Living Simply In the New Year

Simple Living Mantel

How to begin living simply in the new year

Simple Living Mantel
Sleigh bells on the mantel

Are you ready to find peace after the year that we have been through? Who would have thought that the start of a new decade would bring with it such catastrophic change to our way of living all over the world? Maybe this is your time to slow down and find peace to start living simply in the new year!

Living Simply although our way of life has changed

Our manner of livelihood has changed in many ways that we don’t like. No one is exempt from the wearing of masks, or the constant washing and sanitizing of hands. Closed businesses, limited entry and social distancing have prohibited gatherings. Mandated quarantines and the inability to give or receive a hug from a loved one have made it difficult to remain emotionally connected. But, worst of all, being forbidden to visit with a sick family member in the hospital, or one who has been living in a senior care facility, has kept us from being there in their most crucial moments.

It’s not impossible to lead a simple lifestyle

Living Simply Sheep
Sheep on an easy, rainy day

With these “new normals” in mind, I want to share with you everything I have learned about leading a simpler life. You too can feel the peace that I have come to know through simple living. So, let’s slow down and establish the right frame of mind. Create flat surfaces in our homes. And start Letting go of the things we don’t need. We need to forgive, move forward, and allow ourselves to rest. These are just a few of the concepts we will unpack in finding our happy place in 2021. Let’s take hold of our lives and find a happiness that many feel is impossible. We can aspire to living simply in the new year!

Changing our focus

If you are not new to this blog then you already know that I am an open book. I don’t hide behind a perfect exterior (or interior as far as homes go!) You know me as transparent. A friend that will come alongside you as we face life’s challenges. Let’s live a less complicated, more meaningful, life together. I’m not afraid to expose my own struggles, along with the knowledge I have attained, to help make our family’s lives simpler. Less stuff, both material and emotional, opens up a whole new space to focus on things that mean the most to us.

We can manage our lives differently to live more simply

So, which areas should we begin to manage better in our lives so that we can begin living simply in the new year? By reviewing the past year, including both our successes and failures, we can better determine our individual priorities. For the past 20 years or so I have done a personal inventory at the end of each year. It may have been 10 questions, 20 questions, or somewhere in between. But it was always a jumping off point for assessing my goals and determining where I wanted to be – personally, professionally, and spiritually – in the year ahead.

You’ll want to snap-up this FREE printable

Because I want to share this simple tool with you, I have developed a FREE three-page printable that will guide you through the big stuff of this past year. It will start you thinking about the next 365 days. Where would you like to be at this time in 2021? This document (which sports a cute wintery theme! ๐Ÿ™‚ poses 10 easy questions. These will turn your attention to areas you may choose as your focus. Plus, a bonus question and a lined page for additional notes or thoughts.

This will give you a fresh perspective on entering a new year, without setting the usual, unattainable resolutions. You can receive and download your copy of the Year-end Review by subscribing to Of A Simple Nature. That way you can continue to receive all of the other goodies that get added to the blog. And you won’t miss a single post to help you begin the journey to simple living !

It doesn’t have to be hard to prioritize

Simple, attractive pages will allow you to reflect on the highs and lows of the previous year. Like, what you want to repeat and where you need to enact change. They’ll help you to easily connect both your successes and frustrations, on paper, to see what is most important to you in the coming year. In addition, consistent reflection will ensure that you remain on the right path to reach your goals in 2021. Answer each question prayerfully and thoughtfully. Then, tuck them away to review in about 6 months. This will make it easy to see how close you are to reaching those goals. (Add this to your calendar for sometime in June so you don’t forget!)

Living simply dalas
Embracing my Scandinavian roots with some cute Dala Horses

I’m very excited to offer this free printable. It is the first among others that I hope to release over the coming year. My wish is to expand this blog as a trusted source of support, encouragement and answers to bolster you into a life of simple living, with less stress.

My simple living blogging goals for 2021

As a result, some of my own goals for the new year include creating and posting additional free downloads and printables, challenges to spur one another along, contests to enter, and lists of some of my favorite things and ideas to help you along with your own goals to start living simply in the new year. The opportunity to become part of an online community where we can share our stories, ask questions, and post ideas that you would like to see addressed here will also be added during the year.

In the meantime, here are a few ideas to help you be kind to yourself until we can kiss 2020 goodbye for good and start living simply in the new year!

5 Ways to slow down right now

  • Stop to breathe. Really. Christmas is over and the days are a little less packed with activity now. So, know is a great time to download a stress or yoga app, or look up easy breathing exercises online. Getting oxygen to the brain and blood stream clears the mind of thought overload and your body of several types of toxins. Also, it contributes to optimal brain function, motor skills, a healthy heart rate, and helps to prevent disease and improve cell regeneration. In addition, it can help you sleep better.
  • So, be sure that you are getting enough rest. This also supports brain detox, stabilizes emotions, and aids in decision making. In other words, hit that pillow a little earlier and you will find that your memory is less foggy. You will be better able to focus, and you will remain more alert throughout your day. (Added bonus: Better decision making means better food choices too!)
Living simply oversized knit
My cozy oversized-knit throw
Take a stroll in nature to reset your perspective
  • Take a daily walk. Just a few minutes a day (15-20 for instance) can refresh and energize you. It will raise your heart rate, which aids in maintaining a healthy body weight. Also, it can renew your outlook, and increase motivation. Bad weather where you are? Get your steps in a store or mall. It’s easy hop on the treadmill if you have one. Or , do laps in a cleared parking lot. Recently, I was able to meet a friend I hadn’t seen in months due to pandemic restrictions. We social distanced, wore our masks, and walked my dog in the park on a cold but sunny day. It was wonderful to actually spend time with a friend and catch up!
Living simply with a healthy mind and body
  • If you aren’t already, start taking a multivitamin if you can, (Naturally, check with your doctor on taking any supplements). I have become very lax on this one, but I’m going to start making sure that I get my daily dose as well. So we can think of each other as we remember to do so each day. I make a habit of taking any meds when I brush my teeth in the morning. It just helps me to remember.
  • Create cozy space. Or, enjoy those holiday lights if they are still up. No need to redecorate your living area or buy anything new here! Light a scented candle, grab a snug blanket and pull it over to your favorite couch or chair. Borrow some soft pillows from another spot, and heat your favorite drink or broth. In addition, pop some corn and cozy-in for a good movie or book. In other words – just treat yourself nicely for a little while.

Together we can rock living simply in the new year!

Barb Steving
Barb Steving

Barb is a simple wife, mom, and friend who loves to share her knowledge of what simple living has brought to her life. She shares how you, too, can achieve peace and joy by slowing down and enjoying simplicity right where you are.

simple living snowy woods

Living Simply overlook
<em>Overlooking the valley</em>

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4 thoughts on “Living Simply In the New Year

  1. So happy to see the blog growing & excited to see what the future holds! Love you sis! ๐Ÿ’‹๐Ÿ’‹

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