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distractionWell, it’s Monday. I did it. A week without email or twitter access on my phone (the two things I check most compulsively). Nobody else said they were going to try it, but I took the plunge anyway. Here’s a few of my thoughts and consequences:

  • Remember that sinking feeling that we got when I first mentioned it? Goes away. Really fast. As in, I’m sitting here now trying to remember what I was worried about.
  • The world didn’t end. Not even once. There wasn’t one message the entire week that couldn’t wait until I had time to go on my iPad or computer and check or answer it.
  • I had access – as noted above, my iPad and laptop still had email (I even left the latter home for the weekend while we went to Michigan to see friends).
  • I have “check e-mail” muscle memory. My phone was near me when we were watching tv; at one point I picked it up, turned it on…and realized I was about to check email. Except there was no email on the phone, so I sheepishly put it back down. This happened more than once, and I find myself wondering when it will stop.
  • I didn’t get bored, but I tended to look at things that either were not emotionally charged or work-oriented, like Instagram, Pinterest (happy pictures!) or reading books through Scribd (I LOVE SCRIBD! Do you have SCRIBD? Why not? Click and get SCRIBD!)
  • That is, mostly not emotionally charged. I also discovered a resurgence of an old habit: news addiction. I scrolled through news stories much more, and that’s a habit I need to nip in the bud.

Now, for those of you who are thinking that “it’s fine for you, Gray, you obviously aren’t as urgently needed via email as I am!” you’re probably right. There were exactly two times – today, in fact – that I tried to pull up email and send it – to the person sitting across from me at lunch.

You know what happened when I couldn’t? I talked to her instead, telling her what the email would have said. I saved her from having to click a little extra, I reduced eyestrain, I increased oxytocin through human interaction.

On the other hand, as Natasha and I were waiting for a movie to start, I realized I had a client that might have sent me a graphic for a publication I’m designing. I went through the hoops and such to try and restore email to my phone. You know what? It didn’t really work – not only did the apps not restore automatically, by the time I got a phone browser to actually look at my account, I had realized that even if they did send the graphic, I couldn’t do anything with it right then.

Incidentally, they still haven’t sent it. Waitasec…no. I’m resisting the urge to check a different tab on the browser and see if they did.

See how easy it is?

Will I put email back on my phone? I think not. I think, now that our KonMari process has given our home the spaciousness we wanted, it’s time to take the “unhurried” part seriously, and this…this feels like a first small step in that process.

How about you? Now that you know it’s not that scary…are you going to try? C’mon; it’s only for a week…

I’m still putting these posts on YouTube, also. If you like them, or have suggestions, please let me know in the comments here or there!

Building the Box

“Please. Draw me a sheep.”

For some folks, reading that is going to make them smile. They remember the story that is attached, of a lost pilot in the desert and a Little Prince who kept him company for a time. I warn you, those who are tempted to pick it up again: it’s not a happy book. It’s a beautiful book, and a poignant book, but it’s not the book to pull out for date night.

I speak from experience.

That particular sentence, though, and the result are a merry little life lesson. I won’t give too much away, but let’s just say that the pilot had not spent a lot of time polishing his sketching skills, and so his many attempts to draw a sheep were met with dissatisfaction from the Little Prince. Finally, frustrated entirely, he simply drew a box and said “the sheep is inside!”

Notice, it doesn't say "Amazon".

Notice, it doesn’t say “Amazon”.

Of course, that meant that the sheep inside was the perfect sheep, exactly as the Little Prince wanted, and so he was able to keep it with him forever.

It’s a neat little parable for a lot of things, and it came to mind as I contemplated a project that has wormed itself into my peripheral internal vision.

The Grand Unified Theory of Me

As you’ve possibly noticed from the many quotes and diverse posts, I’ve been exploring a few particular overlapping venues of the human psyche. There’s the plethora of cognitive fallacies in Daniel Kahnemann’s Thinking Fast and Slow, the mind-blowing way they shape our entire society as described in Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Can Mean So Much, the way we’ve possibly stumbled on a solution in Jane McGonigal’s Reality is Broken, and most recently McKeown’s Essentialism has been tying things together.

That’s what’s been having my mind swimming, as I sketch out the ideas in the books in my notebooks. There are so many connections. Take the idea of trade-offs, for example: Scarcity talks about how “slack” eliminates the need to choose; Reality is Broken talks about how gaming makes you more capable and less stressed about choosing; then Essentialism reminds you that tradeoffs are inevitable, and successful people don’t avoid that, they leverage it.

