Ways To Make Life Simpler

6:08 AM Amer Bekic 0 Comments

The best way I've discovered to make life simpler is to ignore things. Not everything, of course. Just certain things.

1) Ignore all advice that appears to be based on a depressive or hopeless attitude -- for example, people will tell you, "Never get married because there's such a small chance that it will work out," or "Forget your dreams. Just get a practical degree and a steady job," or "The system is corrupt and there's nothing you can do about it," or "90% of businesses fail in the first 10 years, so what makes you think you'll succeed?" or "I'm pretty sure there are a thousand laws against having your own pet badger."

Reject them out of hand.

You don't suck. You have a heart. You were born with unique talents. Your life belongs to you and you should take it in your hands and do something memorable with it. The only way to succeed is to close your mind to everyone who tells you to stop succeeding.

2) Ignore every sentence that starts with "You can't" or "You shouldn't" or "Why would you want...?" For example, many people try to simplify their life by trying the 100 Thing Challenge (Minimalist Fun: The 100 Things Challenge). If you mention this to your friendly neighborhood group of friends, I guarantee that some of them will fire back with these "You can't" or "You shouldn't" sentences. "You can't really live with less than 100 things. What about your clothes?" Or, "Why would you want to get rid of all the cool things you have?"

Forget them. You've decided to try something cool, something that's sure to rattle your universe and give you some perspective, and you can totally do it because you can totally do whatever you want. You're an adult.

Your friends will roll their eyes and say, "Whatever, Isaac. Have fun with that." And in three months you'll be a new person, well on your way to averting a mid-life crisis and finding zen. How cool is that?

3) Ignore all categorical comments about you. "You're really more of a computers guy, so you probably wouldn't be interested." Don't even be offended by that statement, because offense indicates validity. You're not a computers guy. You're an infinitely complex DNA-and-glucose-powered organism, equipped with billions of neural pathways for ideas to surf on. And there are billions more just waiting for you to power them up!

You can get into anything you want. You can change anytime you want. Yes, change is possible. Anyone who tells you that it's not is a steaming pile of "depressive or hopeless attitude" (see above). There's no reason why you should let someone tell you who you are, what you're built for, or why you exist.

Let your inner Elvis tell you what's funky and go for it.

4) Ignore anything that claims to simplify life by adding something new. Email newsletters, novelty products, dating services, outsourced personal assistants, and life hacks will not make your life simpler. Prove me wrong, I dare you. If your life is too complex, the way to fix it is to remove the things that don't matter. Unsubscribe. Get a refund. Go outside. Take more time to relax. Shave away all the thousands of bits of nonsense that attack you every day. Pull your shoelaces out of your sneakers and throw them away.

Then focus in on the things that really matter: your family, your community, climbing trees, smiling at strangers, taming your pet badger. Make life good by spending more time with the good parts.

So that's my advice. Practice up your ignoring and you'll have it much easier.