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Zen Habits

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Zero Clutter

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  1. How To Breathe

    Your day is getting hectic, and you're tired, or anxious, or distracted, or full of doubt. You're a bit lost, feeling without direction. Take a breath. Turn the spotlight of your attention from all the worries of your day to your breath, as it comes in and then goes out.

  2. 7 Discipline Mastering Practices

    A craftsman masters his trade by repeated practice, with care and continual learning, with devotion to the purpose. It takes the same kinds of things to master the craft of discipline: Repeated practice Single-minded devotion to the purpose Continual learning Care I've been giving some thought to what it takes to master the craft of discipline, and have been following some practices that I've found extremely useful: Do the task even when I'm not in the mood.

  3. 7 Rules That Keep My Life Simple

    I enjoy creating a few simple rules to live by that take away some of the overwhelming decision making we need to make every day. Pre-think these decisions, formulate them into rules, and then just follow them, freeing your brain for more important decisions.

  4. An Education In The Majestic Sierra Nevada

    We set out for the Sierra Nevada as a family, all eight of us, excited but unsure what to expect from our first family camping trip in these mountains. I surveyed our two vehicles full of camping gear and food, and wondered at foolishly calling myself a minimalist sometimes.

  5. The Lies Your Mind Tells You To Prevent Life Changes

    The mind is a wonderful thing. It's also a complete liar that constantly tries to convince us not to take actions we know are good for us, and stops many great changes in our lives. Scumbag mind.

  6. How To Believe In Yourself

    There was a long time when the lack of belief in myself was a major factor in my life. I didn't pursue an ideal career, or start my own business, because I didn't think I could. I didn't stick to habits because I didn't really believe I had the discipline.

  7. Don’t Waste A Moment

    What wouldn't be worthy, in my opinion: watching crappy TV (a few really good shows during the month might be an exception), constantly being distracted, constantly reading the news and social media, being mean or selfish all the time, shopping, feeling unmotivated and doing nothing with that time, worrying, regretting.

  8. How To Find Your Life Purpose: An Unconventional Approach

    Let's say you're feeling unmotivated, unsure of yourself, aimless, can't find your passion, directionless, not clear on what your purpose in life is. You're in good company - most people are in the same boat. Now, there about a million things online telling you how to find your passion in life, and that's a good thing.

  9. How To Be Great

    Now consider how you can make a difference in the lives of others. Consider your current work, which perhaps already makes a difference - how can you refocus yourself on this work? Or consider creating a side project, and carving out the time for this.

  10. Making Yourself Work

    One of the biggest problems you need to solve if you work for yourself is how to make yourself do work. The best entrepreneurs have figured it out and just pound out the work they need to do. But many others put off their dream careers, or stay in jobs they like, because they're afraid to figure this out.

  11. Inhabit The Moment

    'We're so busy watching out for what's just ahead of us that we don't take time to enjoy where we are.' ~Bill Watterson We all go through our lives almost on autopilot, our minds generally elsewhere, occupied with other thoughts as we float through the real world like ghosts.

  12. Living The Simple Life

    'A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.' ~Henry David Thoreau For almost 9 years now, I've been learning to live a simple life. A life uncluttered by most of the things people fill their lives with, and left with space for what really matters.

  13. How To Be Prepared For Anything

    'Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present.' ~Marcus Aurelius There are various ways to prepare yourself for what might come your way, whether that's a tough work project, a crisis, the loss of a loved one, an argument with your partner, or the zombie apocalypse.

  14. Turn Toward The Problem

    Much of our lives is spent trying to ignore problems, not wanting to deal with them, procrastinating. Bills are pushed to the side to deal with later. People we have troubles with are avoided. Work we don't want to do is put off while we browse the Internet.

  15. The End Of The Day Philosophy

    I've learned these answers through repeated observation, but you can learn your own answers by asking the question before you do anything, making a hypothesis ("I won't regret this later") and then seeing if you're right by reviewing the results at the end of each day.

  16. The Painful Beauty Of Impermanence

    The cherry blossom falls after its short beautiful bloom. It floats gently down to earth. Its life is over, but the limitedness of its existence is one of the biggest reasons the blossom is so gorgeous. If we knew that the blossom would last forever, it wouldn't have the same poignant beauty, and we'd take it for granted.

  17. How To Change Other People

    If only we could get others to be more considerate, less annoying, more diligent, see our point of view ... How often have you wanted to change other people so they'd be better? Better spouses, kids, roommates, coworkers, employees?

  18. Pursuing Happiness When It’s Already Within You

    And this choice, to dedicate your time to helping others, relieving their suffering, making them happy ... this is the motivation you can use for doing great things, for building something useful, for creating and working and being a good parent. It's not about increasing your own happiness, but the happiness of others.

  19. The Quickstart Guide To A Decluttered Home

    One of my favorite habits that I've created since I changed my life 9 years ago is having a decluttered home. I now realize that I always disliked the clutter, but I put off thinking about it because it was unpleasant.

  20. Parental Zen: How To Keep Your Cool As A Parent

    What parent hasn't lost their temper when a kid misbehaves? A parent who hasn't lost his or her cool is a mythical creature, probably riding on a unicorn over a rainbow right now.

  21. Looking For Love

    A reader asked for advice for people who are looking for love, trying to meet people, dating. The "looking for love" part of life is definitely trying, and I have to admit I'm no dating expert. I got lucky with Eva, finding her relatively easily and somehow convincing her that I'm dateworthy.