Oh, yeah, and then there’s the whole KonMari thing that creates slack in your life by making a game out of figuring out what is actually essential…

But as my house has been getting closer and closer to it’s essential state, I find myself wanting to apply the same process to my internal life. To KonMari my brain, so to speak. But how does one do that?

The start, I believe, is to figure out what the priority is. Money? Success? Fame? Security? Sex? YouTube fame? Happiness? Knowledge? It can’t be everything; it needs to be one thing, and trusting that if you choose the right thing then everything that follows will also be good.

Once the priority is set, then it’s just a matter of building the box to put it in – and that’s where the years of writing this blog come in handy. Tweak the morning routine? No problem! Change that habit? Piece of cake, done it hundreds of times. I’ve got asanas and mantras and credos and principles and even a law or two that are just waiting to be used to create this structure of living, this Grand Unified Theory of…Me.

I hesitated with that last word, and it still feels a little selfish, but rationally, how could you come up with a Grand Unified Theory of Anything Else? Einstein couldn’t do it for fields, parents can’t do it for kids until it’s far too late to do any good, and evidence has shown that even in something as intensely studied as finance you can do as well using a dartboard to manage your portfolio as an MBA.

So yeah, if I’m going to have any luck using all of these tools to shape this raw material into a unified theory of anything, it’s gonna have to start with myself.

How About That Priority?

It will probably come as no surprise to the readers of this blog, considering the day that this post is written, that when thinking about what the priority is, the only word that makes sense is Love. Not in any simple, puerile way (and believe me, I’ve gone that route!) but in big Buscaglia-Moore-Huber sized chunks. Every single time I’ve changed something about to increase my loving connection with someone else – partner, child, sibling, grandchild, parent, friend – it has rewarded me far more than anything else.

But those have been small steps. In the KonMari sense of the term, I’ve been tidying up bit by bit, but things always get messy again; I feel as though I’ve been wandering around a workshop, using tools to fix and tune up various things, but now I’m wanting to roll up my sleeves and build something. No, I’m not talking about things like relationships or families or Great Masterpieces; I’ve done all that (well, maybe not the third, but two out of three).

This will be much harder. But every bit as worthwhile.

“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

― Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, The Little Prince

 

The Myth of Priorities

Today I met with my MasterMind group partner, and we started out our meeting by holding each other accountable for what we’d said we’d do the previous week.

“Did you announce your Defining Moment Webinar class?” she asked.

“Yes, I did!” I said, and sent her the link. You can see for yourself; I’m pretty excited about it, and if you think it’s interesting, feel free to register (here endeth the oh-so-subtle plug). I checked my notes from last week, and turned the tables on her.

“You were going to consolidate all of your to-do lists into One List,” I said. “Did you?”

“I did!” she exclaimed triumphantly (see, that’s what’s so great about Mastermind Groups). “I’ve got about seventeen things I want to do right now,” she continued, “and eleven things that are…well, I can do them later.”

I laughed – not at her, of course, but with her, because I’m the same way. My backburner’s backburners have backburners, and there’s never not a project I could be working on.

One of the favorite verbs of the Productivity People is “prioritize”. We hear it as parental advice, too: “That boy needs to get his priorities straight!” The problem with that kind of counsel, though, is that it’s about as meaningful as saying “That boy needs to find himself a unicorn!”

There Can Be Only One

In his book Essentialism David McKeown talks about how surprised he was when he looked up the lexicon of “priority”. The word was coined in the 14oo’s, it seems, but with one major difference from today: it was singular. That is, there was no plural form, because after all, it meant “that which is first.” There can’t be more than one thing with that ranking. Picture the Olympics: “The Gold Medal goes to…Ukraine! And the…other Gold medal…um…”

But in the 1900’s, as McKeown put it, industries tried to “bend reality” by deciding there were priorities – as if more than one thing could be “the most important”. In fact, what they did by pluralizing the word was take away it’s meaning – or, I will reluctantly admit, expand its meaning, much in the same annoying way that “literally” now also means “figuratively”. Instead of something being “the priority” – the most important thing – it could be “a priority” – one of several important things.

But by doing that, they irrevocably made the word less meaningful. “Make this the priority!” is not unclear as to what should come first. “Make this a priority” leaves a few choices open to debate or consideration. It dilutes the impact, and, I feel, the purpose of the word.

