How to Create a More Simple Life

The simplification filter with Stephen Chong

The Simplification Filter

It was with great sadness that I learned of the recent passing of a good friend. She was vibrant and full of life. Only 48 years old and she died suddenly and without any warning. This, among other things, got me thinking about ‘time’ and how I use it.
I am a fifty-five year old male and despite a lot of life experience and some limited wisdom, I have no way of knowing how much time I have left on this earth. God willing this time is expressed in the decades rather than the weeks or months … but I just don’t know.
This made me really conscious of how I use my time in the precious moments that remain. I have therefore decided that forthwith there are two overriding considerations. The first is that “there are no more ordinary moments” – every moment is a precious gift that should not be wasted. The second is that “I am not going to be ‘busy’ – this means that I will not be rushing around, hurrying anywhere or doing so much that it cannot possibly fit into the allotted time available.
Given these two rather monumental determinations, I then began to think about how I was going to use my time as effectively as I could. This doesn’t mean that I am now going to try and cram everything I ever wanted to do into a short time frame, i.e. create a ‘bucket list’. More important, I thought, to simplify what I do, i.e. rid myself of ‘stuff’ that is not important, does not serve me well, or takes me away (rather than towards) my goals.
An example of this was when Camilla (my partner) asked me the other day whether I would like to go to lunch with some friends. I thought about this and then said ‘no thanks’ (you enjoy yourself) but I want to stay and have some quality time with the kids (which is really important to me).
Win an iPadConsequently, I’ve now completed an exercise for my personal life that has helped me get clear on the things that are really important to me. It goes something like this …
The list comprises of four columns. The first is a list of ‘tasks’ (all of the ‘stuff that has to be done in my personal life, e.g. doing the gardening. The second column is headed with a ‘P’ (for passion). Do I really like doing this task? Does it light my fire? For the record, I put an ‘X’ in the column for gardening. The third column is headed with a ‘V’ (for value). Does this task add value to my life? Is it important? Do I make money from it? For the gardening, I put another ‘X’. The fourth column is headed by a ‘D’ (for delegate). Meaning that the job can be outsourced or done by someone else.
Having two ‘X’s’ means that I’ve now got a very nice man who comes and weeds, cuts and prunes and I’ve got a spare few hours each weekend to do the things I like, such as spending time with my partner and our children.
Just so you know, I also did the same exercise with ‘the ironing’ and without surprise it got two crosses for “P” and ‘V’ … but how to outsource such a task? I’m not going to give it to Camilla to do … that’s not how it works.
So, ahah, if I can’t delegate the task, I have to change the way I think about it. Okay, so now I put on some nice music, enjoy a glass of white and do the ironing … it’s actually like a kind of meditation. I’ve now changed a chore into (almost) fun.
I then put ‘writing’ (book #4) in the task column of the table. Now this really ‘lights my fire’ … it got two ticks in ‘P’ and ‘V’ and now I’m doing a lot more of what I love doing.
This whole process has allowed me to get really clear on what’s important to me, to do more of what I love and less of what takes me away from my goals. Oh, and by the way, I also did the same exercise for my business. It works just as well in there.
Let’s therefore ‘simplify’ things, rather than constantly filling our time with ‘stuff’ that’s not important and can be easily done by someone else (just like my gardener).



Finding out more about Stephen Chong

Finding out more about Stephen Chong

Stephen Chong of The Music of the Soul
Stephen Chong is a professional development coach and author of the new book Letters Across Time and the popular The Music of the Soul: A pathway to a rich and fulfilling life, now available at good book stores or online at
Fore more inspiring stories, check out these...

Fore more inspiring stories, check out these...

Getting Your Life on TrackGetting Your Life on TrackDo you want to change things up and make your dreams become reality? Sometimes we find we're being held back and we don't know why or by what.

Find out how you can clear obstacles in your life and bring into reality what you really want to be with inspirational author and professional development coach Stephen Chong.
Tips for Achieving Your Weight Loss GoalsTips for Achieving Your Weight Loss GoalsIt can be so much easier achieving KPI's at work but when it comes to making our personal goals real it's another story.

So we turned to inspirational author and professional development coach Stephen Chong to learn from him how to identify and act on our personal goals.
How to Find Your True Path in LifeHow to Find Your True Path in LifeLife can get away on you sometimes and taking time to find your true path can create an abuntantly full and meaningful life.

Learn with inspirational author and professional development coach Stephen Chong how you can do this with these practical and insightful tips.
Finding Space to Listen to Your Creative SelfFinding Space to Listen to Your Creative SelfFor many of us a creative life is a richer life. Creativity comes in so many guises, from cooking to gardening, to painting, to weaving to jewellery making.

So we caught up with author and professional development coach Stephen Chong to explore how you can bring about room for more creativity in your daily life.
Quiet Your Inner Critic and Pursue Your DreamsQuiet Your Inner Critic and Pursue Your DreamsStop letting your persistent inner critic run your life. Boost your confidence with these top 5 confidence boosters and kick your inner critic out of the drivers seat.

Find out what you can do to gain more confidence and help yourself be more successful in life. Stop doubting yourself and allow yourself to stand out in the crowd!

Being Inspired by the Dalai LamaBeing Inspired by the Dalai LamaThere are few people as inspiring as the Dalai Lama so to help bring peace and tranquillity to your spirit let yourself dip into the flow of these inspiring quotes from the man himself.

These uplifting quotes from the Dalai Lama are ideal for cards, a quick email, social media status updates even, so remember to share them!

Rewarding GoalsRewarding GoalsOften we forget to set ourselves a reward for achieving our goal and we get caught up in getting stuck into achieving the next goal.

Yet it's been proved so many times that giving yourself a reward for reaching your goals is a great way to not only congratulate yourself but also to keep motivating yourself to keep going.

Search by Keyword

Search by Keyword

Follow on facebook
Follow on Twitter
Copyright © She Inspires Life Bondi Junction, NSW
2009 - 2017