Friday, January 12, 2018

A Simplified Life by Emily Ley

I have read a number of books on organizing my life. This one is certainly the most beautiful I've seen. The stunning photographs add a sense of warmth to what can be a very difficult process.

Ley helps us simplify ten areas of life. In each area, she has us take an inventory, set up accountability and gives resources, and helps us create successful routines. The goal is for all of these to work together to create the life we truly desire. Part of the process is discovering our gifts and creating routines that resonate with them and our personality style.

I really like that she insists we spend no money on this process. Part of her strategy is that we become content with what we have. I like her philosophy behind the suggested actions. She starts with decluttering, for example, but with a view to making the home restful and a place of connection. Next comes cleaning out the closet, but with a view to dressing the way we like and that makes us comfortable. She goes on to encourage us to create meaningful meal times, work on schedules and finances. I like that in her section on technology, she suggests turning off notifications. Yes, they are so very distracting.

Perhaps my favorite strategy is the “brain dump.” Ley suggests writing thoughts in a journal. Dumping all those thoughts onto paper makes space in the mind for rest, providing the gift of brain space. I really like that idea.

I recommend this book to women who are looking for a gentle and thoughtful book on simplifying life. You'll find lots of questions and writing space to work out your own plan around the many suggestions and strategies Ley provides.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

Emily Ley is the founder and creative director of Emily Ley Paper & Gifts. She is the creator of the Simplified Planner. She has a degree from the University of West Florida, was the director of the city ballet, then worked in nonprofit management and public relations before creating her own company. She has received numerous awards for her design work. She and her husband have three children. You can find out more at

Thomas Nelson, 224 pages.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

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