Welcome to Part 2 of Secrets to Simple Living – 23 Minimalist Tips. If you’ve always wanted to adopt simple living, but are not sure how you can start, my 23 minimalist tips will help you get more out of life with less stress and fuss.
Part 1 of Secrets to Simple Living- 23 Minimalist Tips has 8 actionable tips for you to start your minimalism journey today.
#9 Simple Dinners
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I don’t enjoy cooking. As a co-worker succinctly puts it, “it takes time to prepare meals, but the food disappears in a jiffy.”
Enter Mr MMT, the knight in shining armor.
He loves experimenting with food recipes and has his own meal plans.
My contribution is to prepare vegetables for his culinary skills.
Now, many of my co-workers are envious when they learn of this.
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Another way is to opt for quality frozen foods.
We keep pre-packaged free range chicken nuggets and tenders, crumbed fish fillets and southern fried chicken on standby.
They do cost more, but they save your sanity and time, which is priceless. One cost saving measure is to buy them during sales.
When we (ahem, Mr MMT) cook foods from scratch, he does them in bulk.
We then apportion them for at least 2 more meals in separate containers. Then we pop them in the freezer and reheat them for weeknight meals.
#10 Simple Leisure
Do you really need to go to another city for special concerts and leisure events? Or go shopping in mega malls?
Or watch Netflix and go to the movies?
Why not explore the natural world around you. They’re right at your city’s backyard. Explore nature trails and public gardens. When was the last time you visited them?
My family has opted to go for nature walks during weekends instead of visiting shopping malls, unless we need to get some essentials.
Just an hour of nature walk feels like we’ve spent half a day enjoying ourselves. We feel refreshed, happy and peaceful after our nature rambles. Have you noticed this strange phenomenon?
In stark contrast, the time we used to spend in shopping malls left us feeling unfulfilled and frustrated, as if something important was missing in our lives.
Don’t believe me? Try experiencing nature and all its wonders yourself.
#11 Simple Morning Routine
Spend a bit of time to think of a simple morning routine. You can write it down and refer to it if this routine is new.
This is how I simplify mine.
-I’ll drink a glass of very warm water first thing in the morning.
-I’ll take the same breakfast of porridge – oats with one date, blueberries and a tablespoon of olive oil.
#12 Simple Evening Routine
I keep to the same dental and skincare routine each evening.
Just before bedtime, I’ll do my usual ‘floss and brush my teeth’ routine.
And before that, I’ll have my facial wash and apply my usual Antipodes Divine Facial Oil and Day Cream moisturizer.
Having used them for several years, I highly recommend the Antipodes brand as their organic products have been scientifically been proven to work. Plus they’re eco-friendly.
Then just before getting into bed, I’ll apply my organic Lavender essential oil on my wrist.
My wonderful bottle of organic Lavender oil (10 ml) has me lasted for 3 years now, despite applying it almost every night.
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#13 Simple Makeup Routine
I only stick to the bare minimum.
That means using my Antipodes mineral foundation and Antipodes lipstick.
Yes, there’s just one lipstick in one color.
In the past, I had several lipsticks which meant more time thinking about which colors would suit my outfits.
Are you horrified?
There’s no mention of eye makeup, eyeliner or eye shadow.
My philosophy is: The more you put on, the more you need to take off at the end of the day.
#14 Simple Housework
Simplify your housework.
I simplify mine by vacuuming once a week or even once a fortnight.
If I’m busy, I just cover heavy traffic areas like the hallway, the lounge and the kitchen. I give bedrooms a miss.
As for laundry, use the sniff test.
Only wash clothes when they start to smell less clean. My work clothes are usually set aside for another day of the week or for outings.
Never do your washing every day. If the weather is not conducive, postpone your washing for a sunny day, and always wait for a full load before you start your washer.
#15 Simple Technology
Turn off and tune out digital clutter.
I find that being continuously present on Facebook messenger is stressful.
Likewise, don’t hang on to your phone for dear life during meals. And texting while driving? It’s very dangerous! Don’t do it!
#16 Avoid multitasking
Many of us think that doing several tasks at the same time will surely help us get more things done in less time.
In theory, it sounds brilliant, saving us time and getting more things done.
But I must admit that my own multi-tasking endeavors left a trail of incomplete tasks and embarrassing mistakes.
If you’re doing this, stop. You’ll only end up feeling frustrated and feeling that things are moving beyond your control.
The greatest harm lies in making us lose our self- esteem.
#17 A Simple ‘No’
Never feel bad about saying ’No’.
If you prefer to have a quiet evening after work instead of attending a BBQ, be firm and polite about turning it down.
Don’t feel that you need to please everyone. You need to look after yourself.
Recently, I said ‘No’ to a work lunch. It wasn’t easy as I had to weigh the consequences of offending my co-workers. My team leader accepted my explanation and I appreciated her understanding.
Don’t take on more than you can chew. Never be compelled into saying ‘Yes’ to more duties in your workplace, if you know you cannot cope with the additional workload.
#18 Simple Breaks
Give yourself short mini breaks during the day. Tear your eyes away from the screen and minimize eye strain by looking at something elsewhere further away.
Or head to the kitchen and get a cup of coffee. Or go to the bathroom and freshen up by splashing some water on your face.
Mr MMT does not drink coffee and finds that water refreshes him well.
Set your alarm to hourly intervals to remind yourself to take regular breaks.
#19 Simple Attitude
Don’t take everything too seriously.
I used to get upset easily when things are not done in specific ways, and this was only relating to housework!
Taking a simple and relaxed attitude, even when things are not done perfectly, frees our mind and keeps us healthy in the long run.
#20 Simple Perspective
I used to rant about never-ending tasks that always seem to grow longer, but Mr MMT kindly advised me to change my perspective.
Why don’t we take this chance to praise ourselves on what we’ve accomplished, instead of grumbling about the tons of things we still need to do?
How about rewarding ourselves with a piece of chocolate, by savoring a glass of wine in the evening or by watching a comedy?
Do a little something every day to make yourself happy.
#21 Simple Grateful Heart
Be content and be grateful for what you have. This is the essence of true joy.
#22 Simple Needs
Do you really need the latest smartphone with those special features?
#23 Simple Focus
Avoid distractions as much as possible.
Don’t try to complete your work while having loud pulsating music on. It just won’t work.
Our brain finds it hard to concentrate on more than one thing at a time.
Some folks claim it helps them work better. But this article confirms that loud noises affects our performance negatively.
#24 Simple Minimalist Living
Minimize buying things for your home.
Heard of the ‘One in One Out’ system?
How about taking it to another level?
If you buy an item, take out two items from your home, by donating them to a charity or selling them on sites like eBay.
Now that you have these 24 simple living ideas at your fingertips, make a start on simple living today. Take up one or several of these tips and you’ll soon experience the wonderful difference it makes in your life.
My hope is for you to live a meaningful life filled with simple habits that bring you happiness.
This collection of 100 Frugal Joys to Enjoy Life to the Fullest will surely inspire you to reach the next level.
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