Why do I bring this up? Because of the squirrels, man, all the verdammt squirrels that keep on jumping into life and trying to become the priority. I think they sometimes wear little t-shirts that say “I’m a priority, too!” that make us want to make room in life for them.

The t-shirts are a lie, my friend. You can have multiple priorities…but you can only have them one at a time. Anyone who tells you otherwise is trying to sell you something.

SQUIRRELS

 

Hey! Did you know we’re putting all these on a YouTube Channel now?

This Love.Life.Practice Weekend Roundup podcast also contains readings of the following posts:

This podcast was produced by Gray Miller Creative LLC.

This interview and podcast is made possible by support from my patrons. You can be as cool as them by becoming a Patron of Love Life Practice .Yes! I support LoveLifePractice!

If you like this podcast, would you please recommend it to your friends? Send them a link to iTunes or a link to the podcast feed – or tweet about it! 

Send feedback, questions, or suggestions for guests I might interview to gray@lovelifepractice.com.

 

 

New Episode of the Love Life Practice Weekend Roundup Podcast!

The post title isn’t accurate; KonMari could be considered to be a form of Essentialism. Certainly David McKeown, author of Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, is a fan. But having read an interview with him (after reading this article by Margaret Everton) I found that while yes, I have jumped on the Essentialist bandwagon, there is also a kind of Essentialist Cliff.

Unintended Side Effects

Let me explain how this KonMari technique has side effects: Natasha and I are almost done with our process. Really, only three categories remain: the grandsons’ toybox, the stuff under the bed, and the storage locker in the basement.

After that we’ll be done. Really, truly, literally done with applying this philosophy to every physical possession we own.

The results have been great. I started this process after a particular phrase in the book resonated: unhurried spaciousness. While we live in a small apartment (relative to most of our peers) there is a feeling of open focus, a relaxation of the noise and a lessening of the micro-aggravation of clutter. I don’t worry about tripping over my shoes, and going into my closet is a pleasure instead of a reminder of where I stash all the stuff when I want the place to look tidy.

In fact, it’s such a pleasure that I’m reluctant to tackle those last three areas. Like a book with characters that you love so much that you read it more slowly to prolong the pleasure of their company, a part of me wonders: what do I do when I’m done? What will life look like when there’s not always that “y’know, someday I need to go through that drawer…” hovering in the back of my brain?

Natasha has solved that problem: she’s already made plans with a friend of ours to “KonMari” the kitchen. It’s also funny how “KonMari” has become a verb meaning “ruthlessly discard.” I threw away a malfunctioning-but-pretty charging cable with a triumphant shout of “KON-MARI’D!” while on a road trip. So there are ways that the philosophy will stay in our lives to some extent.

Essentialism vs. Minimalism

At the same time there is a need for restraint. For example, in her book Marie Kondo recommends taking everything out of the shower – even the soap – and putting it in a cabinet so that you can take it out when you need it. She brings up the issues of hygiene (seriously, is it any fun to clean a soap dish? Especially when you put the soap back and it’s instantly dirty again?) but really I think it’s just a level of enjoying taking things out from where they belong and putting them back again – perhaps another way to prolong the joy of tidying up.

I wanted to do that when we KonMari’d the bathroom. Natasha, wisely, suggested that it would get annoying to take things out and put them back every time – and it wasn’t like we had a lot of unmanageable bottles and such anyway.

That was when I realized that I’d crossed a line, where I was KonMari-ing for KonMari’s sake, rather than because it made my life more effective. In fact, it wasn’t even productive – I was creating busy work for myself, much like Gollum pulling out the One Ring and muttering “Oh, precious, yessssss, spark of joyyyy, yesssss…

Which brings us to the way Essentialism is different than Minimalism and certainly different than Productivity. To quote Mr. McKeown, “It’s not just less—it’s less, but better.” It’s not about having only five shirts – it’s about having the seven shirts that each means something to you that is exquisite. Margaret Everton touches on it as well:

As we follow those internal pulls and sometimes irrational desires, the superfluity disappears and leaves us each with our own messy and eccentric authenticity…Our personal relationship to items gives them significance, an essence that goes beyond their physical properties.

Which brings you to the question: how much significance do you want to give your items? Really, things only have as much existence as you give them; I happen to be using this collection of connected wood pieces to write, so it becomes a “desk” – but if it were covered with plants, it might be a garden, and if it were in the woods, it would likely be an aviary (come to think of it, our cat doesn’t think it’s a desk at all; it’s “resting place number three”).

