Monday, February 1, 2016

Emily Ley's Simplicity Challenge

It's FEBRUARY, you guys.  One whole month of 2016 down.  Craziness.  January usually flies by for me - I'm still living on a high from the holidays and going strong on my resolutions/goals for the new year - but come February, things start to drag.  The days are still long and dark (and cold) and the lofty resolutions I set for myself are a little easier to forget about, like going for walks every day because like I mentioned, it's cold.  During February, I could definitely use a little kick in the butt.


Enter in Emily Ley.  I'm sure you're all familiar with Emily Ley thanks to her fabulous planners, but I recently stumbled upon her Instagram account and became intrigued by the Simplicity Challenge she's been hosting.  Basically what it is is 1 quick, simple step to simplifying your life every day for one month.  She's been doing it for the entire month of January, but I'm way behind and instead of just starting in the middle, I thought I'd go ahead and use it as my motivational boost for February.  Anyone want to join me?!  I've listed each day below for easy reference, but you can also check out Emily's Instagram account for all of the postings. 

Here goes nothing...

DAY 1 | Walk your home with a trash bag or five.  Be ruthless.  Papers.  Receipts.  Tags.  Empty bottles.  Lone board game pieces.  Go.

DAY 2 | Set a recurring alarm for every weekday.  If you're letting your kids wake you, set it for one hour earlier.

DAY 3 | Do something with all those precious photos and videos on your phone.  Print.  Back-up.  Store.

DAY 4 | Simplify your phone.  Delete old contacts and unused apps.  Consider moving time suckers to the back. Change your lock screen to something that makes you happy and your wallpaper to something simple.


DAY 5 | Put two things that make you happy on your bedside table.  You should also have a lamp and a clock.  That's it.  Move anything else.

DAY 6 | Clean out your fridge.  Check expiration dates and throw things away.

DAY 7 | Restock anything that needs restocking in your bathroom.  Cotton balls.  Q-tips.  Toilet paper.  Shampoo. Toothpaste.  If you don't have extra, make a list.  Take that notepad into the bathroom with you and take inventory.

DAY 8 | Start the habit of throwing a small load of laundry in every morning.

DAY 9 | Go put gas in your car today.  While you're there, clean out your car.  Throw trash away. 


DAY 10 | Buy a few birthday cards.  Keep them on hand for birthdays that pop up that you're not prepared for.

DAY 11 | Put your number on the Do Not Call List.  Call 1-888-382-1222.

DAY 12 | Walk your house with a donate bag.  Schedule a pick-up or drop it off as soon as the bag is full.  Walk your house with your keys if you have to.

DAY 13 | Dump your purse out.  Throw away trash and create a little bag of essentials: chapstick, Kleenex, Shout wipes, gum, etc.  Make your bag work for you.

DAY 14 | Pull out all of the formal dresses in your closet that you'll never wear again and choose a charity to donate them to.  Put the bag in your car to deliver it.


DAY 15 | Do nothing.  Today is your day to be still for 10 minutes.  Go outside and sit and soak in the world.  Clear your mind.  You deserve it.

DAY 16 | Clean out your medicine cabinet.  Trash duplicates and anything that may be expired.  Make sure you have the essentials on hand.

DAY 17 | Quit something today.  Just say no.

DAY 18 | Write out three simple dinners you can make with the ingredients already in your pantry.

DAY 19 | Detox your social media feeds.  Unfollow anyone who makes you feel inadequate (even if it's friends).  Follow inspirational and encouraging accounts.  Remember for 2016: social media is a highlight reel.


DAY 20 | Clean off your desk.  Keep only the essentials including your computer, mousepad, a cup of pens, a lamp and one other special thing.  Ditch the clutter.  Wipe that desk (and keyboard) down.

DAY 21 | Clear the clutter on your computer.  Delete unused files and organize important ones.  Empty the trash.  Set a new desktop wallpaper.

DAY 22 | Take inventory of all the items you allow to come into your mailbox.  Visit catalogchoice.org and directmail.com

DAY 23 | Write your morning checklist and tape it to your fridge.  Write your evening checklist and tape it to your bathroom mirror.

DAY 24 | Schedule a getaway for sometime in 2016.  A vacation or stay-cation: put the dates in your planner.


DAY 25 | Make a list of 10 easy go-to meals.  Tape it to your fridge for simple meal planning.

DAY 26 | Create your own Sunday prep-list.  What makes you feel prepared for the week ahead?

DAY 27 | Write down ONE goal for this year.  Just one.  Tape it somewhere important so you see it every day.

DAY 28 | Organize your inbox.  Use unroll.me.  Try the Flag or Trash method for Inbox Zero every day: red flag emails that need attention later.  Delete everything else.  Inbox Zero.  Done.

DAY 29 | Stock up your household items you use all the time.  Pay attention to BOGO sales.  Make a list of these.

Let me know if you're joining along!  Cheers to an organized, happy, simplified February :)

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43 comments

  1. What a great challenge. Sometimes one simple step a day is the only way to get things taken care of around the house. THanks for the list, I'll join in here and there as we did some of these in January. Have a great day!

