Life for corporate employees has become so hectic these days that if they blink, they may miss something potentially important. It is almost impossible to be fully present in the moment with someone constantly on the phone, the report on the desk and the unanswered email in the inbox. Today, employees’ attention is divided among so many different things that they are engaged in everything, but are never really completely focused on anything.

We zoom ahead at breakneck speeds with the help of modern gadgets, never realizing what we just skipped a traffic signal or that we would really have enjoyed that movie which waltzed out of the cinemas last week. When you max out your to-do list and you struggle to cope up with deadlines, you are forever running to catch up. Final destination – burnout.

We’re told that we need to listen to our inner voice even while we’re running around. We need to accepting the white noise of work-related pressure as a given, yet acknowledge our inner voice. Simple? Not quite. In real life, the only time we listen to that inner voice is when our bodies start screaming under extreme work-related frustration. The clinical term for this condition is stress.

Stress remains one of the biggest causes of contemporary lifestyle disorders like hypertension, diabetes and cardiac issues. In a day and age when no one wants to sit at home doing nothing, we often create work for ourselves just to keep busy. We seldom realize that this is an addiction, and that we will suffer withdrawal symptoms later in life.

The Benefits Of A Simplified Life

Creating more physical, emotional and interpersonal space in our lives allows us to view the constant hustle and bustle around and within us with increased clarity. Somewhere along the way, we see ourselves again – and suddenly, we have the space we need to reflect on what we really want to do with our lives. We catch a glimpse of the possible futures we can choose from and make quality decisions about where we want to be in the next five, ten or twenty years’ time.

Also, a simplified life allows us to look after ourselves better. Our stressed-out minds tend to turn our bodies into jails, but now they can become vehicles that take us where we want to go. Finally, we can take advantage of the recent advances in medical science and research on longevity and take some proactive steps to live a longer, more fulfilling life.

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People with an overstretched lifestyle use up all their existing resources and then go on to exhaust their reserves, as well. This is why many over-stressed executives turn to substances of abuse to manage the overload. Anything above our natural energy base cannot and will not last long enough.

Question Your Lifestyle Priorities

Answering the following questions will do a lot to kick-start a desire to simplify your life:

  • Why is my life so busy?
  • Why do I choose to do so much?
  • If I continue this way, what will be the result?
  • What is the price I am paying for this – what am I missing?
  • What will be my regrets if I die tomorrow – what should I have done rather than what I’m doing now?
  • How can I go about simplifying my life?

Some Tips

Trust that better things will come if you hold in your mind a clearer picture of what you desire. Start by creating space and time. Cut out activities and thought processes that are not required. You can begin with some of these:

  • Tasks that are no longer necessary
  • Things that other people said that you should do
  • Voluntary positions that you don’t enjoy
  • Social positions and obligations that take more time than you want to devote to them
  • Financial goals that tie you down
  • Ego-driven goals, priorities and agendas

People who devise actual systems and structures with strict discipline are the ones who make their dreams come true. They are the ones we read about in success stories. Do you want to be one of them? If yes, start shedding some of that useless load.

Jappreet Sethi

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