How Work Life Minimalism Can Lead to Abundance

green plant on white wooden table
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on

I’ve become painfully protective of my morning ritual. If I’m up early enough, I can log in an hour’s worth of reading & writing before anyone invades my cocoon. There is a designated YouTube playlist bookmarked to avoid any aberrant selections. My notebook is handy. I filter in the birds — and filter out the news.

It’s my own thing. It is specific and highly idiosyncratic.

Your journey through the current pandemic is a personal one. In a sense, we have all been thrown head first into the annals of history — and left to our own devices. Each day can be a challenge. Each moment unsettling. Yet, there have been increased moments of clarity. You may have noticed them.

If there is one thing that I’ve learned over the last months it is this: Abundance isn’t really about more. It is not about doing more — or achieving more — or earning more. It is about identifying the moments that bring you more. The moments that expand your world. That fuel you. That become your work life fire.

(Less noise, more signal perhaps?)

Finding more of these moments is the priority. I’ve learned that fewer, in many cases is better, and we can apply minimalism to our work lives. With that — here are a few common work life elements that could be recast with this strategy in mind:

  • Your Network. The number of people with whom we “connect” has grown precipitously over the last decade. While these so called networks may be expansive, they usually have “inspiration” gaps. Take a closer look at your network. Are there individuals that help you feel creative or energized? Someone you can riff with about the state of your industry? You cannot give back to the world — if the fuel is not present.
  • Your Goals. How we view goals, has been a deep concern of mine for some time. Most specifically, their often inelastic nature. We tend to collect goals over time, but fail to consider which goals actually serve us. This can cloud our view and dampen focus. In my course, we spend a fair amount of time reflecting on the goals that live in our heads, but fail to inspire or direct us. Try not to fall into the “crowded” trap.
  • Maintenance. Self-care is a worthy goal. Yet, I’ve seen it become an obsessive chore rather than a dynamic to truly restore ourselves. Integrating self-care options within our daily lives doesn’t need to be a drawn out or elaborate process. Simple solutions, such as jotting down thought & ideas in a notebook to clear your mind or a daily walk, are worthy solutions that have been utilized for centuries.

Do you capture abundance with less? Share your story.

Dr. Marla Gottschalk is an Industrial/Organizational Psychologist who explores the value of core stability to empower work & career. She helps people & teams build a stronger work life foundation through The Core Masterclass and Work Life 101. A charter member of the LinkedIn Influencer Program, she has been featured at the Harvard Business Review, Talent Zoo and The Huffington Post.


4 thoughts on “How Work Life Minimalism Can Lead to Abundance

  1. Hi Marla,
    Are you familiar with Edward Slingerland? Check out his book, “Trying Not to Try.” It addresses the ancient Chinese art of Wu Wei and effortless action, 😉
    Best Wishes


  2. What I realized while dabbling in simple living changed everything. It changed how I pursued minimalism, how I valued myself and my family and even my things. It cleared my head to finally dive in deep and choose simple for good.


  3. Thanks, Marla,
    Good food for thought article, 😊.
    I find abundance is a choice which too often can be forgotten. Focusing on goals to reach can have us look forward to a clock ticking the question, “When am I going to get there?” This can create anxiety that shades abundance with what is missing.
    Whenever I hear the warning bells of upset, I clear my mind by focusing on one of my senses. One I enjoy is the breathing exercise using my sense of touch. I focus on the air going through my nose and out over my lips. In a short time, it brings me to a simplicity that takes me out of my thoughts of reaching a goal and into the present. It is here I get to regroup and empower a value, such as calm or confidence, that changes my perspective, inspiring my actions.
    Best Wishes


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