Last week I had a stressful week. I’d flown to Buenos Aires, coming down with a fever that morning, knowing that I had an apartment for a week and pretty sure that I wanted to stay for a month.
The fever stayed with me as I began my search for an affordable apartment in Palermo or Recoleta. The apartment owners have bad memories when it comes to updating their calendar of availability so after 5 replies telling me that the apartments weren’t available, and my clock rapidly ticking down, the pressure mounted. With an increased budget I finally found a new apartment!
As the relief soaked I got to thinking how I could make life easier for myself.
These are tips I have that can be used regardless of whether you’re living a digital nomadic life like I am:
Let’s Make Life Easier
1. Make decisions early
Sometimes we avoid making decisions, we overthink the options (I know this isn’t only me who does this!) and sleep on it for few nights hoping that the decision will be made for us.
If I’d sat myself down and said “today we make a decision” I would’ve had more time up my sleeve to search for an apartment.
2. Take action
Making decisions are fine and good but we’ve then got to take action, otherwise we haven’t actually made a decision.
For some reason I thought it was a good idea to email an apartment owner, wait until I got a negative reply and then email the next one. Because a reply usually took a day to reach me it meant that the clock was rapidly ticking down to when I’d be homeless. By the third “no” I was a bit over the process so emailed 3 owners that day to speed things up.
3. Get some sleep!
If you’ve ever seen a toddler having a melt down because they haven’t had their afternoon nap you’ll appreciate the power of sleep.
I know when I find myself getting grumpy it’s usually solved by a power nap.
Part of my “capsule” wardrobe. Can you guess my favourite colour?
4. Wear the same clothes every day
If it was good enough for Steve Jobs then it’s good enough for me. By removing the constant decision making about what to wear each day more energy is freed up.
I’d love to say that I had the equivalent of his jeans and polo necks but this digital nomad has far too many clothes!
As I wasn’t sure when I was returning to New Zealand I took more clothes than normal because I figured that they’d only be sitting in a storage unit if I didn’t bring them with me.
I’ve recently met two women who have been travelling together for a couple of years. They each have 3 tops and 3 bottoms! I was very impressed with this simplicity, although I did think that I’d need a little more variety.
5. Buy non-perishables once a month
We used to do this on the farm where I grew up. Once a month we’d drive an hour to the local supermarket and fill up our trolley with everything we needed.
All of meat and vegetables were grown on the farm. Our milk (in glass bottles!) was delivered in crates, along with our newspaper, by our local mail man.
It used to be great to look in our pantry after our shop as there was so much to choose from!
6. Online grocery shopping
Go one step further and order your groceries on line. No time spent getting to and from the market or waiting in check out queues.
I used to do this in London when I was doing corporate lawyer hours. I did have an issue that the food was delivered in plastic bags (which I gave up years ago) so I didn’t order on line that much.
Do you know of a service that doesn’t use plastic bags?
7. Plan out your meals
Get out those gorgeous cook books and plan your meals out. For a week. For a month.
I used to love doing this when I was in New Zealand and had my cook books with me. A cup of coffee, lovely photos to look at and a pen and paper to create my shopping list as I went.
This is such a time and energy saving as you don’t need to be having to make a decision each meal as to what you’re going to make.
8. Cook double
Making too much for dinner so that I can have leftovers for lunch is something I often do.
As a solo traveller I get tired of cooking for myself all the time and this gives me time off.
Simple huh? When we are rushing through life, keeping ourselves busy with all kinds of things, we often forget to stop and give our minds and bodies a break.
Find a quiet space, away from kids, away from devices, and take 10 slow breaths.
Then have a hot chocolate. It helps with the breathing . . .
A hot chocolate, with a dash of chilli, while sitting on the shores of Lake Atitlan in Guatemala. The perfect place to catch your breath.
Get a cleaner.
Get a gardener.
Hire anyone that takes a job off your hands that you don’t like or that takes up too much of your time.
I’m sure there are many more tips for making life easier. Let me know what your favourite ways of making life easier are.