If work is taking a toll on your mental health, you can find balance by simplifying other areas of your life

woman working at home

Summary List Placement

One of my coaching clients asked what she could do to build more mental strength fast. She was overwhelmed and exhausted and felt ineffective in almost every area of her life, especially in her job. Her health was declining, her finances were out of control, and she never got enough work done to feel satisfied professionally.

She said, “I have plenty of support — an acupuncturist, nutritionist, personal trainer, chiropractor, therapist, business coach, and financial advisor.” Her daily routine involved sprinting from yoga class to various appointments, and her spare time was spent trying to follow through with all the different advice she was getting from the experts in her life.

She didn’t realize her lack of productivity didn’t stem from internal weakness. It stemmed from too much external activity. Simplifying her life was the key to becoming mentally stronger.

When you’re struggling in life, ask yourself whether you need to change yourself or change the environment. Sometimes, a few modifications to the world around you is all it takes to feel stronger and become better. And those helpful modifications usually involve making life simpler. Here’s why mentally strong people rely on simplicity as a way to set themselves up for success:

Simplicity reduces decision fatigue

There’s a reason Steve Jobs wore the same black turtleneck every day — he didn’t want to waste brain-power picking out his outfit. There’s a lot of wisdom in that.

Mentally strong people know that decisions require mental energy. And your brain runs out of energy when you make too many decisions — just like your body runs out of energy when you’re working out.

Eliminating the need to make some simple little decisions — like what shirt to put on in the morning — frees your brain to focus on more important decisions. That can help you become a better decision-maker.

If you doubt that decision fatigue is a real problem, consider this: Research shows judges grant parole 70% of the time in the morning as compared to less than 10% in the afternoon. Researchers suspect when their brains get tired later in the day, they’re more likely to go with the default option — stay in prison.

Even if no one’s freedom is at stake, you likely make some important decisions every day in your professional life. Whether you plan out important meetings ahead of time or maintain a simple wardrobe, simplifying your life could ensure you have more mental strength to tackle tough decisions.

Automatic habits are easy to follow

Mentally strong people don’t have more motivation or willpower than everyone else. Instead, they know how to work smarter, not harder. They create healthy habits for themselves and make those habits easy to commit to by making them automatic.

You have certain daily habits that require little mental energy because they’ve become automatic. For example, you likely have a certain shower routine —maybe you shower first and brush your teeth after. Or, maybe you always brush first and shower second.

When you have automatic or paired habits, you don’t need to …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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