the simplify guy

Daily acts of simplification

Month: October, 2012


Since reinstating my daily reminder entitled “Daily Act of Simplification”, I am pleased to report that the simplifying process has gathered renewed momentum. I don’t think any of the individual improvements have been particularly ground breaking, but the cumulative effect is one of increasing satisfaction. Discarding unworn clothes, rearranging the kitchen, clearing the last of the ‘unpacking pile’ from when we moved into our house, selling a load of camera equipment – all pretty easy stuff but its made a big difference. And so we continue! Upcoming planned activities include using an online service to turn stacks of old CDs and DVDs into a little bit of cash and, more importantly, more space. Do I really need the Best of Bananarama on CD?? Do I need CD’s at all? Hmm…

I am also currently reading “The Laws of Subtraction” by Matthew E May, a book that I’ve been waiting for which has finally been released. Once I’ve finished it I’ll do a review…needless to say it will be a good review, I’m thoroughly enjoying it so far!


Back on Track

Hello everyone. I am very conscious that it has been two months since I past posted, and thought it was about time I provided an update.

As previously described, after Day 100 of the Daily Acts of Simplification, I decided to cease forcing myself to write about a daily act as this was becoming a little burdensome. I was confident that new habits had been formed, and the simplification process would continue without too much deliberate effort. I also wanted to spend some time tackling some larger things, stuff that needed to be made more simple that couldn’t be ticked off in one day. I also reflected on my piece on Values, and decided that it had been a while since I reviewed my own values/roles/goals, and took my own advice and had a good review.

The only part of that which didn’t work out as planned was the new simplifying habit. In addition to not writing about daily simplifications, I deleted the recurring daily task on my to-do list which prompted me to simplify something, deeming it unnecessary. However, whilst I was finding that whilst I was still looking at the world through simplifying eyes, I wasn’t actually taking action as often as I would have liked. In fact I’m quite embarrassed by how little I did! It seems that deliberately planning in your important tasks each day is the only way to get them done, no matter how automatic you believe them to be.

So as a result of all that, the daily recurring task marked “Perform Daily Act of Simplification” is back in, and I am using my own How to Simplify Your Life findings to resume momentum.

With regards to the review of my values/roles/goals, I have renewed my vows to my values (they hadn’t changed), trimmed my list of roles, and drawn up a fresh set of goals. These now inform my weekly and daily task planning to ensure I am focussed on what is important, whilst still chipping away everything else.

As an example of the rebirth of the Daily Acts, I was standing at the petrol pump the other week, filling up the tank as usual, and I found myself doing something that I have always done without thinking about it, and left myself bemused at the realisation. For some reason, at the end of the fill, I always to try to get the petrol pump to stop at a number of whole pounds e.g. £64.00. I do a series of short squeezes as the next whole pound (after the first tank-full-click) nears and try to stop it on the button. If I go too much and end up with £64.01 I’ll try to squeeze another £0.99 in so that I can finish even. Why on earth did I do this? I KNOW lots of people do it too, I can watch them all around at the pumps! Some vague idea that my accounts will look tidier with whole pounds? Pass. It wasn’t even like it was a fun game (maybe it was when I first started driving!). Anyway, that habit was cancelled with immediate effect. Fill until it’s full, then stop. Simple!