One thing that Essentialism encourages is for you to look at not just what things mean to you – but what you let them mean to you. For example, do you fall into that group of people who, when they lose their phone, act as though they’ve just been through a breakup? There’s even a beautifully onomatopoetic name for it: nomophobia.

The Scariest Lifehack I’ve Ever Read

Even Spider Games are Less Scary.

Even Spider Games are Less Scary.

Which brings me to why I’m frightened to listen to David McKeown’s book (available on ScribD, as it turns out). The interviewer asked “How can adults learn to play more?” That’s a question I’ve been working on for a while, especially while listening to Jane McGonigal’s Reality is Broken book and realizing that I don’t play nearly enough. I would expect to hear some recommendations for games, or maybe some kind of triggering habit change hack. No, instead Mr. McKeown just said five words of terror:

Take email off your phone.

He and the interviewer have a good chuckle about how that suggestions leaves a pit in the stomach and an instant litany of reasons why that’s fine for some people but entirely out of the question for me. He doesn’t spend a lot of time rebutting, but he makes the telling point that if email access actually made us more productive, we wouldn’t keep saying you should turn it off when you want to actually get things done.

I’m tempted to try it, if just for a week. Not having no email at all, just not having it on my phone. Even as I type it, my muscle memory has the urge to reach out and check the little black mirror sitting on my desk. Of course, I could do it with some cheats – leaving things like twitter and instagram on there, or a page in my mobile browser open to my email account. But just as KonMari requires you to be ruthless, this kind of Attention Essentialism would require both the physical act of removing apps as well as the mental discipline of saying “no” to checking mail on my phone at all.

Honestly? I’m really writing this post because it’s not that I don’t want to try it – but because I don’t want to try it alone.

Anyone else with me? Starting tomorrow, going until next Monday, no email on the phone. Let me know in the comments, and I’ll see you on the other side!

Pruning the Loveless

I promised a while back that I wasn’t going to keep harping on about the whole Do what you love philosophy, and I’m not – really. I confess, though, I still like reading about it. A lot! Everytime I come across some article about “following your passion” – whether in favor of it or against it – I devour it, whether with an eagerly nodding head or a skeptical tsk-tsk, they’ll learn attitude.

That’s why I don’t write about it any more; nobody wants to hear some pedantic nitwit talking about that kind of stuff.

I say this just to reassure you: this is NOT going to be another one of Those Posts. Also, I owe you an apology; at some point I failed to actually record the URL of the article that contained the technique that I’m about to discuss. So I can’t forward you on to the article, but I guess that’s ok, because if I did that I might seem like I was urging people to follow their passion.

And I said I wouldn’t do that.

Don’t Let In What You Don’t Love

The article was talking about how difficult it can be to figure out what it is you love, because you can love different things at different times, and what does “love” mean, anyway? How do you know that what you love is going to love you back?

The idea of trying out things until you figure out what you love is not very efficient. Just go with the numbers – the time required to think of something, try it out for a while, evaluate it – it just kind of seems ridiculous, given the number of things you could do. That’s the price of civilization and a more mobile class structure; in the good old days a person knew their place, after all, and were likely born into their occupation as well. None of this “multipotentiality” stuff!

Instead, the author (and believe me, it’s killing me that I didn’t bookmark this article!) suggested that instead, we simply choose to only do the things that we want to do. That bring us joy. Now, before you go into a whole list of reasons why that’s not practical, let me just acknowledge that as a discussion that is truly interesting and worthwhile and can we please have it another time? Preferably with some cigars and whiskey and maybe some classic jazz vocalists in the background?

Because that’s not where my mind went when I read the article. No, he said the word “joy” and my mind instantly shifted into “KonMari” mode, because the phrase “spark of joy” has become the mantra for at least a week here at the Dance of Smoke and Ash (what Natasha and I fondly call our apartment). We’re almost done with Marie Kondo’s methodology, and everything we touch is rated on the “spark of joy” scale. Does it give it to us? Or not?

As it turns out, this becomes a good way to keep from acquiring more clutter, as well, which I found out as I put my “love powers” to work at a thrift shop. Natasha and I were there looking for a couple things – a small table to put next to my writing chair, and possibly some tapers for candles we were keeping.

Now, as GoT fans, we could probably get behind these...

