Simplify Home

A simpler life begins making your home a happy place. How would that feel?

 

A home is a kingdom of it’s own in the midst of the world,

a stronghold amid life’s storms and stresses,

a refuge, even a sanctuary.

 

 – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Get Your Simplify Home Guide

If you were standing at the front door of your home right now looking in, what would you see? What would you feel? The purpose of your home is to be a sanctuary from the rest of the world, a place you can go to relax and connect with loved ones.  Sadly, many homes today hold the clutter and stress from our overfull lives. There are now TV’s in every room which support checking out from our bodies and lives. We have lost our gathering places, like the kitchen table, where we could unload and share. A simpler life begins making your home a happy place. How would that feel? How could that support your health, your family and the giving of your gifts?

To make this transformation simpler, we want you to begin with one room and choose from the ideas below. We feel the bedroom is the most important room in the home since your body spends the most time there (even when you are sleeping the molecules of your body are needing to heal). Here are places to start:

HOUR OF POWER

Set your timer for one hour and journey through your bedroom gathering all the obvious stuff that doesn’t belong there, is no longer useful, or that you are ready to let go. Keep in mind that you are only going after the obvious and easy stuff. If you have to stop and think about it, then wait. You might be shocked what goes away.

FOCUS ON THE FLOOR

Start at the door into your bedroom and work your way around the whole area staying focused on the floor. Pick up and bag all the stuff that you know needs to leave. Don’t worry about the other stuff, it comes later. Then grab the broom or vacuum and relish in cleaning away the old dust and grime. Return to the door, look around and take in the difference.

HIDING UNDERNEATH

You can start the clutter clearing by pulling out all the stuff under the bed (or other furniture). You want to avoid using this as a storage area if at all possible. If you must store something, choose items like extra blankets or clothing. Remember, your body is feeling everything under there while you are sleeping. Once you clear the space, take a the time to clean it also. You will love how it feels.

ADD BEAUTY

Take a look at the top of your nightstand, dresser and other surfaces. Since you have cleared the clutter, can you add beauty like a candle, a plant, or a framed picture?

Enjoy this guest blog – 10 Organizing Tips to Live by for a Tidy Home

For more help on your bedroom clearsimple.com/organizebedroom

 

Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Home, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr
Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Home, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr

Your Guides to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to transform your life.

Simplify Office

What if you could walk into your office tomorrow, look around, get excited and energized?

Regardless of the size of your business, it is essential to have a personalized and organized workspace.

It helps refresh your mind, improves your productivity and deepens the joy in your work.

 – Marla Dee

Get Your Simplify Office Guide

If you were standing at the doorway of your office with the person you admire most, would you be excited or ashamed? We certainly understand if your work space has become cluttered, disorganized and draining. This is what happens when your work expects more than you can give. You might be spending more time in your work space than at relaxing home. You might even be working from home! We wish more companies would give their employees, and more entrepreneurs would give themselves, at least one day each year just for clutter clearing and organizing.

If you are ready for an office that supports you rather than stressing you, we are here to help. You can start with just your desktop, your supply area, your technology, your paper or your productivity. Here are some great ideas to get you going. Give yourself permission and remember it can be powerful to pick just one!

What every office needs and wants:

  • A really nice, big enough desk that you love working at
  • An uncluttered desktop area for work and creativity
  • A very comfortable, supportive chair and a carpet protector to go underneath
  • Two desk drawers for daily supplies, along with an area for other supplies
  • Two drawer file cabinet within arm’s reach of your chair to hold active projects
  • Window and/or dimmer lighting for your preference and needs
  • Computer equipment that is fast, accessible and ergonomically correct
  • A shredder and recycle container close by so you can clear the junk quickly
  • Inspirational object, plant or framed picture of someone you love
  • Bulletin board or other area for visual reminders
  • Incoming container for the paper and information coming at you.
  • A vertical and visual action container for the papers that need your attention
  • A project action center or location such as a different file drawer
  • To read container and location to keep your reading papers separated
  • Music you love or quiet depending on personality
  • An office with a door so you can have privacy when you need it.
  • A great chair to welcome collaborators or visitors (like your spouse) 
  • The entire iRAFT System to handle all your papers. Get details at clearsimple.com/iRAFT
  • Checkout the Ultimate Filing System for homes or small businesses – FreedomFiler

What if you could walk into your office tomorrow, look around and feel yourself get excited and energized?

