Life and Spiritual Coaching

September 17, 2008

SimplifyYour Life

Filed under: Life Coaching — by Donna Ritter @ 12:48 pm
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As I said in an earlier post, we all have too many things to do each day and we need ways to focus our energy on the most important things in our lives. Here is a list of things to think about when you find yourself in a state of panic from all of the things people are asking you to do:

  • Do nothing. See you’re so task oriented that you automatically wanted a list of things to add to your to-do list. Take some time to do nothing, just sit there and be with yourself. It’s so hard for most people that being left to do nothing is a severe form of torture.
  • Throw something out. Look into a drawer that you haven’t opened in awhile and pick an item to throw out based on the fact that you know you won’t use it again. We are natural hoarders, but this just adds unnecessary complexity to our lives.
  • Clean your desktop. Sitting at a desk with no clutter will keep our minds clear and thinking about the task at hand. Start becoming distraction free in the seat you spend most of your day in.
  • Clean your desktop, again. This time I’m talking about the one on your computer. Get rid of all those icons and organize the folders in which you keep all your programs. Give yourself something visually simple to look at in order to keep a clear and focused mind.
  • Make your bed. Many of us don’t make our bed the first thing after we get up. Sometimes this gets neglected completely, unless we’re expecting company. Make it first thing and look forward to climbing into something neat and comfy at the end of the day.
  • Clear your inbox. I love e-mail’s archive feature, it allows you put things away, and keep your inbox clean. Reply to everything you need to, delete everything else, and keep your e-mail as a focus point, not a clutter point.
  • Eat slowly. Do not treat eating as one of life’s little inconveniences. Instead, eat slowly and enjoy each bite as if it were your last, and if it were, know that you got the most out of it.
  • Drive slower. There’s no need to speed race, talk on your cell phone, eat, and take notes all at the same time. Treat driving time as a time for decompression, meditation, and de-cluttering of your mind. Turn off the cell and enjoy these quiet moments of solitude.
  • Laugh out loud. You really can trick your body into being happy by laughing out loud. If you don’t believe me, I’ll make a believer out of you. Spend the next 3 minutes laughing out loud, as hard as you can, making the sounds and body motions. You will be happier.
  • Talk to people. Instead of being absorbed in newspapers and television shows find a person to talk to. Discuss goals, dreams, aspirations and none of that self-pitying or past tense thinking.
  • Pick most important things. Sit down with pen and paper and decide on the 3 things that are most important in your life, and how you can drop everything else to achieve them.
  • Drink water. Forget the sophisticated and often complicated drinks and stick to the most essential of all — water. At least 8 cups of this stuff a day — a bit less if you eat a lot of fruit — and a bit more if you exercise or sweat heavily.
  • Go for a walk. You don’t even have to put on your fancy bubble sneakers and hit the treadmill. It’s enough to go for a nice walk — at least 30 minutes (yes, that’s 2x 15, you’ll thank me for it one day) — and let some blood pump through your body. It’s recommend to do this 3 times a week to stay healthy, but my personal recommendation would be to make this into your daily routine.
  • Clean your closet. Do your laundry, put away all your clothes, and then take a good look at your closet. What do you not wear? What is not essential? Put the answers to these questions in a box and donate them.
  • Plan your meals. Eliminate the guess work of where will you eat next by planning, if not the whole week, than at least this entire day, as far as what and where you will eat. I guarantee that planning will allow you to make healthier choices while going easier on your wallet at the same time.

o   “Nature is what we know – Yet have not art to say – So impotent our wisdom is To her simplicity”
~Emily Dickinson

