Feeling Overwhelmed? 14 Ways To Simplify Your Life

Life moves fast, doesn’t it? It often feels like you’re trying to keep two dozen plates spinning at the same time.

Heaven forbid one of those plates start to wobble. You know, when you have to flat out run to reach it in time before it topples to the floor, taking the next plate and the entire row with it.

Life can sometimes feel like you’re constantly babysitting those darn plates when all you really want to do is experience what’s beyond them. You don’t want to live your life fighting fires and preventing mini-catastrophes on a near daily basis.

How would your life change if you had less plates spinning? It would take the pressure off, right?

See, everything you’re doing right now in your life is a plate that you’re spinning. If you’re feeling burnt out, frustrated and overwhelmed it’s time to simplify, or to keep with our analogy, remove some plates.

Here are fourteen ways to simplify your life.

Assess your commitments

Aside from non-negotiable commitments like work, school, and medical appointments, can you confidently list all the other commitments that are adding to your overall stress?

If you feel like there isn’t enough time in the day and you’re overwhelmed with all those places you have to go and all those people you have to see, consider reducing how many activities you commit yourself to.

This could mean reducing how many clubs you attend, reducing any volunteering activities, and could even mean setting tighter boundaries with that high maintenance friend or co-worker. We all know one of these people and it can be all too easy to get into a situation where you find yourself at the receiving end of their constant demands.

Have a social media fast

How many social media platforms are you signed up to? Facebook? Twitter? Instagram? Pinterest? More? It can be overwhelming trying to keep up with all of them at the same time. You can find yourself scrolling through news feed after news feed and before you know it, a couple of hours have passed.

If you’re like a lot of other people, you have your phone close to you when you sleep and browsing social media is the last thing you do at night and the first thing you access when you wake up.

I challenge you to fast from social media for a full 24 hour period. You’ll be wondering what to do with yourself. This is a perfect opportunity to do something for yourself.

If you can’t stomach a 24-hour social media fast, consider putting your phone on the other side of your bedroom so you don’t feel tempted to stay awake scrolling.

List your three most important things

Write down three things that are most important to you in your life. Now use these to guide future decisions. If you’re engaging in activities and people that don’t support these three outcomes, it might be worth re-considering your commitment.

Schedule non-negotiable appointments

Do you keep your up and coming appointments in your head? That causes unnecessary stress. Keep things simple by pre-scheduling your annual medical appointments and other up and coming events on a calendar. You can use something physical like a diary or your phone. I use Google Calendar. It’s free and easy to use.

Just say no!

say no

This can be uncomfortable for some people but if you don’t get into the practice of saying no more often, people will continue to take chunks out of your time.

See Also: The Courage To Say No

Reduce media consumption

We are bombarded all day with the latest news, breaking news, shock-horror, and general negativity. It can feel extremely overwhelming to be at the receiving end of a seemingly never ending stream of doom and gloom. You can remedy this by reducing your intake of mainstream news either from the television, newspapers, radio, or the internet.

Purge toxic relationships

We all know people who are difficult to be around. People who are chaotic, negative and demanding on your energy supply. If you want to simplify your life, it’s best to distance yourself from these types of people by setting personal boundaries.

Often, this is ill received because these people take it as a criticism of character and feed off drama. It’s best to either distance yourself or let go completely.

Get rid of your ‘stuff’

Have you ever felt you just have too much ‘stuff’? That pile of books stood in the corner of your living room, those impulsive eBay buys, that pile of clothes that won’t fit inside your already fit-to-burst wardrobe? You might not realise it but clutter like this is ‘visually noisy’ and causes subconscious stress.

Make a list of items that you really don’t want or need and either sell them, bin them, or donate them. You’ll really appreciate your new, fresh environment.

De-clutter your digital space

How does it feel when you check your email and see 3,406 emails in your inbox? Whilst a lot of it is spam, you know there are conversations in there from 18 months ago that are no longer relevant.

You probably have apps on your phone or tablet device that you haven’t used in a long while as well. De-clutter your devices of unused apps, old messages and don’t be shy about deleting things if you aren’t sure. Ask yourself if you really want to keep something. If it’s not an ‘absolutely!’ straight away, it needs to go.

Scrutinize your finances

This is a great exercise to be leaner with your spending. Simply take your latest bank statement and skim through it to find any subscriptions or recurring payments. If you haven’t used the service in a while or don’t really want it any more, then cancel. Use the money for something meaningful.

Limit time spent communicating

If you’re like I used to be, you read emails as soon as they hit your phone. You stop whatever it is you’re doing and read them, right? That’s a massive productivity killer and leads to a feeling of frustration that can be overwhelming.

