November 2020 Challenges

It is November in the chaotic year of 2020. Here it is also late Spring/ early Summer – so it is a season of light, growth, and fresh beginnings, with much time spent outdoors.

This month I would like to set 2 overarching intentions.

To focus on the essentials of life by simplifying daily details.

I will focus on the creation of a simple and beautiful life, based on the basic principles of Minimalism.

I have been learning more about Stoicism too, so will keep some of this philosophy close to my daily actions and decisions.

To achieve more, with a simple daily system.

I want to work more productively when I work, so I can be present with my family and friends when I am with them.

I want to organise and automate more work, so I set myself up to spend less time achieving the same amount of work.

This month – NOVEMBER

As previously, I have divided my monthly challenges into 4 life quadrants – Health, Self, Wealth, and Social.

I recently came across this quote. Our lives are made up of these different areas which all need attention to make us full, complete people.

“There is an Indian proverb that says that everyone is a house with four rooms, a physical, a mental, an emotional, and a spiritual . Most of us tend to live in one room most of the time but unless we go into every room every day, even if only to keep it aired, we are not a complete person.”

Rumer Godden
    • Sun salutations & core exercises & water & daily exercise and run 2 times a week
  2. SELF
    • Spend a minimum of 2 hours a day on my digital business – working with a system including:
    • Read my paper books
    • Invite friends for outdoor meetups
    • Organise a neighbourhood get together
    • Celebrate 2 family birthdays – my husband & my younger child!
me, by Sharday Swanepoel

October Challenges Feedback

In October I mostly seem to have found my rythmn. Almost every day I am:

  • meditating
  • drinking water
  • doing my stretching to strengthen my core to support my back
  • writing (journaling or morning pages)
  • visualizing my future
  • learning something – reading or listening
  • working on my business for 2 hours
  • exercising – a run or a cycle or a dog walk or a swim

A regular meditation practise is a life-changing habit. I find myself sharing with stressed friends that meditation is changing who I am and how I react to life. I often use the Calm app and am writing this post listening to their music.

Sometimes I combine writing and visualization. Sometimes I combine meditation and visualization.

Drinking water and stretching and exercising are all part of looking after myself physically. As I am ageing and can feel my body changing so these habits become more important.

I have been doing most of these small practices for long enough now that they are part of my day and I miss them when I don’t do them. So it is more like the habits lead me now.

Areas Needing My Attention

There are some areas which are works in progress:

Doing One Thing At A Time

I have constantly to remind myself to do one thing at a time. I now turn my phone over when I need to concentrate (as I do now, writing).

But I notice I have so many tabs open on my laptop. They all contribute to making me feel more stressed and scattered. They are like a live To-Do Tab List watching me, and make me feel like I need to speed up.

Time to pause. Time to close some apps. I will still be able to access them when I have time to attend to them.

Most Important Task

Organising my day with Leo Babauta’s Most Important Task. I am struggling with this and am back to To Do Lists. Long ones.

I prefer to check off the easy tasks, but it is a case of elephant in the room, as the task I should prioritise hangs over me, creating stress.

It is interesting to learn this personally, through becoming aware of the feelings that rise up.

By avoiding doing the most important task first, I have a nagging low-level sensation of stress.

By tackling the most important task first, the day feels lighter and is accompanied by energy and a morale-boosting feeling of achievement.

Taking Real Action Instead Of Laying More Groundwork

Taking action to achieve my goals, not just learning or list checking. I am struggling with this. A lot of personal knowledge acquisition happening, but less action where it is needed.

I am learning that I love to be prepared and to lay foundations.

I am also learning that I fear taking the action necessary to make a difference.

With my increased awareness about this, I am however better able to face up to myself, and then nudge myself into doing the action that counts.

Why Do I share this?

I share these posts as an invitation to get inspired, to get in touch if you want to simplify, or to join me on with monthly challenges.

I believe that some of my struggles may well be relatable to others. I hope by sharing my challenges here, it could make someone feel better about hers.

Carry on learning, being gentle with yourself, and making progress towards creating the life that you want.

Instagram, Blog, and An Opportunity

If you enjoy images and others’ wisdom, and think you might like to follow my experience as I learn and share – please follow me at my Simple Beautiful Life Instagram page. It’s about the things I believe in – simplicity and living according to priorities and some motivation and business posts.

If you enjoy reading – please browse my Simple Beautiful Life blog where I write about simplifying life and challenging myself to get better at living a good life, and about running a business online, on my own terms, and according to my own values.

If you are looking for an opportunity to learn new marketable skills, you can take advantage of the free training offered by the same team of people who are teaching me how to run a business online.

When I came across them I was looking for an opportunity, but I wasn’t sure what I needed, or wanted.

  • I didn’t realise I would be able to start a business aligned to my values and passions, from home, in my time.
  • I certainly didn’t realise what a beneficial and beautiful journey of personal growth and development I was setting out on.

So if you are looking for direction and training and support and to start fresh, have a look at this video to learn more about what is changing all aspects of my life.

It could change yours too.