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31 Days of Simple Home Systems: What is a System?

“SimpleDuring the month of October, I’m participating in The Nester’s 31 Days meme. I think it’s fun, and I always find some great new blogs and ideas from browsing the linkups entries.

This year’s series is Simple Systems: 31 Small Ways to Simplify Life.

From containing projects and other things to creating formulas for getting dressed and folding laundry, I’ll be sharing small, simple ways I reduce decision fatigue in my life at home.

A system is a way of doing things

What is a system and why would we want them?

The dictionary defines system as

a set of connected things or parts forming a complex whole;

a set of principles or procedures according to which something is done; an organized scheme or method.

A method is a “procedure for accomplishing or approaching something,” and a scheme is “a particular ordered arrangement.”

Laying out systems is a way of deciding some “best practices” for your situation and working them into habits within your life.

What is a system? Something that will simplify your life.

Simple systems will simplify life: Try it! Tweet this.

A system is not impersonal if you aren’t

We tend to think of systems as cold and impersonal, like machines. Indeed, machines are a sort of system – a bunch of parts working to make a complex whole in order to accomplish something – but so are people.

Our systems are only cold and impersonal if we make them so or if we surrender our judgment to them. Systems should always be serving our intended ends, and if they aren’t in a particular situation or on a particular day, we are in charge, not the system.

But on average days, having small systems in place to take care of routine procedures is one way to minimize decision fatigue and accomplish your desired ends with less personal resistance and less mental energy and willpower required.

And you know I’m all about that.

We all have systems, but we need intentional ones

In a way, a system is a lot like a routine, and you can find all sorts of advice about routines all over the place. Systems take routine a tad farther, though, by ensuring that each part of the routine is working together with the other parts to accomplish your desired ends. A routine may or may not serve your ultimate purposes. A system is something intentionally pieced together in order to achieve an end result.

So, a system is an intentional routine that has a point.

So, a system is an intentional routine that has a point. Tweet this.

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