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Today I’ll share with you how I want to grow in three areas connected with the Slow and Happy blog subjects. They are minimalism, health + ecology, and slow living. There is nothing radical or extremely difficult in my plans for this year, so surely they can inspire you and maybe you’ll join me to some extent. As an addition, I’ll write down here also what approach to blogging I want to keep in coming months.

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simple and slow living plans for the new year - a simple year 2018: minimalism, health, ecology, slow life, current blogging approach, conscious life - new years resolutions by a minimalist mom

Simple living plans for 2018

1 | Minimalism: Decluttering the whole home once and for all.

I’m a minimalist for 5+ years (and here are my 5 Thoughts after 5 Years of Being a Minimalist) and I can definitely tell you that minimizing your possessions is not a once in a lifetime task. Our needs change, things become worn out, items keep coming to our homes. We have to reassess our belongings from time to time.

But what made me want to declutter the whole home at once right now? My Boys! My boys, aged 1 and 3,5 learn to climb into new home’s spaces every day and love to pick everything that’s in their reach. Of course, parents should learn kids not to take some items and we should do it by speaking to our kids, explaining…

But, hello, Reality! Kindly explanations don’t work every time and sometimes you have to keep an eye on the dinner you prepare instead of explaining and asking for a good behavior.

The culmination for me was a day when I found myself following my Boys and preventing them from taking what they shouldn’t take or taking it from their hands. Even when I was in the bathroom, I was thinking: What is left on the countertops in the kitchen that they could take and hurt themselves or maybe break the thing? Will they find the way to open that cupboard?

It wasn’t a life. Right now I’m in the middle (or slightly after the half) of my work to declutter our apartment.

I’ve already gone through every item in our kitchen, bathroom and hall wardrobe. Now I declutter with no mercy, asking the question:

Do I use it?

Do I need it?

Do I like it?

And I don’t keep any items that are uncategorized or have no use. When I find something broken – I repair it immediately or get rid of it.

I will give, sell or throw out things that I know I’ll no longer use.

Some things go to our basement for a quarantine. Also, additional plates and cutlery (for guests) go to the basement.

Why I’m doing it once and for all (ok, let’s be real, for a few months)?

I’ve observed that when you declutter some shelves or rooms but not every area at home, clutter goes to the tidy areas and it doesn’t give the desired effect. And it’s exactly what also Marie Kondo recommends, in her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up.

I’m preparing a guide for you about how to declutter if your excuse is your 9 to 5 job or having little kids (I have!).

See all articles from the category Minimalism.

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2 | Health & ecology: Learning slowly the less waste approach.

I’ve been interested in the zero waste movement for a few years. But let’s be honest: when you read those articles, they seem to demand so much from us. We see all our weaknesses comparing ourselves with the eco-gurus and we want to change and be eco-perfect. Hey, but it’s impossible to do it in one day!

Habits and ways how we use to do everything, from transportation to writing things down, to cleaning and shopping – those habits are strong and there are so many of them to change.

I’ll repeat here what I’ve written some time ago: How to Make Life Changes? – Slowly.

Take small steps. They’ll add up. And when you’ll think back to who were you, what were you doing and what were your habits three years ago – you’ll see a BIG difference. Slow living can be effective.

See one example how it works in Anthony Ongaro’s article: Slow Down and Keep Going.

Until now I’ve implemented the zero waste (or less waste) approach in some little areas. For example, we take our cotton bags for shopping, I use reusable cotton handkerchieves and reusable makeup removal cotton pads.

This year, I plan to implement using more cleaning products that are made of natural ingredients, safe for health, very simple, made of only a few ingredients and mostly home-made. What’s waiting for me is researching, learning, trying, failing, improving and succeeding.

See all articles from the category Health.

3 | Slow living: Live a slow life, with less stress.

What I’ll be working on to live slower:

– Getting to know my priorities.

– Planning my days so that my schedule aligns with my priorities.

– Allowing fewer distractions in my everyday life.

I want to read less on the Internet. If I’d like to develop in a certain subject, I’ll try to choose books which content is statistically better proven and more detailed, helpful and powerful than information on the Internet.

– Spending more time joyfully with my family.

– To reach the slow living goal, I need to work on simplifying my work tasks, paring them down to the essential things, experimenting with what I need and without what actions my business will grow as I want it. Finding how much time is consumed by every action and what effects it gives. Is the time/money/attention/effort invested proportional to the effects?

Where to start experimenting on which work tasks you can let go? Check The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss.

See all articles from the category Slow Living.

Additional: My current blogging approach.

As I’ve mentioned above, I want to read less on the Internet so I’ll have more time for creating. I’ll keep reading my favorite authors, writing about minimalism, simple and slow living (and probably books/articles recommended by them): Courtney Carver, Cait Flanders, Tammy Strobel, Leo Babauta, Joshua Becker, Francine Jay and TheMinimalists.

In February I’ll experiment with almost no FB, Twitter and Pinterest activity except for informing (only once) about new articles on the Slow and Happy blog. I’m curious how it’ll affect my blog. On one hand it means less promotion of the articles but on the other hand, it equates more time and more focus on creating more or better content.

Check my ebook: A Little Guide to Slow Blogging.

What other minimalists say:

How I Make Quarterly Goals Work for Me by Tsh Oxenreider

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Ula Archer

Woman. Wife to one Husband. Working at home mother to two Boys, the Older and the Younger. Minimalist. Reader and self-developer. Simplifying my life to regain my space, time, energy and attention. Optimizing. To be happier, more productive, more smiling, more giving to my family. To have more time for walks in nature.