Saturday, 31 July 2010

The way of the minimalist: throw away what doesn't work and focus on the essentials

A new fashion is sweeping the world. It is reshaping the work of generations and throwing a new light on old certainties. If it gets you, it won't let you go untouched. This agent of change is the idea that you can achieve more with less effort, stress, and resources.

"Men can perish out of excessive endeavours to preserve what has little value," wrote the Chinese philosopher Lao-Tzu twenty-six centuries ago. In our days, it seems that many are indeed willing to waste their lives helping people who refuse to be helped and correcting the same mistake repeatedly instead of eliminating its cause once and for all.

"Major trouble results from complicating simple problems," observed Lao-Tzu. "A wise man prefers to solve problems when they are small, so that they have no chance to grow." Minimalism and disengagement are rational responses to excessive demands on our time, energy, or resources. Welcoming more trouble than you can handle is not a policy conductive to happiness.

When a borrowed weight becomes too heavy to carry, consider returning it to its legitimate owner. If you are working without measure on matters that consume all your time, reassess their importance and reduce them to proper size. Disengage and do less. Discard and minimize.


[Image by StressedTechnician under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under]

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.