SUMMER OF CLARITY: 15 Ways I Simplified Work and Life!

Even when you are intentional with your days, things can start to feel heavy and complex. These clarifying tips will help!
Christi Hegstad August 10th, 2018

If you read my last newsletter, sent over two months ago, you know I intentionally stepped away from many business routines this summer. Perhaps I’ll share in an upcoming post exactly why that felt necessary, but suffice it to say this summer proved the perfect time to take a step back, pull in the reins, and refocus!

Enter: The Summer Of Clarity.

We  have done massive work this season to clarify, simplify, and streamline, with exceptional – and surprising – results both professionally and personally. I want to share some of the most impactful actions with you and I encourage you to give one a try, especially if you feel in a ‘heavy’ season.

I have kept each item brief but am happy to elaborate on any – just post your questions on my Instagram or Facebook and I will do my best to answer!

1. I decluttered my entire office, office closet, and workspace. Purged old papers, shredded outdated files, consolidated binders, minimized supply cabinets, you name it. I also uncovered many books that I will be giving away soon, so make sure you’re on our list if you’d like a chance at great reading material!

2. While I have themed / batched my days for quite a while now, I started batching my weeks, too. This has been monumental! I will definitely be sharing this strategy with my clients this fall!

3. I walked and walked – nearly every morning this summer – and during those walks I had my best business ideas. I also lost about 10 pounds that I had gained over the past year, so that was a fun bonus.

One month's mileage tracker in my bullet journal, complete with self-portrait. :)
One month’s mileage tracker in my bullet journal, complete with self-portrait. :)

4. Sales experts recommend charging $97 instead of $100; research apparently shows people are more likely to buy at the $97 mark even though it’s just a $3 difference. With simplicity and clarity as our focus, we let go of the $97 rationale and rounded everything to the nearest denomination of ten. Sorry, sales psychologists – this is just easier!

5. I moved my writing desk right up to the window. No more office distractions during writing time! (The birds and greenery are more inspiring than distracting. :))

This little cutie visits me every day!
This little cutie visits me every day!

6.  I updated my Vision Statement and began reviewing it, along with my Purpose Statement and Guiding Principles, on a daily basis again. I had temporarily fallen out of that habit, and I could tell!

7. I minimalized my closet. I’m not quite at the capsule wardrobe, but pretty close, and it has been oddly liberating.

8. After building my email list for years, I realized that I really only want to send newsletters to people who look forward to them and open them regularly. Many business owners tout the importance of a big list; I want to make sure everyone on mine is not just receiving but truly and purposefully benefiting. We encouraged those no longer excited to hear from us to unsubscribe. (You can subscribe – or resubscribe – here.)

Clarity leads to bolder actions and greater world-changing.
Clarity leads to bolder actions and greater world-changing.

9. I restructured my coaching offerings to 3 simple packages. In a nutshell, this will benefit everyone involved! (If you are interested in pursuing coaching this fall or winter, be sure to get in touch ASAP.)

10. We systematized a TON. Over the course of the past few months I’ve paid close attention to all repetitive tasks – from email responses to file documentation to home projects – then created systems wherever possible. Like I’ve said for years, systems liberate you! The addition of more systems has been HUGE.

11. I made several significant (aka, scary) changes – but with a time limit. For example, we changed the way we do some of our business processes and will revisit in 6 months to see if we want to continue with those changes. I literally put that review date in the calendar. This time limit has been extremely helpful in preventing the “oh my gosh, now it must be this way until the end of time” way of thinking that can sometimes hold me back.

12. I finalized the 5 Pillars of Clarity and Confidence – the 5 areas that, for 15+ years, I have coached people on the most. Meaning and Purpose serve as the foundation for all 5 pillars. Some clients will focus on one pillar, others will walk through all five – the framework will meet you where you are and help you get where you want/need to be.

Grateful to be in this profession with other stellar coaches!
Grateful to be in this profession with other stellar coaches!

13. I stopped thinking about certain tasks, or transferring them from to-do list to to-do list, and did them. (Novel idea, eh?!) For example, I had two tasks to complete in order to advance my coaching credential to the next level. I’m embarrassed to admit those two tasks lingered for weeks months years … but I completed them, passed my exam, and am now a PCC!

14. Not my proudest moment, but I realized throughout all of this clarifying and simplifying that I had been holding on to some unhelpful ‘nontangibles,’ too: old resentments, expectations for how things ‘should’ be, and the like. I did the necessary mindset work and those seemed to fall away.

15. I journaled a ton. Like with the walking (see #3), and often in combination with the walking, ideas seemed to pour out – many of which led to the items listed here.

And a bonus tip: I went on a 2-week social media detox. I will be writing more about this experience – including the results and surprising discoveries – in an upcoming article, but I highly recommend it even for shorter periods of time.

I still have a few actions to check off my Summer of Clarity list, but starting was the hardest part – now it’s just finishing touches. The resulting clarity has freed up so much mental (and in some cases, physical) space! If one of these ideas resonates with you, give it a try. And if I can support you in any way, feel free to reach out.

Here’s to CLARITY and SIMPLICITY!

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