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Showing posts from January, 2019

The Declutter Dare

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You can declutter 100 things in one hour . Yes, you really can!  Here's how. Choose some of the following areas you'd like to focus on (or come up with your own) so you don't have to waste time deciding where to start.  List them in an order that moves smoothly through your home.  Grab bags for trash and boxes for donations, put on some great music, set your timer, and GO! 10 things from the bathroom such as old makeup, products you tried but didn't like, d├ęcor that clutters the counter. 20 things from the kitchen like chipped plates or glasses, the pressure cooker you're afraid of, unused specialty gadgets, refrigerator magnets, corporate giveaway cups. 10 things from your bureau, for example: stretched-out underwear or bras, orphan socks, that nightgown you never wear. 20 things from your closet such as clothes that are stained or faded, that don't fit, that your sister gave you when she cleaned out her own closet.  Don't forget shoes that give you

Take One Step, Because a Body In Motion Stays In Motion

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It's a law...Newton's First Law.  Maybe you learned it in high school science. A body at rest stays at rest.  A body in motion stays in motion. So decide to be the body in motion.  Don't stayed mired in situations that don't fulfill you.  Take one step , any step, to start moving in the direction you want to go.  Starting is the hard part, but once you do it, you'll have momentum to keep going. Want to get more active?    Take any tiny action and do it consistently.  A body in motion stays in motion. For every hour you sit, do two minutes of physical activity such as stretching, jogging in place, jumping jacks, sit ups, push ups, leg lifts, whatever you can think of. Always park further away. Take the stairs. Walk around the block.  Don't worry about speed (unless you feel like power walking), just take the walk. Want to get out of debt?    Try one of these.  Then try another one.  Be the body in motion. List what you owe, to whom, and the payment amou

7 Ways Minimalism Could Change Your Life for the Better

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A lot of people think of "minimalism" as a huge white room with a white couch and some modern art. That is one minimalist style or design aesthetic, and it might be appropriate in the expensive penthouse apartment of someone who has a trust fund but no family, no pets, and whose hobbies are travel and yoga.  However, most of us don't (and don't want to) live like that. So what do I mean by "minimalism"? Minimalism means living with less clutter, busyness, debt, and stress so I have room for what really matters to me. It lets me focus on the people, activities, and things that add value to my life, while reducing or removing everything else. There are many reasons to explore minimalism, and the "why" will be slightly different for everyone.  Figuring out your "why" is key to finding motivation and endurance when you encounter obstacles in your minimalist path.  So settle in with a cup of tea and a notebook and pen, and think about what

14 Ways to Cheer Up, Minimalist Style

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The holidays are over, the weather is cold and gray, and maybe you could use a bit of cheer.  Many people eat or drink or shop when they're a bit down.   But a minimalist is going to make different choices, looking for ways to enjoy everything possible about this time of year. Let's get cozy. 1.  Light a candle.    Try pure beeswax.  The wax is made by bees who feed on honey, which starts as nectar from spring and summer flowers.  The delicate honey fragrance is delicious!  But any candle will add a heartening glow to a gray afternoon or a dark night. 2.  Keep green plants.    A pothos vine, sansevieria (aka snake plant), or a succulent jade plant will thrive indoors.  So will a beautiful weeping fig (ficus benjamina) with a braided trunk, or an air-purifying peace lily. 3.  Wear cheerful clothing.    Pull out that bright silk scarf or tie and those red gloves.  If you need new snow boots or a new umbrella, pick a bright color or a sassy print.  It may be just what you need t

The Beauties of Sleep

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You know how you feel when you're short on sleep.  Awful.    Shakespeare had it right.  Sleep not only "knits up the raveled sleeve of care," it's as necessary to life as food, water, and exercise. The final ingredient for our minimalist, whole, and healthy lifestyle is one we too often overlook, especially in our modern over-busy, over-stressed lives.  Yet a deficiency in this area is linked to increased risk of heart disease, kidney disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, and stroke.  Lack of sleep makes us depressed, short-tempered, and less emotionally resilient. Sleep is not the enemy of productivity.  It's not what you do when there's nothing good on TV.  It's essential. Why "I'll sleep when I'm dead" is so destructive 1.  Without proper sleep, all your positive  food ,  drink , and  exercise  choices are useless.    Lack of sleep interferes with the production of leptin, a hormone which controls appetite.  With increased

Simply Move More

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Food and drink are absolute necessities, but our minimalist, whole, real lifestyle for health is missing a couple of important ingredients.  Diets don't work without exercise, do they? A truly healthy body is flexible, strong, and full of energy and stamina. I watch my three-year-old grandson.  He's constantly bending, squatting, getting down on the floor, then up on his toes, climbing, skipping, reaching.  He often gets sweaty, but he's never out of breath.  He has a good appetite and he sleeps like a log.  And he's cheerful, curious, inventive.  The picture of health! I'm 55 years older than Elliot.  Obviously my stamina and agility are no match for his.  I'm also unfortunately quite overweight, which means my joints are somewhat stressed and I do occasionally get out of breath. But improvement through baby steps and consistency is the name of the game. How should I exercise? 1.  Choose your time. Vigorous exercise in the morning before you eat b

A Better Approach to Drinking

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How are you doing with your minimalist (unprocessed, whole, real) food lifestyle ? In my experience, a diet means sudden, radical change.  I'll be highly motivated for a while, and then I hit a plateau and get discouraged. By using tiny habits, there are many more ways to be successful. If I think in terms of tiny habits, my focus is different.  Rather than worrying if I don't lose weight one week, I can look at my success in maintaining habits .  I can easily meet and exceed my tiny goals, which means I'm always making progress.  Continuing to make better and better food choices should be permanently sustainable, which means that over time I will see bigger changes. It also means that I'm not measuring the success of the entire lifestyle solely by whether I lose weight, but also by improved health in many different ways due to the gradual accumulation of new, better habits.  There are many more ways for me to be successful than just a number on a scale or a pie

Resolutions That Work

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Like most people, I have both good and bad habits.  On the plus side, I floss and brush, put items away when I'm done with them, turn off lights, and never leave clothes on the floor. Unfortunately, I also eat out too often, exercise too rarely, don't save enough money, and occasionally binge on carbs. Feeling stuck My good habits come easily, probably drummed in by my mother or natural to my personality (I have a need for order).  The bad habits continue to flourish because of laziness, greed, and lots of excuses: "I'm too tired to cook." "We're in a hurry; it's faster to go out than to cook." "I deserve a treat." "I got a work out when I deep-cleaned the house yesterday, so I don't need to exercise now." "It's way too hot (or cold, muggy, rainy, etc.) to take a walk today." "It's not realistic to give up sweets forever." "I'll just buy this one thing now and save more next m