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Published June 28, 2013 in Healthy Living
A Time For New Beginnings
 
Ways to break bad habitsBy Jill Armayor for DRS Health

The New Year is often a time of reflection and one to take stock of the aspects in life that need somewhat of an overhaul. All of us desire to have a more simplified life, giving us the ability to enjoy the little pleasures that surround us each and every day. With the constant inundation of worries, interruption and stress in our lives, sometimes it’s difficult to control life’s constant noise and utter lack of peace and tranquility. As the New Year approaches and passes by, keep these 10 ideas in mind as you undertake the endeavor of simplifying your life in 2012:

1) Let bygones be bygones.

A grudge against another can strangle you. It is time to let it go. Holding a grudge can make you harbor bitterness and anger, two emotions that can zap your energy in a hurry. Wouldn’t it be much more productive to use the time it takes to think about that person to put toward positive thoughts and great ideas?

2) Organize your workspace.

By organizing all of your paperwork into a logical filing system, you will spend much less time each day attempting to locate the documents that you need on hand. Spend some time organizing your computer files as well, so that you can access anything with a few clicks of your mouse.

3) Donate unused items.

You probably have many items lying around the house that you don’t use anymore, taking up space in your closets, cupboards and shelves. There are plenty of charities in your area that are in dire need of clothes, linens, kitchen appliances and more. Donate it and take the write off. If you are not sure if you want to donate a particular item, put it into a box marked, “maybe.” If you find that you don’t need it in the next 12 months, donate it next year.

4) Learn to say “no.”

You may find that you are being strangled by all of the commitments you have made, whether it is extra projects at work, volunteer work, carpool or supporting the commitments of your family members or friends. If you find that you spend more time in the car than you do in your bed, it may be time to cut down on some of your obligations, by passing the baton to somebody else.

5) Keep the incoming paper in check.

How fast do you find that mail, receipts, catalogs and magazines pile up in the nooks and crannies of your home? Designate a place to put all incoming paper until you have time to go through it. Develop a place for bills, receipts, coupons, magazines and catalogs close-by for one-step filing. Keep a trash can nearby as well, so that all trash can instantly be thrown away, rather than accumulating on your counter.

6) Make a “to-do” list.

Keep a small notebook as an informal “to do” list and write the things that need to be done, no matter how small. This exercise will help you de-clutter your brain with all of the little “to-do” items that you are reminded of every day. Keep the notebook by your bed at night and write down anything that is keeping you awake. Knowing that you won’t forget about it will give you the peace of mind you need to get back to sleep.

7) Enlist the spam filter on your inbox.

You would probably be shocked if you knew how much time you were spending each year deleting spam out of your inbox. The “help” function that you find when you are logged onto your e-mail can help you set up appropriate spam filters to delete junk e-mail.

8) Quit procrastinating.

The stress of meeting a last-minute deadline can be nerve-wracking. If you have a big project, divide it up into easily manageable segments that you can schedule on your calendar throughout the allotted period of time.

9) Don’t let things fall through the cracks.

Keep a written record of the items that you delegate to someone else, especially at work. Since it is your responsibility to see them through, keep them on your “to-do” list until you get confirmation that the job is complete to your satisfaction. This will prevent you from having to perform damage control later on.

10) Employ organizational containers.

Clutter in plain sight, in your home or in your office can diminish your energy and amplify your stress. There is no such thing as “organized chaos.” Every item in your home or office should have a “home”. Use stackable bins, file drawers, or even shoe boxes to organize and store the items that are usually piled up on counters, shelves and floor spaces.
 
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