 Get your Simplify Office guide here

Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Your Office, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr
Clear & Simple, Simplify Your Life, Simplify Your Office, Marla Dee, Kate Fehr

Your Guides to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to transform your life.

Simplify Yourself…

Get realistic and honest about how you wholeheartedly desire to live your life.


How we spend our days is, of course,

how we spend our lives.

Anne Dillard

Get your Simplify Yourself guide here

Despite our modern world belief systems, we simply do not have enough time and energy to do all the things. Simplifying yourself and your life opens up space so you can a deep look at yourself and what you most want to do with your precious life. A great place to start is looking at your fantasy selves. A popular phrase coined by minimalist, author, and blogger Francine Jay, fantasy selves represent all the versions of ourselves that we think we want to to be. For most of my life and into my mid-thirties I thought I wanted to do it all, and I kept convincing myself I could do it all. I could work full time; be a mama, partner, friend, sister, daughter, student of life; organize myself, my son, my life, and my home; travel; spend time with loved ones; practice self-care; practice yoga; camp; hike; bike; read; take workshops; learn to cook; do laundry and clean my home, just to name a few.

Sometime in 2017-ish, while reading Francine’s post, Declutter Your Fantasy Self, I felt immediate resonance and relief. Oh, hell’s bells… I thought. Of course! How incredible would it feel to let go of all those fantasy versions of myself? {deep breath} As I wrote a list of my unrealized selves, and all the clutter in tow, I was able to feel how much of my life force had been blocked by things that did not provide value or joy in my life. I became willing to release them and make room for what was really true for me. As I said goodbye to these fantasy selves and the clutter connected to them, I opened up to a new way of living and being.

All too often, we hold on to stuff because it represents who we think we should be, rather than who we are. Sometimes our fantasy selves are meant to impress others; sometimes they’re relics of our past; sometimes they’re fantasies about our future. Whatever the case, it’s important to remember: acquiring stuff for your fantasy self doesn’t make it a reality. Most of the time, it only leads to a lot of nice clutter you never actually use. – Francine Jay

What fantasy selves are you holding onto that don’t match your current life? What material stuff is crowding your space, external and internal? I invite you to write a list of your own fantasy selves and all of the stuff connected to them.

Examples of fantasy selves and their potential clutter…

  • Outdoors fanatic – bicycling, hiking, camping, and ski gear; beach gear and toys, yard toys, and hammocks.
  • Crafty Betty – sewing machine, notions, lots of material; paper, paints, scissors; knitting needles and yarn.
  • Book Worm – a library full of books you have read, books you hope to read, and books from schooling.
  • Music Lover – shelves of CD’s or records, technology old and new, and instruments you might play someday.
  • Photographer – cameras, tripods, cords of every shape and size, boxes of photos, and digital photos galore.
  • World Traveler – Suitcases and travel accessories in all different types and sizes, maps, and books on travel.
  • Chef extraordinaire – pots, pans, mixing bowls, cooking utensils, and ingredients a plenty.

Wouldn’t it feel great to get clarity about how you most desire to live your life, to make conscious choices about how you spend your days, and cultivate a life that brings you joy and deep satisfaction? – Kate Fehr

 Get your Simplify Yourself guide here

Your Guides to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee & Kate Fehr

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to transform your life.

Simply Sit…

A simple practice for anyone, anytime, is to sit. Just sit. Just breathe. Just be.

In an age of constant movement,

nothing is more important than sitting still

Pico Iyer

Get Your Simply Sit Guide here

A simple practice for anyone, anytime, is to sit. Just sit. Just breathe. Just  be. How long has it been since you did this? I’m not talking about meditating or any activity that requires focus. I am asking you to sit still and simply be with yourself and the world around you. There are times all throughout your day to do this. It only requires giving yourself permission.