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  2. I definitely need to do some (if not all of these)! I definitely need to clean out my phone. And it's probably time to clean out my inbox too! Thanks for sharing pretty lady! <3, Pamela Sequins & Sea Breezes

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  3. I have been really into that this year! I have been just throwing junk away and organizing it. Today my goal was to organize my hard drive and picture files, then back up online too! It makes me feel so much less stressed lol. I need to follow along with some of these tips too. Fun Challenge!!

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  4. Can't wait to see how this challenge goes for you!! I've seen it floating around insta! I like that it's only 1 thing a day! xo, Biana -BlovedBoston

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  5. I love that this challenge breaks it down to one small thing a day - definitely manageable. Good luck!

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  6. I like this idea! When you feel like you have to do all of these things at once it seems overwhelming... but when you break it down day by day it actually seems so doable and easy!

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  7. I LOVE this! I have been following a long on her instagram, but I haven't completed every day of the challenge. Sidenote: I actually met her when I bought my planner and I am obsessed with her and her adorable babies. I can't even handle how cute they are.

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  8. OK - this is just speaking to me. I love how SIMPLE it is - its not something crazy, like wash down your walls & blinds & curtains in 15 minutes. These are do-able!! I especially love the day where you get rid of people on social media that makes you feel bad about yourself. I'm totally doing to do this!! Thanks for the idea... & the link to her. I have actually never heard of her & just love her hashtag of #GraceNotPerfection - that's my kinda gal!

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  9. What a great challenge!!

    Her Heartland Soul
    herheartlandsoul.com

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  10. So many fabulous ideas! Even though I'm pretty anti-clutter I bet I could find a lot of useless items if I was ruthless and went around with a trash bag. I also need to unenroll from a ton of emails. Why do companies think they need to send out eblasts 2-5 times per day? Cheers to a fabulous week gurlie <3
    Green Fashionista

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  11. I've been following along on Insta!! I always love when I get a freebie day because I've already just done the task (like cleaning out the fridge)

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  12. I love this list of things to do. I haven't been following it exactly, but something about January got me in the mood to clean, purge and simplify and it's been awesome!

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  13. I've seen this floating around as well, and haven't done it. But am tempted to try now that you've mentioned it!

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  14. I love Emily Ley and lots of her tips are so helpful! I made it my goal to get rid of something every day in January and I think I did it!! Definitely need to save this list though, there are some things (digital organization, junk mail, etc) that still need some work for sure!

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  15. Gahhhhh. I want to participate. I want to go home and participate. mehhhhh.

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  16. I LOVE this and am SO going to do it; thanks for sharing, girl!!!!

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  17. This is such an awesome idea - I'm on board!!

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  18. Oh this is great!! I think I may have to join in! Thanks for sharing it!

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  19. How fun and perfect for keeping it real and accomplishing things we may not normally dedicate time too!! Thank you gorgeous!!

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  20. Love this! I definitely need to do the one on Day 3! My Phone storage is almost zero at this point-haha

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  21. I follow her on Instagram, so I've loved seeing all of her quick tips this past month!! Granted, I haven't done all of them, so I need to revisit!

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  22. Oh, I love this! I think things are a bit too hectic over here still as I'm trying to adjust to a new lifestyle, but once things get a little more routine, I'm going to try this challenge out. I think it'll be great! Can't wait to see how it helps you out. x

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  23. a great list.. i'm definitely going to be stealing some of these

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  24. I've been following along with some of these this month with her on Instagram! They are all pretty good ideas.
    Kelsey
    www.thepeacockroost.com

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  25. I started doing this in the middle of the month too. I think it's such a good idea to start over in February :) I'm with you!

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  26. This is such a good idea! I want to follow along!

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  27. What a great challenge and great tips to use even past the challenge!

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  28. I'm going to join you on this one! I follow Emily Ley on Insta and saw this but didn't ever actually do any of these. February 1st is a perfect day to start! Keep me accountable!!!

    Zelle
    Southern Style

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  29. Such a good list of tips and ideas- I definitely have some formal dresses taking up way too much room in my closet!

    xo, Kristina
    Medicine & Manicures

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  30. I followed her whole journey through January, and kept thinking i'm going to do it in February!! And now it's already Feb - better get started x

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  31. I love Emily Ley (and my planner!) so much! This list is amazing!!!

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  32. I'm inspired after reading this post. I just wish I could walk around with a trash bag/donate bag to a few of my husbands things lol. I love being clutter free it just helps keep your mind so much clearer.

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  33. Ahhh I might totally do this-- usually I don't get into challenges, but just looking at the first four or five those are all things I need to do anyway.

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  34. Wow this challenge sounds wonderful!! I need to join in!

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  35. Great challenge I think I could do some of these, but not sure if I'd be motivated to do all of them haha!

    liz @ j for joiner

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  36. Love the idea of this! This list is amazing!

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  37. Wow! Such a helpful list! I do a lot of these things already, but there are plenty more that I could be doing to make life easier!

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  38. This is great. I have already done some of these things, but doing 1 per day is really great!

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  39. These are all SUCH great ideas! I need to get my photos organized for sure, and could stand to take on some of these other tasks this month too!

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  40. Another blogger I follow posted these to her IG each day. I love the concept and even put a few into use. I could do so much more if I could possibly find the time!

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  41. I love following Emily Ley's insta and seeing her posts about this challenge!

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  42. I love Emily Ley! I was doing this in January, but not with fidelity. So, I'm definitely going to do it again! xo, Champagne&Suburbs

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