As I get older (not that I am old) I notice more and more how having more stuff actually causes more stress. We do live in a consuming society. The next new gadget promises new and exciting features that you CAN NOT live without. We live with what we generally have defined as first world problems. These are all very important problems to us but really in the grand scheme of things if we admit it they are not.
As I not only observe my own behavior in keeping up with the Jones’s I realize that the things that really are important aren’t things. All the behavior we exhibit maintaining and managing these things are never looked at personally. We don’t take the time to evaluate our ways of doing things and keep doing them the way we always did them.
We forget to make intentional choices about what we are really doing.
I believe being intentional with our time, energy and resources are choices that we all have to come up against in all areas of our lives. We all enjoy many, many activities but are they really producing the long term results that we crave as humans. Our most basic requirements as humans are forgotten when we focus on some of the more materialistic things in our lives.
Let me back up a bit just so you understand something……
I am not saying don’t have things. I am saying be intentional so you can enjoy those things.
As a small business owner many tasks are overwhelming. We wear 10 different hats and usually love it until something happens, we try to do too much and then we are in trouble. It happens to the best of us.
So what is minimalism and why would it be beneficial to business?
Minimalism is the idea of living with less or only with what is deemed important. Decluttering is one part but also thinking about what is truly needed and if it’s really needed going to the simplest form.
In accounting, a minimalist system would be a clean streamlined system with clear lines in the process. A simple system looks like:
- A clear invoice and delivery system
- Accept payment in only 1 or 2 ways
- Vendors are paid on 2 days a month
- Vendors are paid electronically via Bill Pay or with Bill.com
- Paperless filing system
- Electronic payroll system
There are many, many more ways to simplify your accounting system. These seem like common sense but most of the time business owners are so busy these small systems are overlooked.
The next step in your minimalism is to decide what are the most important tasks that you have to do yourself and what tasks can you trust a professional to handle? Remember the idea of minimalism is to declutter and reduce the things in your life that are not adding to your life and or your business. Very rarely are business owners experienced accountants therefore it takes two to three times longer to complete a task. Does this really add to your business?
Start small. Sometimes realizing you made things harder than they need to be is the first step. I would just start small. Analyze each step and see where you can reduce and declutter your systems.
Her at MOD Ventures we do this regularly either internally or with clients. It’s usually the first step when we are hired to do new work. Re-evaluating systems and simplifying them are what we do best! If you need help, give us a call.
Reduce and Declutter = Happy Life