I keep noticing my resistance to sitting still. My comfort zone is being busy. When I think about just sitting my brain goes to what can I do, crazy right? I recently read a wonderful book, The Sacred Enneagram, by Christopher L. Heuertz. Christopher shares a practice called engaging solitude, where he suggests taking 20 minutes a day to sit quietly with myself. I have been doing this for months now and it is blissful. I hadn’t realized how pressured I always felt to be doing something. I now give myself permission to do nothing.

It can fun to discover your favorite place or time for sitting still. Personally, I love my morning sit with my cup of strong, black coffee. The world is quiet, my body barely awake, and I get to sit. There is no doing involved, simply breathing and being in my body in the moment. I am always delighted, and often surprised, at what pops up to be noticed. I also love to end my day with sitting outside staring at the night sky.

Sweet ideas for sitting still.

  • Begin or end the day with sitting on your porch. Hang out with yourelf.
  • Take five minutes to sit at your desk at the beginning or end of the work day. 
  • Take five minutes to sit in your car after the work day before you head home.
  • Go sit in the grass or lean on a tree.  Let your body touch the earth.
  • Sit at the edge of a river, a stream or the ocean. Feel the water.
  • Sit in the sun or the rain or the moonlight.
  • Sit in your favorite bookstore or coffee shop.
  • Plop in your  comfiest chair, without the TV on or a book in your hand. 
  • Sit in front of a fire, either in your home or in the forest.  Let yourself get lost.
  • Sit next to your child or loved one and simply breathe each other in.

Let yourself simply sit right now, wherever you are. Give yourself 5 minutes. You might be surprised. You might feel something new or let go of something old. Try this simple practice.  I hope you will get hooked and make it part of your everyday life.

 Get Your Simply Sit Guide here

Your Guide to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to live free of clutter and get organized at last.

Simply Play…

I learned how to play from my daughter…

Play is the spark that keeps our fire burning!

Marla Dee

Get your Simply Play guide here

My daughter Jessica is now 24 years old. All her life, she has taught me how to play. I tend to forget that play is a part of life. I forget that play happens every day. I forget that play nurtures me. I forget how to just have fun. I was taught when you get all the work done, then you can play. The dilemma here is that the work is never done. So, I’ve adopted my daughter’s approach of bringing in play at every opportunity.  At this moment, I am in my comfy clothes, curled up on the couch, surrounded by pillows, coffee cup beside me, laptop in my lap, writing. Life does not get sweeter than this. I am having fun. I have come a long way. I have learned from a master.

Simple play ideas that my daughter has taught me:

  • Play with a kitten or puppy. If you are really brave, bring one home with you.
  • Go to the park and let loose in the playground. Get on a swing.
  • Color or draw. Why not splurge on a new pack of crayons or colored pencils.
  • Climb a tree. Collect rocks. Dig in the dirt.
  • Pack a yummy picnic and eat in your yard or on your porch.
  • Put on music and dance in your living room. Really let loose.
  • Have a slumber party followed by breakfast in bed.
  • Read a story then let yourself get lost in it. Isn’t it amazing how hours go by?
  • Play hooky for one hour during your work week. Be daring.
  • Cook with your fingers. Eat with your fingers. Yep, get messy.
  • Let a song or a story come out of you. Go ahead, do it right now.
  • Watch a movie you’ve seen before and act it out.
  • Or you can play at being different animals or characters.
  • Wrestle around on your living room floor – hug, tickle, laugh, let go and just love.

Lastly, invite a playmate into your life. I did, unexpectedly. Back in the fall of 1994, I was meditating outside on a beautiful, warm day. All of a sudden, I heard a little voice inside me say Hi, Mom! I looked down at my still flat stomach and asked, am I pregnant? Yes, she replied, so simply & sweetly. Why now, I asked, for I had been waiting for her to come for years and had given up. I will never forget her response, because you are ready for joy in your life. To this day, the memory of that moment grabs me in the gut. She came to remind that life is about joy, about play, about creating. She awakened my long lost child. She brought me back to life.

So, I insist that you play today! Be spontaneous. Start simple, start small or go for it and take a whole day. Just do it. This is not about planning, it’s about being. Play is the spark that keeps our fire burning.

Get Your Simply Play Guide

Your Guide to a Simpler Life, Marla Dee

We love teaching the Clear & Simple Way© to live free of clutter and get organized at last.