Simplify By Getting Rid of Variables

Boost Your Productivity: Kill Some Variables In Your Life

In our never-ending quest to reduce stress by simplifying, we often don’t consider all of the tiny decisions we have to make every day.  While I may not be a proponent of owning one pair of jeans and a handful of t-shirts, I can see the logic in trying to eliminate some of the repetitive decision-making options from your day.

Some people lay out their clothes the night before, and I do this if I have something going on the next day.  However, if I’m just hanging around the house, baby-sitting and granny-sitting, I tend to grab whatever knit pants and t-shirt happens to be on the top of the drawer.  I’m sure that doesn’t follow any “what not to wear” rules, but I don’t see any point in agonizing over what to wear if I’m not going anywhere.

I have tried to cull my clothes to the point that the things that I didn’t really wear often were given to someone who will wear them.  I found that even when we started keeping the laundry caught up all the time, I was still wearing the same several shirts.  I decided those other items didn’t need to be taking up valuable closet space, and complicating the selection process.

As for grocery shopping, I can certainly see the appeal of having commonly purchased items delivered.  If you’re getting a lot of the same things repeatedly, and they’re non-perishable, it makes sense to get them delivered, perhaps for less than you would pay at the local grocery chain.  But I would still have to make a couple of trips a week just to keep us up in fresh fruits and veggies, something I’m not willing to cut back on.

I was surprised that this article was so short, although it did get me thinking about other ways to eliminate decisions.  I expected to see something about menu planning (we’ve not really mastered this, but we find that we have several fall-back meals that we like to have on hand, and we do like to use freezer recipes), putting items in the same place every time (how much time do you waste searching for your car keys, purse, or fave shoes?), or even “multi-tasking” by using time otherwise spent waiting and twiddling your thumbs (read, knit, or whatever while you’re waiting at the doctor’s office, getting your car worked on, etc.)

And let’s not forget that having clear goals can save us a lot of time in the decision making process.  I’m a big fan of to-do lists (perhaps just a tiny bit obsessive).  If I have several things that I want to accomplish, it helps to try to prioritize them, so that I make sure I get the most important ones done, even if I don’t complete my list.  Then I don’t have to spend time repeatedly reading through the list and thinking, “Ok, what should I do next?”

Have any of you had success with having some of your groceries delivered?  Can you think of other strategies to eliminate some of the variables in your life, and make better use of time that may otherwise be wasted?

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7 thoughts on “Simplify By Getting Rid of Variables

  1. We do get some things delivered. A few I can think of are vitamins, diapers, wipes, coconut oil,… Anything else I haven’t really found it any cheaper online yet.

    I would be lost without menu planning. In fact, I have it planned through the month. It really helps to take advantage of sales and stick within a budget. Oh, and no trips out to et because I didn’t know what to make. 🙂

    • Yes, we have really kicked the habit of going out or ordering delivery because we couldn’t think of what to make. Of course, it’s pretty hard to get fast food or delivery that is gluten free, so I guess that helped us finally kick it. 😉

  2. kthorpe says:

    To-do lists are key. Without one, I find myself so distracted!

    • I know! I have had so many people tell me that I’m soooo organized, but the truth is, I’m hard-core ADHD, and my coping mechanism is to WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN! Otherwise, I end up mentally wandering and accomplishing nothing!

  3. VivBlogs says:

    I’d love to have all my groceries delivered. I would be happy if I never had to set foot in a grocery store ever again. I’m pretty frugal when it comes to what I wear (i.e. I wear the same thing most of the time), I think the key to cutting back on laundry is teaching the boys to do their own washing. I always set their clothes aside for the next morning, though. It makes the day go so much more smoothly.

    • My daughter used to have a habit of trying on many outfits before deciding what she wanted to wear, and throw the remainder into the dirty laundry basket, or leave them on the floor until I told her to clean her room and THEN throw everything in the laundry. It drove me crazy! We decreased the amount of things she had available to her, and made her responsible for helping out with the laundry, and it decreased dramatically. It still took a while before that stopped being her fallback for a “quick” room clean, though, LOL!

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