Simplify your life

Whether you are contemplating a career change or just looking to jumpstart an existing one, each step outlined in this chapter will lead you to choices of what’s most important to do.   To that end your life will be simpler and clearer.

True simplicity involves much more than just clearing clutter from your home or office.  Authentic simplicity is a rather radical choice.  However, choosing simplicity can be choosing to live in concert with your most desired priorities.  Even smaller acts of living simpler can help you attain focus on what you truly want out of life.

Start with a schedule

Are you so busy you don’t have time to breathe?  One step leads to another, so if you make time simpler to handle you will often find more time to use as you please.

Redefine success

If you have never felt successful, it’s definitely time to redefine success.  It needs to be obvious that success and happiness go together and lie within you.  Make a list of successes you would like to achieve.  Most of all, remember to check the list often and do your best to fulfill it.  If you define success in this way you will never be a failure.

Fix what’s broken

Your car needs a tune up and all the bushes on your property are in dire need of a trimming.  You will expend far less energy fixing the car and trimming the shrubs than you will, avoiding the work and beating yourself up for not doing what needs to be done.  You feel satisfied when the car is running fine and your property is looking great.  In fact, it’s natural then to feel better about yourself.  So set aside the things that need to get done.  Then reserve a quiet evening or weekend afternoon to tackle at least one of the items in your pile.

Preserve in tough times

Any worthwhile plan evolves over time.  Do the work.  Always consider that this work may take longer than you planned for.  Remember that any delay can be an opportunity to reexamine your priorities and get a clearer vision of what is important to you.  Never lose confidence in yourself, for it is that confidence that will help get you through the tough times.

Stick to basics

Keep in mind that practicing the basics will affect every aspect of your life in positive ways.  Strengthen your creative muscles.  List ten things you really enjoy doing.  Attempt to do at least one of those creative activities weekly.  Take pleasure in what you do and know that this activity, enhances your serenity and inspires a more focused approach to life.

Ask better questions / Be aware and listen

Often asking the right questions can lead you to unexpected clarity or even empowering insights.  If you are looking for better options concerning a proposed job, then ask questions geared to generate solutions.  More often than not these will be questions out of the box.  In other words, those that will lead the employer to expanding his viewpoint giving you more assurance that you fully understand the project.

Learn to listen.  Listening will help you to make wiser decisions.  Think about the last conversation you shared.  Did you really listen?

Don’t be impressed with yourself and don’t compare yourself with others.  The best work comes from you being the best you can be; and, as much as you may doubt it, your work never goes unnoticed.

Embrace change

Clinging to the past is usually the worst thing a writer can do.  Even though you might have a certain comfort level about what you already know, it is the nature of life to grow, evolve and change.  Instead of fearing change, embrace it.  Embracing change means that you welcome challenges and new possibilities to improve and broaden the scope of your life.  Explore something new that has always fascinated you.

Challenge your assumptions

The wrong assumptions can close off options and make a project unnecessarily restrictive.  Always stop to take a look at something differently.  Sometimes things just require an attitude adjustment.  You will find you always have choices and often it can be as simple as a change of attitude or perspective.

Stand on your integrity

True integrity is doing the right thing even when no one is watching.  Be true to yourself and this will clear the way to make the most of your talents.  Hard work reveals results that propel your lifelong desires.

Take time for renewal

We live in a workaholic society.  Allow yourself time to daydream, to mull over the events of the week and to review priorities.  Love what you do and do what you love.  Appreciate your life’s daily activities and you will find riches enough.  Learn to relax without having to be indolent.  Never stress over decision making and you will simplify your life.

Forming good habits

Good habits contribute to continued successes.  Get rid of your bad habits.  First, make a strong commitment to do so.  Focus on what it is you want to accomplish: “I will be more positive!” as opposed to what you want to avoid: “I don’t want to complain.”  Second, measure your daily, weekly and monthly progress.  For example, if you want to be more positive then observe how many times you turned a complaint into an affirmative statement.  Third, be proactive.  Keep at it and refuse to get discouraged.  Pay your dues with assignments or practice every single day.

Take a risk

You have to step up, step out and get more involved if you want to have an impact on your life.  You’ve already shown the desire to do this by being here.  Keep this initiative moving you forward and don’t let the fear of failing stop you.   Take a risk on an assignment which you think is more than you can handle.  Whatever the outcome, you will learn something new and valuable about yourself.

Goal setting

Write out goals for this week, this month and the coming year.  Then make sure each day you are on track to achieve your goals.  Each week should include doing something that helps obtain the monthly goals and each month include the things that help reach the yearly goals.

Just remember it takes courage to simplify your life.  You must believe in yourself enough to make those really hard decisions.  You have to be brave enough to honestly say “no more” to bad habits which hold you back.  Just as wanting enough to say “yes” to the learning of new skills and evolving into a more demanding writer.  All the while, you will be creating a more balanced and fulfilling life.

An old wise tale

All your life you’ve been told an old wise tale.  The anecdote that: “seeing is believing”.  Change your life by changing your thinking. I tell you that you and only you have the power to do just that.  Only then will you be able to discover the real truth that: “Believing is Seeing!”