Leo Babauta over at Zen Habits did me the favor of codifying most of the hard-won simplicity lessons I’ve learned in 4 years of being a dad, plus some I have yet to learn. The post, titled 25 Ways to Simplify Your Life with Kids, is simple, clear, and worth reading all the way through.
I have a house full of kids, and yet I’ve found ways to streamline my life, to find peace and happiness among the chaos. How is this magic trick accomplished? Nothing magical, actually, but just little things that have simplified my life over the years.
The main magic trick, however: making my family my top priority, and choosing only a small number of priorities in my life. If you have too many things you want to do, or need to do, your life will become complicated. But if you choose just a few things that are important to you, you can eliminate the rest, and simplify your life greatly.
A few might be obvious to others, but were revelations when I finally learned them. Make cooking and cleaning a family thing. Get active. Focus on doing, not on spending. These aren’t just feel-good Luddite aphorisms, either; he gives practical suggestions like setting up a single Google Calendar for the family.