A Simple Approach to Living With Less

In Search of More Time

For me, the most important benefit born out of minimalism is TIME. Less time spent on the things that aren’t important and more time for the things that really matter.

Less of this:

  • Less things to clean
  • Less clutter to put away
  • Less running around to children’s activities
  • Less shopping
  • Less fussing at the kids

More of this:

  • More time as a family
  • More weekends for fun
  • More dates with your husband
  • More play time with the kids
  • More focus on things that matter
  • More rest and relaxation

So how do we lose the “less” and gain the “more?” We start by making choices and we look for the domino effect that comes from making those choices. Start by asking yourself, “Would I rather spend my time picking up 100 Hot Wheels and a pile of naked Barbie dolls or would I rather spend that time with my kids at the park?” When we choose one thing over another, that choice has a domino effect. If we get rid of that pile of cars and naked Barbies, then we spend less time picking up toys, and we end up having that extra time to take our kids to the park. It’s amazing how the small pockets of time start to add up when we aren’t giving it away to frivolous things.

I use the phrase “Prioritize, then Organize” a lot lately. It makes it so much easier to organize something if the important things have been given priority. Then the little things just fall into place easier. That principle applies to time as well. If family time is given priority, then it’s easier to make decisions on what to spend the rest of your time on.

In our house, having our kids involved in lots of outside activities like sports and countless birthday parties for other kids typically don’t make the cut when it comes to prioritizing our time. I don’t expect that things will always stay the same in that aspect. But if you don’t make a conscious choice in how you spend your time, then plenty of other things will come up to snatch it from you.

We can’t create any extra time in a day or add any extra years to our life. We can’t slow down how fast our kids are growing even if we wish we had more time to spend with them. We can’t put off spending time with our spouse until later so we can focus on the kids now. It’s all in how we choose to spend the time we have.

When it comes to time…Less really IS more.

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Article originally published on 09/23/2010

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Comments

  1. I came across your blog today. Incidentally, I’ve also become aware the minimalist trend today. Your journey is one I need to go on. There are times I literally have a compulsion to grab a garbage bag and throw toys, stuff on the countertop, on the table, etc. into the bag and throw it out the door! But I’ll take the more sane approach, and declutter step by step. 🙂

    • Faith Janes says:

      Oh I totally understand the feeling of wanting to just grab a bag and attack a pile of mess! Sometimes that approach works works very well instead of over thinking things. No matter what your approach is, the outcome feels great! Good luck on your journey and thanks for reading!!

  2. I just came across your blog on Joshua Becker’s comments. You and I seem to be on a same track! I have written several posts along this line as well.
    I will be looking around your blog, we call all learn from each other!
    Bernice
    http://bernicewood.wordpress.com/2010/09/24/10-ways-to-stop-being-so-busy/

  3. Karen (Scotland) says:

    OK, that’s me, archives read.
    I love the idea behind this blog and I can’t wait to see where you go next. I don’t have a blog myself but have so much respect for women who take the time to document and share their ideas/plans/inspirations.
    Thanks again and look forward to reading more!
    Karen

  4. Great inspiration! Enjoying the blog.

  5. “Would I rather spend my time picking up 100 Hot Wheels…?”

    I’m SO there right now. We just (okay…in July) moved into our new home and I’m in the process of unpacking/decluttering (thankful I did a bunch before we moved). As soon as I’m done with the main rooms, I plan to attack my son’s room. He has so many toys he doesn’t know what to do with all of them so it constantly looks like a bomb went off in there. Poor kiddo…so overwhelmed.

    Thank you so much for sharing your journey. It’s truly inspiring to read about. Now…I’m off to unpack a couple more boxes before the baby wakes…hopefully.

    • Faith Janes says:

      It sounds like you’re off to a good start. Working one room at a time is a good way to not get overwhelmed. I often have to remind myself, “It didn’t get this way overnight. It won’t get fixed overnight either.”

  6. Beautiful, Faith!

Trackbacks

  1. […] This post from yesterday is definitely worth reading.  Faith writes:  ”… if you don’t make a conscious choice in how you spend your time, then plenty of other things will come up to snatch it from you.”  That’s just what a lot of us need to hear. […]

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  4. […] Our to do list will never be “done” because there’s always more work to do. Weekends won’t wait. We just need to schedule the family fun now and make it top priority. […]

  5. […] we kicked ourselves as soon as we signed up for that extra “something.” We always seem to be in search of more time. Time is our most important form of currency. It’s all about how we choose to spend it. Make your […]

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