Now, as GoT fans, we could probably get behind these…

No luck on the table, but she did find some small glass star-shaped tapers. My first reaction was relief – something we needed had been acquired! The more I looked at them, though, the less happy I felt. The star-shapes had a kind of ’70’s teenage-girl’s-room feeling to them, and it just didn’t match with the feeling that I wanted to create with the planned candlelit dinners. That’s when it hit me: I didn’t love them. They didn’t bring me a “spark of joy” – nor did Natasha seem terribly attached (I freely admit that there are things that I have no attachment to but that bring a happy smile to her face. Call it the Commutative Spark Principle).

So why would I let it into my life? This was what that article was talking about: don’t let things in that you don’t love.

We put the tapers back for someone else to love. We can wait a while, until we find something else we actually love.

Drama vs. Theatrics

masks-807346_640(S)He causes so much drama… – Anonymous

It’s a common enough saying, usually with negative connotations. As I mentioned in a recent post I’ve never been a big fan of it, mainly because what seems to be “drama” for one person is “life” for another. In my post I make the same error, valuing one kind as “gratuitous” and the other as “plot-driven”. The flaw in that is the good old “who am I to judge?” There’s a lot of terms for people who sit on the outside and make judgements about what the “man in the arena” should be doing – at best they’re coaches, but it goes downhill from there, and I’m pretty sure “personal development blogger” isn’t too far from “armchair quarterback.”

James Carse, in his book on Finite and Infinite Games, thoroughly explores games in which the objective is to keep playing (“infinite game”) as opposed to games where the objective is to “win” and thereby stop playing (“finite games”). While he does use examples like football and politics, it’s all a not-so-thinly disguised metaphor for life in general. While I’m finding the book itself complex and thought-provoking, this chapter especially resonated:

…we shall refer to finite play as theatrical.
Although script and plot do not seem to be written in advance, we are always able to look back at the path followed to victory and say of the winners that they certainly knew how to act and what to say.
Inasmuch as infinite players avoid any outcome whatsoever, keeping the future open, making all scripts useless, we shall refer to infinite play as dramatic.
Dramatically, one chooses to be a mother; theatrically, one takes on the role of mother…

I can’t even begin to take that idea deeper – reading Carse is only possible after I’ve warmed up with some McGonigal – I do find that using that terminology feels a bit more apt. Rather than calling someone dramatic…perhaps what they are is more theatrical? Suddenly the actions and motivations are, if not more forgivable, at least more comprehensible. Drama is the telling of story, of deep motivations and emotions; theatricality, on the other hand, is the act of seeking attention, the desire to impress, to entertain, and (of course) to gain applause.

“Don’t be so dramatic!” vs. “Don’t be so theatrical!” – one dismisses the issue, while the other takes notice of behavior while still leaving room for the issue to be addressed. Or, to take it out of the other – “I don’t want to cause drama!” (so I’m just going to keep quiet) vs. “I don’t want to be theatrical!” (so I’m going to speak calmly and rationally about the things I care about).

Try it out, the next time you see “drama” unfolding. How much of it is theatrics? And how much is just life?

Speaking of theatrical, thanks to my Patrons, I’ve now begun putting the posts on a YouTube Channel!

The Infinite Practice

Education discovers an increasing richness in the past, because it sees what is unfinished there. Training regards the past as finished and the future as to be finished. Education leads toward a continuing self-discovery; training leads toward a final self-definition.

– James P. Carse, Finite and Infinite Games

imageThere are times when I feel a bit like a dog sitting at the foot of the Tree of Enlightenment, with all kinds of Personal-Development Squirrels flitting around the branches. “Ooh! Scarcity! Wait! Game theory! 7 Jars – I gotta have 7 Jars! Oh, wow! Konmari is cool!” It may even seem that way when I write and change the subject from post to post. One way to look at it is to think that I’m sort of like blogging tofu; I take the flavor of whatever teacher or lesson I’m currently marinating in. It’s not the most flattering idea – it implies a kind of superficiality, a shallowness and unwillingness to delve deeper into subjects (though I have taken requests from patrons for certain subjects).

There’s another way to look at it, though.

There is No Practice

I hate the term “grown up”, but not for the reasons that some might think (I once had a girlfriend give me a picture of Peter Pan because she thought it an apt role model). I think of it this way: if you fill up a glass, you can’t fill it any more. If you use up a Kleenex, you can’t use it any more. So if you grow up…you see where I’m going?

Instead I like the idea of being an adult. Of never stopping the process of growth, and allowing the new things that I learn change my understanding of my past and the directions the future may take. To me, being an adult is all the playfulness of being a child combined with an understanding of consequences and personal responsibility – which allows you to not only make choices, but to make informed choices.

