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2. Evaluate your commitments. Look at everything you’ve got going on in your life. Everything, from work to home to civic to kids’ activities to hobbies to side businesses to other projects. Think about which of these really gives you value, which ones you love doing. Which of these are in line with the 4-5 most important things you listed above? Drop those that aren’t in line with those things. Article here.

(Thanks again to Leo from Zen Habits for his wonderful to-do list.)

This is a project I have been undertaking for a couple of years now. About three years ago I was trying to be super-mom. I worked part-time at a professional job, tried to do an at home party plan business (worst mistake I ever made but that’s another story), volunteered for several school committees, and raised two young school-aged children while my husband worked nights. Just writing it out now I’m shaking my head – What was I thinking? I enjoyed all of these things while I was doing them, but the short of it is that it took an awful toll on my family. The kids did not do well being ignored while I was on the computer or the phone. My husband did not like me being out of the house so much, leaving the kids with babysitters, and I can’t really blame him for that.

So, I have evaluated my commitments, and whittled them down to just a few. They revolve chiefly around my family, and my employment. I have promised myself to give my full attention to my family when I am with them, and to stop trying to multi-task 3 and 4 things at a time. The same goes for my work time. I do have some hobbies, many that I have gotten away from while I was busy with the outside pursuits listed above. So I’m going to get back to sewing a quilt for my daughter, that I started years ago. I’ve taken up needlepoint, and work on it a bit at a time. I love to read, and listen to books on tape in the car on the way to work, so I will enjoy that time as well. And I will get back to a routine of working out 2-3 times a week. I did that for years, and I guess I took for granted how good it made me feel. I haven’t worked out regularly in about a year, and at 43 I feel like an old lady (actually I know old ladies that have more energy than I do). Working out again will help me with that, and give me back some energy, and confidence in myself.

And I’ve started this blog. This might be seen as a time waster – but I find this is very important and helpful to me in getting away from my ‘consumerism’ self. My chief hobby as a 18-25 yr old was ‘shopping’. While pleasurable, it really wasn’t very rewarding in the long run. Reading other blogs on frugality, simple living, and financial responsibility (see list on the right) helps me stay focused and motivated. It’s nice to know I’m not alone on this quest!

Have you spend anytime recently evaluating your time commitments? Do you feel you spend your time wisely, in pursuit of the things that are important to you?

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During my new found hobby of reading blogs for simple living, I came across a wonderful gem: Zen Habits.  Okay, you’re probably thinking, what planet have I been on?  I mean the guy have over 75,000 people subscribed to his blog!  WELL, like I said, I’m new to blogging.  But the page that intrigued me the most was this one: The Simple Living Manifesto.  In it, Leo lists 72 ideas to get started with in a quest to simplify your life.  I have decided to take each idea in turn, and write about it.  It will probably take me the better part of a year, but things worthwhile are seldom easy or quick.  I truly believe that by addressing these ideas carefully, over time, it will truly help me find the peace I’m seeking.

I’d like to hear your comments if you have seen this list before, and your experience with trying to implement some of the ideas.

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