I’ve been cleaning the windows (so to speak) of my life to let a bright 2013 shine through. Part of this is a natural design-year end, year beginning. This year, however, clearing the clutter feels even more urgent. Jan.1 I take off for a 6 week international trip and I’ve committed to travel with only a tablet and my phone while keeping business as usual for most of my trip. This trip is giving me amazing perspective about what to hold on to and what to let go as 2012 comes to an end. In an effort to capture my strategy and repeat it every year, here are some of the steps I’m taking to lighten up in every way:
1. Closet Rule-not just for closets anymore. That rule about if you haven’t worn something for a year-get rid of it? I’m applying that to bookmarks on my browser, folders on my computer, contacts in my phone and email, paper that I store, subscriptions, research to read, etc.
2. Paperless Automation. I’ve been pretty paperless thanks to our nomadic lifestyle, but international travel takes it up a notch. I’ve consolidated my “office” to a carry on, a tablet, a phone and a flash drive. I can literally work from anywhere on the planet. I’ve got virtual tools for hosting webinars and coaching calls from any country-I’ve gone global. I find that I think really hard before I print anymore and much prefer to find a way to put whatever it is in a user friendly on line format. I take advantage of virtual tools. My favorite right now is Go Payment. A client’s payment can be processed and sent to my Quick Books in a minute. All ready for the accountant at year end. DONE!
3. Reality Check. I admit I like to save things in case I need them in the future. Maybe it’s an article with really interesting facts. It could be a product I want to try. Maybe it’s an email with a resource I really want to come back to later. I’ve learned to be more honest with myself. Is this the time? Will I actually come back to it in the next 30 days? If so, I make a plan for exactly when and how I will start using “it” right now. If not, delete. I have faith that resources will come to me, even come back to me when I need them. It’s ok to let go.
4. One Hour Rule. My intention is to create a process for everything I do in my life (cook dinner, write a program, exercise, sending holiday greetings, feed the animals, my wellness routine, you name it) that limits my time investment to one hour or less. I am fine tuning my awareness to notice the things that take longer, figure out why and make a new plan. No more time spent…looking for something, redoing anything, catching up on a big pile of…whatever. I’m letting go of the “shoulds” that just take too long. My time is too precious. What do I spend my time on? ME! Indulgence! Family! Friends! Living Life! Travel! Fun! Joy! Self Growth!
5. Nothing Is Permanent. An activity, person, place, thing that was fulfilling to me this year might not be to me next year. And vice versa-I might not be fulfilling to it, them, the place anymore. Some people and things hold their value. I’m not saying I drop everything. I do recognize that paradigms shift and I let go.
This has been an evolution for me and I want to acknowledge the role this trip has played in my polishing my practices. There was a time when I wasn’t totally comfortable with change. Now I thrive on it as it refines how I live my life.
What does that commercial say? “Normal has changed again.” Love it!
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