Happy New Year to all! We hope your holidays have been filled with love, joy family and friends. There’s a few more days to go before “real life” begins again (after all Christmas is 12 days), but the return to work + the next few months of winter-without-Christmas is on the horizon.
For Brandon and I January means a fresh start, new creative ways of thinking, new clients with radiant smiles + amazing stories to capture, new challenges and bumps/curves in the road. Each year we pick a word to theme our new year, this year’s word is Simplicity. Our goal is to simplify our lives in 2015.
To start our journey to Live Simple we took a look at things we really don’t need. One of those things being two cars. I know, your probably thinking we are crazy (especially since both cars have been paid off for quite some time), but honestly we do most everything together; therefore, one car usually just sits in the driveway at all times. We just don’t need both. Plus this gives us a good reason to get on our bikes more often. As fait would have it on December 30th we sold our second car and we are officially starting the new year as a single car family. This was a great start to our New Years Resolution, but we have a plan for even more simplifying.
Our Live Simple Plan:
• January: Minimalist Wardrobe – We currently have two full closets, two full dressers + an armoire of clothes. Our goal is to get down to just the armoire, one dresser and one closet full of clothes. Please wish us luck on this one, we will need it!
• February: Learn to Evaluate Our Time – How do we spend our day? What things do we do, from the time we wake up to the time we go to sleep? Make a list, and evaluate whats in line with our priorities. Eliminate the things that aren’t, and focus on what’s important. Redesign our day.
• March: Declutter the Kitchen – Over the years we have acquired an abundance of kitchen supplies. Just this afternoon I realized we own like 6 spatchulas, 3 sets of measuring cups, a million coffee cups and not to mention the “kitchen junk drawer“.
• April: Limit Our Social Media – Our lives these days are filled with a vast flow of communications: email, IM, cell phones, paper mail, Skype, Twitter, forums, and more. It can take up our whole day if we let it. Our goal is to limit the social media and focus on real face to face time. We hope to only do email at certain times of the day, for an allotted time frame. Limit phone calls to certain times along with twitter, forums and FB too. Same with any other communications. We will set a schedule and stick to it.
• May: Redesign The Spare Bedroom – We have a huge guest room and we are hoping to split the space into two smaller usable spaces. Half the room will still be the guest room and the other half will be a second living room space. We entertain quite often and having additional open space to use will be amazing!
• June: Find Inner Simplicity. Brandon and I are spiritual people and we have found that spending a little time in the classroom of silence and prayer brings peaceful simplicity rather than a chaotic confusion. During the month of June we both hope to develop a lifelong habit of meditating or journaling, or time spent in nature. We have both come to know that working on our inner self is worth the time. And it only takes 30 days to form a good habit.
• July: Office Summer Cleaning – To be honest the office stays pretty neat and organized but we always take some time to clear out any extras we may not need, for example any unused or outdated props. This year we are also looking forward to tweaking the meeting space just a bit.
• August: Learn to Decompress From Stress – We all have stress no matter how much we simplify our lives. Our focus this month will be leaning how to decompress, for example: deep breathing, taking a walk, getting outside, yoga or stretching.
• September: Garage Clean Up – This one will be huge, the main goal here is to get it organized. We utilize almost everything in the garage, but when we start a project things quickly become scattered everywhere. The goal is to organize every little item so it has its own spot any give it a nice clean fresh look.
• October: Beauty Supply Graveyard – This one is pretty much all on me, I have a mini graveyard of beauty supplies that just did not quite hold up to their promises and its time to stop thinking that one day I may use them. Its time to purge. Ladies, I know you can feel my pain here;)
• November: Single-task – We have all heard that multi-tasking is more complicated, more stressful, and generally less productive. Time to break the habit. We will learn to focus our time, set time blocks, fight the urge to multi-task and turn off distractions.
• December: Minimalize our Living Space: By December our house should be well organized and most excess stuff given to charity. However, we want to go a bit further. We will go room by room and ask ourselves if this item is truly essential. If we can live without it, it’s out. We both love the look and feel of minimal interior design. The rooms with almost nothing in them except beautiful furniture, creative artwork, and a very few pretty decorations… down to its essentials. Of course we will have a few choice items beyond the essentials but nothing overbearing.