3 Ways I Simplify My Life as a Minimalist

Ana Goldberg
by Ana Goldberg

Over the past year, I have moved countries three times which is why I had to figure out how to simplify life and be happy. I really just wanted to live a simple and quiet life in my home city of Siberia.

There seem to be too many complications in my life right now which is why I’m trying to make it simpler. I don’t want to live according to a schedule or spreadsheet.

The simplicity of life lies in the fact that seasons change and thunderstorms happen and we have to deal with it. I’m going to share some simple thoughts with you that aren’t very groundbreaking, but they are things I choose to do to manage my life in a simple and intentional way.

I will also share with you where simplicity doesn’t work for me and where I tend to choose complexity.

Our past choices and thoughts are not always going to be held in stone. Think about this: about 330 billion cells are replaced daily which is about 1 percent of our body’s cells.

Over a few days, you have the equivalent of a new you. Our bodies change faster than our mindsets. But here are a few ways I have changed and simplified my mindset:

Buying mass-market beauty items

1. Buying mass-market beauty items

I’ve changed my lifestyle recently just to make it simpler and more manageable in my current situation. I now go for universally available products.

I am no longer a snob about personal care products. I used to have my go-to products that were affordable, eco-friendly, and perfect for me. But now I can’t access them so I had to change my deodorant, lotions, and shampoo, for example.

Right now I can’t risk spending money on experimental items that may not work for us. I stopped overthinking my self-care routine and moving away from rigid skin-care preferences was really liberating.

Finding comfort in my roots

2. Finding comfort in my roots

I find comfort in my roots the more I’m uprooted. It’s fun to experiment and embrace a new culture. Serbian culture is very different from my culture.

But my husband and I try to find compromise for example in our meals and since I’m the cook in the family, I try to respect both of our cultures.

But when I seek the comfort of my heritage I go for simplicity and choose very simple meals such as boiled potatoes with sauerkraut and a dash of sunflower oil. It’s my culinary tradition.

Though we are so much more than our culture, race, or gender, the last year made me realize that I cannot erase my experiences and that the best I can do for my mental well-being is to accept this and search for comforts in my roots that I’m carrying inside of myself.

Preparing for predictable changes

3. Preparing for predictable changes

The core of simple living also lies in gentle acceptance of our background, capabilities, restrictions, and memories. This is how I try to prepare for predictable changes and some of the rough turns in life.

But of course, most things cannot be predicted. But let’s look at the bigger picture. We can predict certain or possible health issues when we know our family history. Like other families, my family has a long history of cancer, cardiovascular, and autoimmune issues.

That’s why I’m trying to address these weak points in my life with as much control as I can. So I’m adjusting my diet, exercise, and mindfulness practice accordingly although we don’t know if it will always work for sure. 

Let’s take jobs. I’m a professional translator and teacher but things have changed since I changed careers and started this channel. I’ve been able to pivot and develop my skills so I can grow.

Ways to simplify life

Where simplification does not work for me

While I simplify my outer life experience, I make my inner one more complex. I opted out of any short-form content, I read more now, and it was because of a very simple trick.

Two hours before bed I leave my devices in another room and I read my e-book reader. It’s an older reader so it helps me leave digital distractions in another room. It’s a simple trick that works for me and has drastically improved my quality of sleep, too.

It helps my overall intellectual well-being, a term I've recently learned, which explains the need for more complex thinking processes.

It’s the ability to challenge yourself to see all sides of an issue, become a critical thinker, and develop your own views and opinions about life issues, exposing yourself to other ideas and people who are different from you.

Ways to simplify life

Do any of these ways to simplify your life resonate with you? Do you think you may take on some of these habits to simplify your life? Let me know in the comments what you have done to simplify your life.

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