Throwing stuff away.
I’m a pack rat and I bet you are too. You might not be a pack rack in a typical sense, but I’m sure there is something you hate wasting or throwing away. It’s doesn’t always have to be physical, it could be mental. Thoughts, ideas and feelings that you don’t want to let go of.
Like getting a six pack or just getting back in physical shape. It could be the idea of eating better and making some adjustment to life style.
It could be that book idea, website idea, product or life goal that just won’t die.
I have this terrible habit of keeping old technology around. I have this stack of DVD’s and CD-R’s. Xbox games, family videos, music cds and burned movies (legal back ups of course). Holy crap, there’s a ps2 game in there. The last time I had a working Playstation was in 2011 before it got the yellow light of death. It was the original PS3.
I’m going to psychoanalyze myself and suggest that I don’t want to let go of the past – literally. Stuff, things and junk that I don’t want to trash. I want to keep it, I think because I may need it later. Oddly, what always seems to happen is that when I do need that thing I didn’t want to throw away, I can’t find it and I end up buying a new one instead.
Too many choices and too many options is what holds me back.
This was best described in the book, Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely.
In Chapter 8, he talks about keeping doors open. Here’s a quote from the book:
“How many times have bought something on sale not because we really needed but because by the end of the sale all those items would be gone and we could never have it at that price again.”
My view is that if I keep something instead of throwing it away, I give myself the option to have it available for later use to potentially save money and/or time. This is rarely the case. But, there’s a flaw in my thinking that makes it so.
This is why having a job keeps life simple. You work towards the goal of an organization. In turn, the goals of the organization become yours. If you own a business or work in a business within a business (like me), the goals of your clients become your goals.
This is why we need work and passion projects – they almost always require other people. The people we care about in our life keeps us focused on what’s important. Without these people, life would have little meaning.
Throwing stuff away, not letting go, staying focused, keeping options open and setting goals – yeah I’m pretty much all over the place. So what’s the moral of this blog post? If your goals are important enough (fitness, business, life), you’ll clear the clutter, throw stuff away, eliminate options and stay focused on your goals.