The solution is to check your emails twice a day. Once in the morning and one in the afternoon. That’s it. If you really can’t wait that long, you can check them at lunch time.

Start walking in nature

I don’t know of a better way to de-stress than a good walk in nature, phone on silent, and technology unplugged. It’s a great way to be mindful as you hear the sounds of nature like the brushing of the leaves and the chatter of the birds. You’ll feel calmer, lighter and re-charged.

Start a meditation practice

practice meditation

Setting aside just 10 minutes every day, either in the morning or in the evening, is a wonderful way to bring calm and clarity into your life. If you plan on implementing a social media fast, this is a perfect time to start.

See Also: Questions and Answers: A Beginners Guide to Meditation

Ask yourself this question

“Is this going to simplify my life or make it more overwhelming?”

Asking yourself this question can guide you in the right direction when you find yourself faced with a set of decisions. Follow your gut feeling on this, too, It’s rarely wrong!

Feeling overwhelmed is downright miserable.

It sucks when you have more going on that you can handle.

You don’t want a life like this. You want to feel in control so you can make progress and feel fulfilled.

My challenge to you: Choose one of the tips above and implement it today. Then tomorrow pick another one. See how different you feel after a week of taking consistent action toward simplifying your life.

Let’s see how many spinning plates you can remove from your hectic life!

Starting from today!

I know you can do it.

You’ve got this!

 

The post Feeling Overwhelmed? 14 Ways To Simplify Your Life appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

http://ift.tt/2m40IPh

Building in Thailand Transformed by EKAR Architects

This building located in Surat Thani, Thailand, was transformed into a home and at the same time the workplace of two brothers, one of them veterinarian and the other pharmacist, by EKAR Architects. It was in 2016 when this remodeling was completed making that the space of 480 square meters meet the owners expectations who wanted to turn the place, which was once bustling and in poor condition, in a..

More…

Just outside of Washington, D.C., in Virginia, Great Falls Park…

Just outside of Washington, D.C., in Virginia, Great Falls Park is the perfect place to get some exercise. There’s hiking, biking, fishing, climbing and boating opportunities. But, however fast you’re moving, the stunning view of the Potomac River crashing over the falls will stop you in your tracks. Photo courtesy of Jose Torres.

6 Ways to Recognise a Really Bad Manager

Managers come in all shapes and sizes and from all walks of life. Unfortunately, not everyone has had the benefit of obtaining the necessary training to lead a team. Many bosses just do it because, well, they have to. When interacting with staff, it’s often their personalities that can dictate how they deal with their team.

Do you recognise any of these unhappy management traits?

The People Pleaser

Cast your mind back to Michael Scott from The Office and you will instantly recognise the type. People Pleasers have a deep insecurity and an ingrained desire to be liked by everyone they work with. Uncomfortable of exerting authority, they tend to avoid conflict and unpopular decisions preferring to be everybody’s friend.

As a result of their vague, noncommittal and ultimately ineffectual leadership style, no one really knows where they stand, who is held accountable, or if any progress is actually being made. The danger with this type of management is that the strongest personalities in the team will simply take over and make decisions instead without being held in check.

The Micromanager

The Micromanager is a perfectionist and control freak who wants to be involved in everything. No detail is too small, no activity too mundane, and no decision too minor for him/her to step away. The need to micromanage stems from a firm conviction that the manager is the only person who can do the job properly.

This distrust displayed towards anyone else’s skills and decision-making abilities makes the Micromanager a hard worker, but one who finds it hard to delegate. Often, these are people who have been promoted within the organisation, rising from functional/technical roles to managerial positions where a little more overview is required – and they’re struggling to stand back from the day-to-day detail.

See Also: What Managers Should Know About Motivating Their Team

The Seagull Manager

seagull manager

You’ve no doubt heard the analogy: he flies in, makes a lot of noise, craps on everything, and flies off. The opposite management style of a Micromanager, the Seagull Manager pays takes no interest whatsoever in the daily running of the project. He’ll be there at the beginning with a vague brief, but then is unavailable for long periods until he drops in at short notice and criticises everything and everyone for doing it all wrong.

Communication skills are not the Seagull Manager’s forte; This manager expects other team members to interpret his unclear directions correctly (perhaps using mind reading skills?) and are flabbergasted and highly critical when this approach doesn’t achieve the desired results. Projects tend to succeed in spite of the manager, usually involving superhuman efforts and oodles of goodwill by the team.

The Screaming Toddler

screaming toddler

This is the boss who throws a tantrum at the slightest problem. If anything goes wrong at all, however trivial, it’s a complete disaster. From forgetting to put sugar in his coffee to losing a major client, it’s always the end of the world. Shouting has become a habit.