  • Visit nature. Bask in the beauty and serenity that nature has selflessly provided us with. Go to a forest, park, or simply sit under a tree, and do nothing, read a book, or chat with a friend. While out walking I saw a kid sitting under a tree with his laptop; while not the most effective use of nature, it still beats doing the required homework inside the house on a beautiful day.
  • Play catch. You won’t find too many activities easier than tossing the ball around between two people. It’s great exercise, it’s relaxing yet invigorating, and a great opportunity to talk and bond.
  • Eliminate distractions. Whether you’re working, reading, doing homework, or spending time with someone it’s important to give it your full attention. Turn off the phone, television, and any other distractions that can pop up unannounced. Be present.
  • Say ‘No’. In an effort to simplify, do not accept new commitments that you don’t want to accept. Say no to your boss, spouse, kids, and friends. Explain to them that you need some time to concentrate on the tasks at hand in order to simplify your life and increase your happiness, productivity, and vitality.
  • Read daily. If you were to take out 30 minutes a day to read (another 2×15), you will have spent 4.5 full work weeks reading by the end of the year. You would be very smart.


July 5, 2008

Simplify Your Life to Find Your Authentic Self

Filed under: Life Balance,Life Coaching — by Donna Ritter @ 1:56 pm
Tags: , ,


In this world of tons of data, we have over complicated our lives to the max. Sometimes it takes just a little attention to simplify your life and therefore be much more at peace. I know in my house we have 6 computers, 2 printers, a scanner and storage on a wireless network. The amount of data I can get bogged down in daily is huge. I have one child in college and one that will be a senior in college. Just keeping the paper work for his test scores, college applications and checklists take a huge hunk of my time. Granted, I am an overachiever, but that’s my problem. Smile

So what can we do to simplify our lives? Here are some ideas I have and have borrowed from others.

·       De-clutter your work area. I listen to the Oprah XM channel and there is a guy on the show that specializes in de-cluttering. He has some great recommendations that I have started implementing. Take 2 bags with you to your room. One bag is for garbage and one bag is for the Goodwill. It is amazing how my things have multiplied over the years! I have also promised not to keep another magazine without throwing one out first. Some things I have kept as mementoes, but it is amazing what I was able to get rid of.

·       Clean your desktop. Every evening, I clean my desktop off and write in my planner what I need to do the next day. That way, when I start work, I feel clean. Only problem, is I am a workaholic and sometimes the work hours are sporadic!

Sitting at a desk with no clutter will keep our minds clear and thinking about the task at hand. Also, keeping your planner up to date will make you feel on top of things.

·       Make your bed. Many of us don’t make our bed the first thing after we get up. I always do. I feel so much more comfortable with it made. Mostly since I work at home, it makes a clear start to the work day.

·       Clear your inbox. This is one of my harder tasks. I get so much email; I have to force myself to have set times when I read email. I have lots of folders, but I still end up with a mess of email to deal with. This is one of my goals for improvement.

·       Eat slowly. Sit down at the table and have a proper meal. This is hard for me. Sometimes I forget to eat lunch at all! With phone calls, webinars, writing, coaching, meetings…wait. I am doing exactly what I am preaching not to do. It is better for your digestive system to eat slowly and also to take a nice walk after lunch before getting back to the races.

·       Drive slower. I am very bad with this item. Luckily, working at home helps. But I live in the Houston area and people drive crazy here. One thing I have to make a habit of doing is turning my cell phone off while I’m in car. More than once, an angle has saved me from an accident while I was turning my purse inside out looking for my cell phone! Better yet, take a walk and enjoy the beautiful nature God has given us.

·       Laugh out loud or Smile. That’s one reason I listen to the XM radio channels to get in a few giggles. It does wonders for my spirit.

·       Talk to people. This is easy for me since I am such a people person. The only problem is I can get caught up in talking too long! It does help break the day up. Make sure to mix business discussions with pleasurable discussions to help even out your conversations.

·       Work on what is most important to you. If you have read my blog before, you know how much I believe in having a mission statement. If what you are doing does not fit in with your goals, drop it. We only have so much time and once it’s gone we can’t get it back. It is vital that you work on what is important to your goals, roles and mission.  If you have a job that doesn’t allow that – find a new one. Time is too short to waste. We never know when it is our time to go so let’s enjoy life as much as we can while we are here!


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