It’s no doubt we’re living in stressful times. Everywhere we go, we’re bogged down by notifications, text messages, emails, phone calls… Face it, it’s a lot to keep up with.
Not to mention draining. All the things mentioned above never stop coming. We try to ignore them only to wake up the next morning with double the amount we started with.
When we think of a simple life, most of us think of a humble family living on a farm that sustains their whole lifestyle. They don’t use technology nor rely on it. Instead, they use tried-and-true tactics passed down from generations before them.
A lot of us can’t even imagine living without smart devices. Our own little world can’t function without them. Living without them is a foreign concept we wish we could adopt, but struggle to do so.
You don’t have to give up everything entirely; there are small steps we can take to lessen the stress our hectic lifestyles bring. Here are three easy ways you can do just that.
We do so much without thinking anymore. Or we’re too focused on other things we can’t focus on the task(s) at hand.
Whether it’s one or the other, it hinders our ability to be present. We’re worried about what’ll happen five minutes from now if we don’t eat fast enough, meet a deadline, make a certain amount of money—the list goes on and on.
It’s time to incorporate the act of mindfulness into mundane tasks. Mindfulness is, in a nutshell, best associated with awareness. Think of when you’re out with friends. How many times do you pick up your phone to peek at your notifications?
That’s not being mindful. Being mindful would include putting your phone completely away to where it’s unreachable and to be fully engaged in the conversation at hand.
Your notifications can wait. Even when you’re doing laundry, pay attention to how you’re folding the clothes. Let your mind wander. But let it wander about non-stressful things.
Reintroduce yourself to nature
Mother Nature misses you! Being cooped up all day indoors rarely does any good for our physical and mental health. Get reacquainted to reap all of the benefits of nature, like reduced anxiety, improved mood, and as another way to heal.
It’s not about booking an expensive trip to somewhere green—a simple walk in a park will do the trick. Anywhere there are trees, shrubs, flowers, or even mountains can soothe your soul.
Next time you’re outside, take a moment to appreciate its beauty. Notice how bright the colors are or how fresh the air smells. You can’t capture that in a photo or video.
Remember to take your time. When you plan to take a relaxing stroll, bring a notebook with you. Going for a walk not only clears your mind but might even spark inspiration. Take a seat in the grass or on a bench and jot down your thoughts in a journal.
Write down how you’re feeling, what you see, what you’re imagining. It’s the perfect recipe to getting in a better mindset to make you feel refreshed and recharged. Then, when the day is over, take it a step further by nourishing your body with a good meal and a relaxing bath—you deserve it.
Noise pollution is a real thing. Constant exposure to loud, obnoxious noises takes a toll on our health.
Big cities, appliances, and music are all contributors. Elevated stress levels based on noise alone call for solitude. We all need a place we can escape to that’s quiet and allows ourselves to think clearly.
If you can’t find a place, try to find a time where your home is entirely silent. This could be in the early hours of the day or in my case, when the upstairs neighbors finally go to sleep.
During this time, make self-reflection a priority. Start by listening to your inner voice. What is your mind and body telling you? Try to control your thoughts so you don’t end up wasting the quietness thinking about stressful situations.
Slowly sip on your tea, take in your surroundings, or do nothing—this is your opportunity to take it slow and be by yourself. This shouldn’t need to be said but I’ll mention it anyway: no phones or other devices during this time.
Embrace the simple life today
This isn’t about sacrificing the necessities of the modern world. You don’t need to move to a farm in the middle of nowhere and start over with your life. Instead, incorporating these easy, basic ways to live a simple life is a good start to relying less on apps for a better lifestyle.