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The ability to simplify means to eliminate
the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak.
- Hans Hoffman
Simplify. Easy to say. Hard to accomplish.
My resolution for 2014 consists of one word: Simplify.
There is a lot of noise in our 24/7, information-saturated world. It's great to have options and access to an amazing array of ideas, interesting people, and compelling stories. Curiosity, excitement, interest, exploration, engagement are all great by-products of encounters with the digital world. But, sometimes, a glance at my twitter feed can send my heart racing; so much advice, so many lists, so many things to learn and do! Suddenly, my life feels like a race where I'm always a step behind.
Bye-bye inspiration and energy. Hello, confusion and dissatisfaction.
In pondering the subject and the mechanics of how to build a foundation of simplicity, I've come to a couple of conclusions. The solution is a multi-faceted one, not easily distilled into a quick list. And it involves discipline and making choices.
A major component of establishing the habit of simplifying has nothing to do with organizing your closet, desk, purse, or office.
It's true getting objects, time and clutter under control is essential. But it's not the whole story.
What about people? How we manage, mismanage, or neglect our relationships with other humans often more dramatically impacts the quality of our days than having an impeccably organized underwear drawer.
Honing your listening skills, for example, can be a miracle cure for many business woes. When handling an angry client, knowing how to listen to better solve problems turns can transform anger to gratitude. Guess what? You just created a new champion for your brand. Listening attentively in sales meetings increases the likelihood of acurately assessing a prospect's needs and tailoring the best solution.
In the end, listening well is an art and can be fun, yes fun - Sherlock Holmes, detective fun! Start by listening well - and watch everything else fall into place, simply.
Read Why Your Business Needs A Chief Simplicity Officer and Simplify Your Life
and catch up with the next post on improving your listening skills.
It's easier than you think!