Simplifying + How to Notice What IS Working for You

Do you ever get extremely over stimulated by all the awesome (and not so awesome) things in this world that are continuously blasted at us from all directions? Me too. This over-stimulation doesn't always translate to me as such, and is more along the lines of "Oh my gosh, so cool, I would love to do/have/see/experience/buy/learn/etc.etc. that." And all of a sudden I have a whole new life plan or idea about a great thing I should implement in my life. I have come to learn that dreaming, planning, and manifesting are extremely powerful tools for building the life you want, but simplifying and noticing your patterns and what works for you within all of that is an art form. 

So how do we catch on before we have lost sight of all the goodness?

There are three {SIMPLE} things that are almost 100% ALWAYS the best way to bring me back to myself. Usually when I am craving change or getting distracted, I notice that I have strayed from these things and it is time to jump back in. These types of routines is what my friend Kelsey calls, non-negotiables. They are necessary to my being and my sanity, and continuously remind me that I am not lacking, just distracted. 

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My Non-Negotiables

Movement

The most necessary thing to my sanity. I HAVE  to take an hour a day to consciously move my body in a way that is freeing. Sometimes this looks like swimming, weight lifting, dancing, yoga, pilates, or HIIT. It changes based on what in the moment will optimally pull me out of my head and back into the present state of being in my body. I all of a sudden realize the stories and conversations happening in my head and how ultimately, to make a healthy decision for myself, I need a moment to breathe and move. This may look different for you, but movement is available always and everywhere, it just takes a little creativity and discipline.

Meal Planning

This is one that has been the hardest for me to implement, but therefor has been the most rewarding. First, I had to realize what works best for me and what I WILL do. You don't want to simplify your life by adding more work. I, personally, LOVE to cook and find it so therapeutic, but I know when I have a long day at work, I want it to be simple, no-fuss ingredients. I found a couple of healthy recipe sources that are my go-to's (another post for another time!) that make this much more exciting as well. On Sunday's (or sometimes another day) I sit down with my planner for the week and go over my schedule for each day. Any day that I know is going to be long and strenuous, I choose a one pot meal. We save one day a week to eat out, so that is always an option too. I continue to plan accordingly, knowing that on the days that are a little shorter and easier I have more time to spend experimenting in the kitchen. I choose usually about 5 recipes (two being simple one pot/pan, two entailing a bit more work but still simple, and one that is new and fun!). I also prep snacks for lunch: energy date balls, hummus, salads, smoothie makings. 

Thoughtful Creativity 

{for no other reason than it is fun and feels good to me} So often I get caught up in accomplishing and only taking action where I can SEE benefits being reaped. This usually ends me up in the space where I am desperately working my way back towards my non-negotiables. Taking time EVERY night for 30 minutes of thoughtful creativity has been huge. Now, mind you, this is not just creativity for the sake of something else, this is creativity because it helps you be more YOU. This also looks different for me day to day and sometimes, if time and energy permits, is longer than 30 minutes. A few of my favorite ways to connect to myself creatively is through

3 pages a night of journaling {I do this when I am already in bed and winding down from my day. I use to get stuck in structuring my journaling too much, but have found a nice rhythm and appreciation for writing about my day}

making jewelry {Not because I own a jewelry business, but because I love playing with beads, stones, and wire wrapping. The design aspect is so fun too!}

reading a novel {I always have a stack of books at my bedside, but find that when I read anything that is self-help or inspiring, it stimulates my brain too much into that accomplishment mode again. So stick with a good story!}.

 

These three things have been game-changers for me. When I realized it could be that natural and it wasn't about DOING more, but just honing in and simplifying my methods, my perspective shifted. I already have everything I NEED and MORE.

What are your non-negotiables and tools you use to reconnect to the goodness you ALREADY HAVE?

Photo by Ross Oscar Knight