelming and needs to shrink, this rule is very helpful and simple.

Here’s how it works:

For every one item you bring into your home, you must bring two items out. You can donate them if they are in good condition or throw them away if they are not.

This will help you to gradually make the amount more manageable over time.

Once things become manageable, you can adjust the rule to a one-in-one-out rule to keep them that way. You guessed it, for every one item you bring into your home, bring one item out. This is a great way to keep everything manageable over time.

You can also apply this rule in general to your home.

For example, recently I found a dress I loved and it was on sale two for $10. It was perfect, came in tons of colors and patterns and fit well. So I purchased four of them.

When I got home, I realized that I didn’t have any dresses, or really any other clothes, that I wanted to part with.

However, I am constantly working to make my space more manageable, so I wanted to cut a little clutter out. When I realized I didn’t want to part with any dresses, I decided to find something else to part with.

In my backyard, there were tons of wires and hardware from the previous tenant that were no longer good. So, I spent the afternoon clearing it all out and throwing it away.

The physical space taken up by the things I got rid of far exceeded the space taken by the new things brought in.

Managing what you bring into your home and controlling the overall number of things in your home becomes easier with time. Before you bring something new in, make sure you love it! After you bring something new in, donate something you no longer use!

Over time, you’ll kick the clutter habit!

 

Lola Dart is the creator of The MINTOA™ Mentality and owner of Live and Learn with Lola. She works together with clients to make their lives better by teaching them how to transform their motivations into accomplishments.

If you liked her advice here, be sure to follow her on Facebook.