Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Julia's Day 72: In which I review the last few months


Christa, Day 72: Is This the End of Is It the Beginning?

As I said yesterday, while thinking about today, I can't believe that the project is over. Getting all the way to today from Day 1 has been an interesting journey - and sometimes a rushed one. I think I had more doubled up days that anyone else who made it all the way through. Anyone else being Julia *waves* at Jewels and Smiths. I wish I had some sort of prize to give you for walking down the Simple Living Manifesto item by item with me. And heck, I'd give everyone else who participated, whether a lot or a little, a prize, too, if I could.

Because what a great endeavor, even if in the end all one did was think about each day's simplification idea!

Today's idea? It's refreshingly simple, where other items on the list have been worryingly complex in some cases. Day 72, the last day, offers up a road map we can all use moving forward to ensure we don't allow ourselves to fall into the trap of increasing, useless complexity in the present or in the future.
Always ask: Will this simplify my life? If the answer is no, reconsider.
First, l think I'll ask did this simplify my life... I think the answer is yes. I sincerely believe that I made changes during this project that I would not have made otherwise.

For example, I made the difficult decision to walk away from a job I'd been doing more or less happily for six years because the work and the time involved were no longer worth the pay. I put in the effort to get rid of larger furniture that was taking up space in my tiny house. I started working more regularly on my business side project in the hope that it will someday allow me to spend more time with my family and less time working for someone else. With help from my Internet friends, I have started to experiment with meal planning. I'm still working on being present more when it counts and driving more slowly and spending quiet time doing nothing other than enjoying the feeling of being alive. I'm still in the process of decluttering and destressing, and I don't know if I'll ever get the hang of single-tasking...

But I'm working on it. I'm still working on everything, beginning with Day 1. I've heard it said that it takes 21 days to create a habit - which means I still have a ways to go with some of the later list items!

This may not gel with your experience, but from the beginning, my assumption was that everyone would approach the 72 Ideas in 72 Days Project differently and that everyone would walk away from it with different things.That's cool. Because that was the point. We all need to learn different things, after all. In the end, I plan to continuing applying the lessons I have learned over the past 72 days and hope everyone else will, too.

Moving forward, will that simplify my life? I think it will.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Christa, Day 70 and Day 71:

I can't believe we are one day away from the final day. When I first decided to do the 72 Ideas in 72 Days Project, 72 days seemed like such a long time. And such a lot of simplification! But I guess I'll ruminate on all of that tomorrow. Because right now, I am a day behind! Here's Day 70's voluntary simplicity idea:
Leave space around things in your day. Whether they’re appointments, or things you need to do, don’t stack them back-to-back. Leave a little space between things you need to do, so you will have room for contingencies, and you’ll go through your day much more relaxed.
I think I do this? Notice the question mark. The confusion stems from the fact that I don't lay out specific times to do specific things. So you might say that time for contingencies is built right in since overall my schedule is flexible. Then again, you might say there is not time for contingencies built in because I tend to have a lot on my to-do list. THEN THEN AGAIN, my to-do list is often for the week and not for the day, allowing me an even greater degree of flexibility. Making the whole thing entirely too complicated for a simplicity exercise. Let's just call this one done.

And on to today's idea:
Live closer to work. This might mean getting a job closer to your home, or moving to a home closer to your work. Either will do much to simplify your life.
I live eight minutes away from work by car, which includes some stop signs and traffic lights. Add daycare drop off to that, and I'm still close since P.'s daycare is just walking distance away. Biking to work took, oh, fifteen minutes or so? Compared to my husband, I live quite close to work. However, I am currently trying to convince my boss to let me work AT HOME, which would have me living as close to work as is ever possible. Working where I live, aka living at work. I am okay with that. In fact, I love working at home, in isolation. You might say it is my favorite way to work! So far, I have been allowed to do a test run of working from home on Mondays and Fridays. I think it's working out well, but also have yet to hear feedback from the bossman. We shall see.

See you tomorrow for the big finale!

Julia's Day 71: In which total upheaval causes me to succeed

It took moving nearly 3,000 miles to do it, but the family does, in fact, now live closer to work. Huzzah!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Julia's Day 70: In which the baby makes things super easy

I got really good at leaving space around things in my day when Miss K decided to be pretty much the most schedule resistant human in space. Kinda like her daddy, come to think of it.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Julia's Day 69: In which I vehemently protest

I perceive inherent flaws in minimalist zen to done that make me want to run in the other direction. AND SO I SAY NO!

Christa, Day 69: Well, THAT Was Easy!

Use a minimalist productivity system. The minimal Zen To Done is all you need. Everything else is icing.
Heh. Leo has described exactly how I keep my busy, crazy life in line!