Thanks for stopping by on this snowy, Kentucky Sunday! I hope your weekend is leaving you well-rested and prepared to take on Monday like you were born for it.
Waking up this morning to a quiet, white landscape reminded me of just how much I love the simple things in life but also how good I am at overcomplicating them. Go figure. I’m working on it, ok?
From me to you, here are six ways I’m becoming dedicated to simplifying:
- The Skimm
- The problem: I love knowing what’s going on in the world but don’t always have the time or energy to invest in reading countless articles or watching hours of news. Let’s get real, after work you’re much more likely to find me watching Californication (throwback!) with a college-pour of Malbec. Beyond that, the news can be bleak, bland and sometimes downright hard to grasp. For someone like me with the attention span of a gnat, this means more often than not I stare at ceiling while my astute peers discuss world events with grace and ease. The simple solution: The Skimm, which is exactly what it sounds like, a SKIMming of news. From serious issues like Benghazi and Bergdahl to pop culture like Bieber (YES!) and box office numbers, the Skimm covers it all quickly and cleverly. It’s an emailed overview of relevant stories complete with links to more detailed articles and videos, that arrives in your inbox before 7 a.m. so if you’re an early bird like me, you know whats going on well before the figurative ‘water cooler’ gets surrounded. You’ll wind up sounding like a like a New York Times junkie in minutes without cracking a page.
- Moisturizer: A Balancing Act, Part 1
- The problem: My high school senior superlative may as well have been Most Sensitive Skin or Most Likely to Never Use Scented Lotion, Ever. Sensitive skin has been part of my life since I can remember and in hindsight, the lengths I took to avoid using new products were extensive. Liquid foundation? Uhhh, yeah right. Oil? NEVER. Moisturizer? Get real. My skin was like Pandora’s Box and I was not trying to open it and unleash hell on my poor face. Except as I’ve gotten older, my skin needs more love, love that it was not getting from my militant routine. So, what’s a girl to do? The simple solution: Beautycounter. Think: what Whole Foods is to organics, Beautycounter is to makeup. It’s a safer, cleaner alternative to what we’ve been slathering on our largest organ for years. The company’s roots stemmed from concern over the thousands of chemicals we put on our bodies and faces everyday and the lack of legislation in their regulation. You can read their story here. The skin skeptic in me was hesitant but as it turns out, my sensitivities seemed to be directly linked to the very chemicals Beautycounter has sought to weed out. Now, my skincare is not only simple, but safe. My moisture must-haves? In the morning it’s all about this Every Day Hydrating Cream paired with two drops of this amazing oil that works wonders on my temperamental skin. After the makeup’s removed and sleep is in sight, I love the Every Night Hydrating Cream (think the AM routine on crack). Beautycounter, you had me at simple and safe!
- ‘Dude, where’s that shirt?!’
- The problem: ‘Ain’t no mountain high’ should never apply to your laundry pile, unless you want to weep openly every time you need to find a specific garment and literally cannot. As I recently got ready for work one morning and I stared into my closet which felt more like an infinite abyss, I thought to myself, ‘where in the world is that shirt?!’ A quick survey of the figurative minefield and I was paralyzed, how many clothes are too many? I had my answer, I was looking at it. The simple solution: If it hasn’t been worn in the last six months, it’s likely not going to be worn in the next six. Cue my incessant rationalizations for keeping t-shirts that haven’t seen the light of day in 3 years. But for simplicity sake- it’s time, even if breaking up is hard to do. With that being said, just because it’s not floating my boat doesn’t mean it won’t for someone else and I’m a firm believer in this case that donation is the name of the game. If you’re considering an overhaul, here is a link to some super-duper awesome causes that take donations and put them to good use! By the way, do they make 100- gallon garbage bags? Asking for a friend.
- Life lesson: Don’t run with scissors… or your cell phone.
- The problem: My phone is a tiny computer that connects me to the world. I get the news, messages, updates, scores, the weather.. hell, it even tells me how many calories I’ve eaten. However, this seriously connected device also has a flip side: it never lets me disconnect. Even on a run which is supposed to be my ‘me-time’. As I put in my headphones and crank up my Spotify, I can’t escape the pings and lights from what feels like a million different things, pulling me a million different directions. Does this thing have an off button? The simple solution: I’m bringing sexy back and by sexy I mean my old school iPod. Yup, this monster. It holds more music than some computers and gets ZERO notifications. It doesn’t care about ScoreCenter, CNN, Gmail or how many calories I went over today, it just cares about providing me with good music for as long as my legs will carry me. Now my ‘me-time’ can be just that. And my phone isn’t at the bottom of the Ohio River, don’t you love silver linings?
- 11th Commandment: Thou Shalt Not Go To The Grocery Hungry
- The problem: It’s the end of the day, I’m still in work clothes and look like a zombie. My stomach is starting to grumble as I swing in to a spot and I already know what is about to happen, I am about to buy all the food in Kroger. Forget Snowpocalyses or prepping for a Zombie takeover, I am about to shame everyone with this haul, leaving only empty shelves and terrified employees in my wake. When I get home there will be no chance at filling my arms to the brim with bags, borderline cutting off all circulation to make the one trip, no, this will require multiple runs. These are the damages of my hungry grocery haul. The simple solution: Oh, I don’t know… STOP GOING TO THE GROCERY HUNGRY. Go home, eat a snack, change clothes, throw a baseball hat on and do the grocery like a normal human. Go with your list, stick to it. Very simple. You don’t need Teddy Grahams, popsicles and 3 bags of pizza rolls. Chill.
- ‘Not tonight, I’m sick with a serious case of Busy’
- The problem: “Yes, I’d love to!” “Oh, really? Where? What time?” “Absolutely!” These are commonly used phrases in my vocabulary, I’d even venture to say they are some of the MOST commonly used. These phrases themselves aren’t the problem, they are merely symptoms of the unmistakeable sickness I have, Busy *gasps*. Diagnosis: It is the body’s inability to say ‘no’ or slow down resulting in little to no time for the person to decompress often leading to fatigue. Before I continue, let me be clear- I know, everyone is busy! This is not a Pity Party: Table for One, this is me acknowledging I struggle with exercising the word ‘no’. PSA over. The simple solution: Get more comfortable saying ‘no’. Pretty simple. You want to go home and run? You need to go home and go to bed at 7? You just need some quality time to decompress and read your book? Make time, use your words. One in particular.
Let’s get simple.