Today I began my initial step in becoming a minimalist. I gathered all of my clothes I have accumulated for the past 30 years and stashed them in four large black trash bags. I drove to the Rolling Hills ministry. They donate clothing for disaster relief. I drive and drive. I wonder if I will ever arrive. Then it appears. A nondescript building with a sign saying Thrift store. I wasn’t sure where to direct my vehicle with all of the trash bags. I take note of a sign on the side of the building. The talking sign says business drop off. I was about to drop off 30 years of business.
One of my rituals to run as we enter a new year is to deconstruct the past 12 months to raise awareness so I can repeat [and refine] what worked and remove what didn’t.
#1. Epigenetics. Your environment greatly influences your mindset, joy in your life and your ability to overcome obstacles. This has been proven with the reseearch done in epigenetics. Epigenetic research has shown your DNA cells change their form depending on your environment. The more positive your environment, the more positive the change. Choose your surroundings and peer group very well.
#2. Rational thinking and illogical fallacies. Last year I was duped by the Sunk Cost Fallacy. This lead me to discover the illogical fallacies in human thinking. Human beings are very irrational and illogical. The book 300 Illogical Fallacies describes these fallacies and how to avoid them.
#3. Say something. Speak and express your ideas. If someone says something you do not agree with, is a fallacy in logic, or you find offensive, it is imperative you speak up and say something. Say something. Say something. Say something. Each time you fail to speak up, you are giving away your power.
I work almost entirely from a coffee shop everyday. As a programmer, I can work from any coffee shop in the world that has an internet connection. I call it the Coffee Shop revolution. It has changed my lifestyle and the way I work and live. A programmer’s paradise. A utopia. A desirable community of near perfect qualities. Well, at least until recently.
When I work in one coffee shop for multiple weeks at a time, people begin to get curious about who I am, what I do, why am I able to work from a coffee shop everyday all the day. Like vultures they begin to circle around me. The Nosy Rosy. The Curious George. The Gotta Know Joe. They all have that urge that they just have to say something to you.
I have had people stick their face in my screen and say, “Hey man, what ya doin’?” One lady said she was thinking about buying a Mac Computer and wanted to know how much my Mac weighed. Before I could say anything, she had already grabbed my computer and started shaking it to see how much it weighed. Yeah, this really happened.
I went on vacation last weekend arriving by plane. My ultimate destination was still three hours away and was only obtainable in vehicle, so I decided to rent a car with GPS. I surmised it would be easy to drive with a navigation system. No maps. Asking for directions.
I’m in the car and hit the start button on the GPS. It appeared easy enough, I entered my destination, hit a few more buttons to select the route. All of sudden, the words “Shutting down…” appear on the screen? I panic. I plead with the box, “No, no shutdown, you have to tell me where I’m going, I’m totally lost without you.” I started the car again and it was back. Whew! I exasperated, that was close. I went through the same dribble, entered the destination address, and it started working. I was on my way.