Alright, alright, we get it: it’s a new year. We’ve been here many (and we mean many) times before. We’re all for setting goals but unfortunately, the pressure associated with it year-after-year tends to be downright stressful. After all, a new resolution can be set at any time. And sometimes when our girlfriend asks what goals we’ve set, we’re tempted to just say “make it through the year without completely losing our sanity”.
To boot, modern life is ruthlessly demanding and distracting. It seems almost futile to set any intentions because… well you know: Life happens.
But one way we’re looking at this new year is as an opportunity to simplify. Here are some ways to declutter your life that you might not have thought of.
1. Less meetings.
How much do you really accomplish during team work meetings? Sure, a chitchat here and there can be good for the soul, but Zoom calls have a tendency to run late, bleeding into the rest of an otherwise productive work day. Consider paring down the frequency of your meetings to a minimum. You won’t believe how much time you’ll save. See how for its employees.
2. 'Do Not Disturb' can be your best friend.
If putting your phone out of sight isn’t an option, try the ‘Do Not Disturb’ or ‘Focus’ function on your device. You can set its parameters on how long you want it to silence notifications, who can contact you during this time and which apps you can access. Fewer distractions eliminates task-switching and improves your focus.
3. Delegate tasks.
This one can be a hard pill to swallow but the truth is you can’t do it all. If there’s a to-do that can just as easily be done by someone else, assign it to them.
4. Go for a walk.
Stressed out with your schedule and realizing you didn’t get your workout in? Walking is a great way to bookend your day and let your worries melt away. Not only is it good for your mental health and productivity, it’s also an easy (not to mention effective!) way to get some movement in without too much thought.
5. Simplify your space with a physical inbox.
We love David Allen’s — more specifically, the idea that you should have only one gathering point for stray papers and to-dos that need organizing at a later time. Get a paper tray and use this as a storage place for incoming loose papers, sticky notes, you name it. Then once a week, review what you’ve collected and either 1) file away, 2) discard, or 3) add to your to-do list.