All of the self-help and personal development theory is simply trying on new sets of lens through which to look at life. None of it is life itself; it’s just ways that make life better (or worse) by your own choice. As Bernard Suits puts it, “…playing a game is a voluntary attempt to overcome unnecessary obstacles.” This may be for a finite goal – I want to win – or an infinite goal – I want to be better. Every lifehack I try, every new book or theory or discussion I explore, it’s not because I’m trying to find the solution – it’s part of enjoying the process.

Which is why the particular part of this blog labeled “Practice” might be a bit of a misdirection. Because you can’t really “practice” life, at least not in the way you practice football or rehearse dances or study for tests. There is no “life practice” in the sense of “getting ready for the real thing”. You’re already in it; you’re already playing. As T. Harv Eker (and others) have put it: “How you do anything is how you do everything.”

So…how you doin’?

This Love.Life.Practice Weekend Roundup podcast also contains readings of the following posts:

This podcast was produced by Gray Miller Creative LLC.

This interview and podcast is made possible by support from my patrons. You can be as cool as them by becoming a Patron of Love Life Practice .Yes! I support LoveLifePractice!

If you like this podcast, would you please recommend it to your friends? Send them a link to iTunes or a link to the podcast feed – or tweet about it! 

Send feedback, questions, or suggestions for guests I might interview to gray@lovelifepractice.com.

 

 

New Episode of the Love Life Practice Weekend Roundup Podcast!

Loving Things

Ultimate Kami

Ultimate Kami

Thank you, bear! Good job!

– me to Natasha’s stuffed bear
just before sending it off to the grandsons.

One of the stranger parts of the KonMari method probably hearkens back to Ms. Kondo’s background in the Shinto religion. I’m not going to try and summarize an entire belief system in a blog post (we have wikipedia for that) but one aspect of it is the idea of kami:

kami refers to the divinity, or sacred essence, that manifests in multiple forms: rocks, trees, rivers, animals, places…Kami and people are not separate; they exist within the same world and share its interrelated complexity. – Wikipedia

The KonMari method doesn’t actually talk about kami, or shinto, but there is a strong suggestion of anthropomorphizing your belongings. You might think that this would make it harder to part with this, but instead it turns into a more complete interaction: instead of getting something for a purpose, using it, and then keeping it around “just in case”, you can say “thank you” and send it on to serve that purpose somewhere else. If you need your teeth cleaned, for example, you go to the dentist, you get them cleaned, and then you don’t say “Hey, I might need my teeth cleaned again – can you just come home with me and hang around in the back of my closet?” The tendency to hang on to things makes much less sense if you think of them as personalities with purpose.

Reducing Technology Stress

Thinking of it as a personality also helps out in other kinds of stress-inducing situations, such as when tech goes wrong. For example, to prepare for a camping trip this weekend we took the car into the mechanic to get some minor repairs done. While it was there, Natasha made a comment about how BunBun (our car’s name) was “…in the hospital.”

Good anthropomorphizing! But “hospital” sounded kind of dire, so I made an adjustment: “No, BunBun is in the day spa, so she’s fresh and ready for the trip!”

One of the most useful paradigm shifts you can make about troubleshooting any kind of tech is to remember: Technology wants to work. Whatever it is – your computer, your blender, your door – it was designed to do a thing. It wants to do it! Too often we act like our technology is out to get us (c’mon, raise your hand if you’ve yelled “Why are you doing this to me?” at something that wasn’t working) when what’s actually happening is the technology is asking for help. Unlike you, most tech is pretty limited in scope and purpose; can you imagine how frustrating it would be to only be able to do one thing and then have that thing taken away?

It’s All in Your Head…Just Like Everything Else

For those who scoff at this being “unrealistic”, I will just remind you that everything you see is “unrealistic” – reality is far too complex for our brains to handle. Instead we filter the information to figure out what is important, and what we want to see. I’m not suggesting that you “believe” anything, but rather that you “act as if” the things around you have personalities (perhaps watching Disney’s Beauty and the Beast might help).

Why? Because if you are putting out loving expressions not just to people (cuz you’re already doing that, right?) but also to the things around you, and creating imaginary dialogues where the things are loving you back…well, that’s a whole lotta love in your day.

Sounds like a pretty nice place to be, whether you’re cluttered or not. Why not give it a try?

 

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