Somehow, this type of manager lacks the ability to differentiate between what’s a small deal or a big deal. What’s worse, the verbal explosion will always be aimed at someone in the team, possibly even the entire team; the perceived ineptitude is never the boss’ fault.

Fear is the overriding emotion here. The team has to operate on the basis of second guessing their boss’ mood and make sure every detail is 150% correct to avoid a full-volume verbal dressing down.

The Best Friend

When you spend every working day with the same people, it’s hard not to develop a bond with them. But what if the line between professional and personal friendship is crossed? The Best Friend manager knows no boundaries, and will offload personal problems without hesitation, expecting individual staff members to manage his emotional state of mind.

This is incredibly draining on team members. When the boss’ bad day becomes your bad day, and their private troubles become your troubles, you take on the extra role of sounding board or and counsellor, which certainly won’t have been in your job description.

The Mushroom Manager

Another appropriate image: keep them in the dark and feed them manure. Another control freak, the Mushroom Manager will divulge information on a ‘need to know’ basis only. Project or company goals are hazy, budgets are kept under lock and key, and top down sharing of information is restricted.

Whether out of a desire to further their own careers or because their mantra ‘knowledge is power’ leads them to see anyone in the team as a potential threat, when a mushroom manager is in charge, communication channels between employees and manager are deliberately kept to a minimum. There may be a chosen ‘manager’s pet’ employee who is given access to insider information along with the best jobs, but the rest of the team is effectively ignored.

See Also: Four ways of effective Management: How to achieve Extraordinary results from Ordinary people

If you are ever in a management position, don’t forget this list of bad managers and avoid these same pitfalls.

The post 6 Ways to Recognise a Really Bad Manager appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

http://ift.tt/2lkf6za

BIO-architects Build a Modular Cottage for a Young Couple in Russia

This fantastic modular cottage covering an area of 185 m2 was built by BIO-architects for a young couple in Russia. It is located in a natural environment, surrounded by dense vegetation so its glass walls are presented as a stage through which we can enjoy the outside while sitting comfortably in the interior with the warmth of the fireplace. In its exterior, wood predominates, and glass walls that reflect the..

More…

What Can Employers Do For Employee Appreciation Day?

Your company is full of assets, I know. But there is one asset in particular that puts the soul into your business and without it you would be overrun and, almost certainly destined to fail. That asset is, of course, your employees!

Showing your employees your appreciation for their hard work and emphasizing how important they are to your company is vitally important for employee morale. After-all, by increasing their self-worth, you’re also increasing job satisfaction and motivation.

One great way to show your employees how much they mean to your business is by celebrating Employee Appreciation Day this 3rd March.

Although it’s not considered an official day in the US, there are plenty of employers who do follow it and make it an “official” day for their company. If you struggle to engage with your employees on a regular basis because of busy schedules, then use this day, along with other employers and business owners around the world, to show your employees how valued they are.

Celebrating the day is easy too, so you needn’t worry about it causing too much fuss or taking people away from their work.

Here are some simple and fun ideas for you to give back to your employees, wherever you are in the world.

Early Finish

Employee Appreciation Day is celebrated on the first Friday of March every year. This is the perfect day to let your employees finish up a little earlier. You can, for instance, let a 9-5 worker go around 1pm so they get a half day off and an extended weekend. Although you might “lose” half a day of working time, you’ll certainly gain productivity elsewhere, as this UK study shows.

Office Lunch

office lunch

By far one of the simplest ways to show appreciation to your employees is by providing lunch over an extended period. It’s not very often an entire company will be able to enjoy their lunch time together, so for a couple of hours, just turn off all phones and let everyone enjoy a lunchtime together.

An office lunch is also perfect if it’s too late to make preparations for an elaborate gathering. You can simply call your local restaurants and get delicious food delivered.

After Work Drinks

after work drinks

Often, your employees won’t be very happy if they don’t get a chance to unwind. Arranging an after-work drink is an easy and effective way to allow your employees to get some free, relaxing time to unwind and socialize with fellow workers.

Put together a kitty so every employee can get a drink or two on the business and allow everyone to have some fun while feeling appreciated. Come Monday, they’ll be feeling motivated and ready to go.

Team Building Activity Day

Perhaps one of the most effective ways to boost team morale is through a team building activity day. Not only will this feel like a fun holiday for your staff, but it also builds essential skills for your employees such as team work, making it a win-win situation for your company.

You might want to research your employee’s interests first though, as although you might enjoy extreme water sports, not everyone else will. There are, however, hundreds of choices when it comes to activity days with everything from paintballing to escape rooms. Each one has its own merits and all are perfect for showing-off your employee appreciation.

See Also: What Managers Should Know About Motivating Their Team

 

The post What Can Employers Do For Employee Appreciation Day? appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

http://ift.tt/2mA0IVj