Going without. Success in life simplified

I remember the moment when I decided that I needed to achieve balance in life. As I reflected on one day of feeling completely wrecked, I felt this strong urge to make some changes to my daily life. No more caffeine induced shakes. No more impulse purchases.  No more putting my credit card down on the bar.

This was going to be possible because I had done it before. In 2009 I made the decision to transform myself into a healthy person. With a diet consisting of high protein and steamed vegetables and a workout regime involving two gym sessions a day, seven days a week for nine months. I lost 65kgs.

The outcome was “HELL YEAH!” The process itself was both extreme and isolating.

There had to be a better way to push positive boundaries without turning my life upside down. What if, instead of eliminating caffeine and alcohol completely and cutting up my credit cards, I could set micro-objectives and see how they effected me after thirty days? Oh yes. 

Micro-objectives were set and here are the outcomes:

  • No new technology was purchased.
  • I cut down to one coffee a day. It was half soy.
  • Alcohol was consumed sparingly and only in the light of day.

It was an experiment in minimising daily weight. The impact was more clarity. The vision was to simplify my life.

In March I will be relying solely on Rdio for my music experience. No iPod. No iTunes. Just the cloud and my iPhone. For me, is music simply about access? Can I go without my 10,000 song library? Or is it about tangibility and ownership?

That is something I’ll be writing about in the next few weeks as I press publish every day alongside the collective. Feel free to join us here.

Three days sans GHD

This week I am heading up to Sydney for three days.

In the spirit of going without (and against my female instincts), I will be traveling with my backpack and laptop bag. No carry-on luggage this time.

The following items will be included:

  • Leather jacket
  • Two tops
  • Skirt
  • T-shirt
  • Jeans
  • Heels
  • Thongs
  • Dr Dre Beats headphones
  • Lenovo T410 laptop
  • Toiletries

No outfit variables. No iPad. No GHD hair straightener. No books. Just 7kgs.

The goal? To see if less luggage equals less drama.

The logic? If I remove the mental weight of needing to cater for every potential situation then I can just feel focused and have a rad time while traveling/working. I can also save on some major packing time.

I can always go shopping, right?


Going without in February

I want to reduce the mental weight of my current daily habits.

So, for the month of February, I’m going to focus on some things that require minimal effort with maximum return. I am testing the theory of going without.

I am literally fueled by caffeine. In an effort to treat my pounding caffeine headaches, I am going to cut down to one latte a day and replace my milk with soy. I should also add that living in Melbourne will not make this an easy task.

I’m not going to purchase any new technology. I recently gave my iMac to my parents. Not only was it a much appreciated gift but also a major weight off my own shoulders. I took a computer out of my bedroom and saved myself some mental space by clearing out that corner. Now all I have is space and white walls.

I am going to go without the partying. It doesn’t achieve anything. I spent three years chilling out and the last year making up for it. For now, it will be the occasional beer or scotch on a Sunday afternoon in summer.

Finally, I will attempt to minimise my self serving behaviour. I’ll try and share positive energy with others and see where that leads me.

I’ll let you know how it goes.