Minimalist Mantras: 4 Things to Remember When Life is Getting a Little Too Complicated

updated May 4, 2019
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Life can be busy. It can also be fast, complicated, and stressful. With the current trend toward living minimally, many people are looking for ways to simplify and cope with this day-to-day noise. Next time it all threatens to overwhelm you, try reminding yourself of one of these four simple mantras.

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This Too Shall Pass

Cliché, but true. When we’re in the middle of a busy time or a stressful situation, it can be like having blinders on. We can’t see our way out of it and lose all perspective. In times like this I like to ask myself, “Will it matter in one year? In six months? In a week?” Often the answer is a resounding, “Of course not,” which helps me gain some perspective on the situation.

Just Say No

Confession: I am The Worst at this. In fact, I consider my personal life motto to be Say Yes to Life, meaning that if you ask me to go on holiday with you, meet you for a cocktail after work, or help you out with a project, I’ll do my best to make it happen. On any given week I might have a dinner with friends, a date, work drinks, marathon training, and French class scheduled, leaving me a frazzled and exhausted mess by the time the weekend rolls around.

But I’m slowly learning that not over-scheduling yourself means scheduling some you-time into your week. Instead of seeing that mid-week Wednesday as “open” because it’s the only night you don’t have something on, try seeing it for what it is: an important appointment with relaxation, enabling you to enjoy the other stuff that much more.

Don’t Borrow Trouble

Also known as Don’t Get Ahead of Yourself and For Heaven’s Sake Don’t Worry Unnecessarily, this is aimed at those for whom “what if” is a way of life. It can be really hard to break the cycle of needless worrying, but having a heart-to-heart with yourself about what you’re really worried about and how bad it would really be if it did come to pass can do wonders. And if that doesn’t work, a fun distraction from the situation never hurts.

Less is More

This, and its sister Keep it Simple, can be applied to just about any situation or activity in life. From design to dinner to broaching a tricky conversation, avoiding over-complication is never a bad idea. So next time you’re planning a 5-course dinner party or launching an ambitious DIY project, ask yourself if things could be simplified without harming the result.

Do you have a minimalist mantra, something you remind yourself of when life gets too hectic? Share it below!

Re-edited from a post originally published 7.16.15-NT