Simplify September: Tasks to Simplify Your Home, Electronics, and Mind

By Joyce Shulman September 18, 2018

Have you joined our Simplify September initiative yet? It's not too late to jump in! After all, we could all use a little more simplicity in our lives. Right? From the clutter in our homes to the clutter in our heads -- it all could use a little help!

Macaroni Kid founder and CEO Joyce Shulman chose September to simplify because the kids are back in school and parents are getting back to our routines. Now, strategically, is the perfect time to clear the clutter, simplify our lives, and make more space for the things we love.

On each day of September, participants receive an inspirational email from Joyce, along with a daily "task" (something that usually takes 20 minutes or less!) to complete, with the goal of helping you simplify your life.

Here are three of the tasks participants have completed so far this September:

Simplify your electronics: The phone

Step 1: Make a list of the 10-15 phone apps you use every day. Move them to the first "page" of your phone.

Step 2: Go through every app on your phone and, if you haven't used it in three months, delete it. Remember, unlike purging things from your closet that you haven't worn in three months, you can always get an app back if it turns out you miss it or need it, so delete with abandon!

Step 3: Organize your remaining apps by category (for instance, photography, social media, work, etc.).
Do NOT get sucked into playing with apps as you try to decide whether or not to keep them. Set a 20-minute timer if you need to keep yourself on track.

Simplify your house: The closets

While most of our tasks have been 20 minutes, closets can be big. Most of us have more than one that needs attention, so we are going to spread this over a few days this week. If so if you don't complete all of this today, no worries!

For today, let's start with your own closet. Step one: Take everything out. Everything. Now do three things:

1. Look at your closet and consider simple things you can do to improve its organization. See-through baskets on the top shelf for out-of-season things? Special hangers (I love the velvet ones, they take up less space, keep things from slipping and look tidy)? Dividers for a few drawers? If possible take a bit of time to add those organizational things.

2. Get sorting. You know the drill. We need three piles: keep, donate, toss.

3. Put everything back in a way that will make it easy to see everything and access everything. If you have to dig behind a stack of jeans to get to your favorite sweatshirt, that stack will not stay stacked for long.

Get to it. You'll be happy when it's done.

Simplify your mind: Unplug

Make time for a simple pleasure.

Lay in a hammock, drink lemonade, eat a fresh fall apple, take a bath, light a candle, stare at the clouds, or listen to the rain.

Don't worry, next week we will get back to tackling the closets, but your task for today is to identify and enjoy one simple 20-minute pleasure.

Want to join in? It is most definitely not too late to start! Sign up to receive Joyce's free daily emails and join our private Simplify September Facebook group to take part in the conversation.

This was the third story in a series on Simplify September. Want to catch up? Read the first two stories:  Simplify September: Working to Make More Space for What We Love and Simplify September: Toss the Clutter, Make Room for Joy.