This Week’s BIG Idea
“Does a full hard drive weigh more than an empty one?” That was one of my Google searches a few years ago. For some reason, I could have sworn that a full drive weighed more than an empty one. But alas, there’s no difference in weight between a full hard drive and one with nothing on it. Even if I know the real answer, I disagree. Every computer I’ve ever owned has had its main hard drive full of unimportant files. I’ve kept poorly curated collections of games, music, movies, and more. While those digital files don’t weigh anything in the physical world, they take up space in a much more important world: my mind. This is why I decided to implement some of the concepts of digital minimalism and deleted my entire music collection.
The problem with my music collection is that it wasn’t a collection, but an excuse for hoarding files. There was no curation involved and once I downloaded something, it stayed there for years. As a consequence, I ended up with several albums I never listened to and just took up space. So I hit the delete button and got rid of 164 GB worth of music. Interestingly, it felt great. Like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. Now I have one less thing to worry about and more space on my computer. Ever since I deleted my music collection, I can’t stop thinking about getting rid of other files.
These are some of the things I’d like to work on when it comes to digital minimalism:
- Curate my movie and anime collections
- Organize the digital books on my Kindle
- Organize my photos
- Use my phone less
- Simplify my inboxes
- Have a backup of the most important files in Google Drive
- Streamline my web browser
- Disconnect from the internet more often
What I’m Working on
As simple as it sounds, one of the things I’ve been trying to implement lately is thinking about the action I can take that will have the most positive impact on my life. By using this simple filter, I can think about what I’m about to do and easily determine if it’s worth doing or not. I’ve found that less is more and I can usually make a positive impact by substracting rather than adding something (this is related to the idea of digital minimalism discussed above). By thinking about this I can remove myself from things I don’t want to engage with. One of the best parts about filters like this is their simplicity.
What I’m Listening to
Some of the recent podcast episodes from The Tim Ferriss Show have wonderful guests, including Todd McFarlane, Steven Pressfield, and Marc Manson. The one I want to listen to the most is the episode where Ferriss interviews James Clear, author of one of my favorite nonfiction books of the past few years Atomic Habits. For those unfamiliar, Atomic Habits is about creating a system that teaches you to build good habits and get rid of bad ones. I’m really looking forward to listening to this one.
What I’m Reading
- Food Rules by Micahel Pollan: In this extremely short book, Michael Pollan sets out to do one thing, make our decisions about food as simple as possible. Food Rules is a handbook I’m going to be referring to often because the book packs all of that wisdom in the form of sixty-four lessons that are clear and memorable. So if you’re interested in some guidelines for eating, you won’t find a better book than Food Rules.
What I’m Watching
Some of my favorite videos to watch are about productivity and desk setups. I enjoy learning about how other people work. This short video, by Maurice Moves, details the contents of a single bag he takes everywhere he goes. What I like the most about this video is how he’s able to work remotely with the contents he takes in a single bag. He divides the contents into four: clothing, tech, hygiene, and support. Everything in the bad is optimized for comfort and as the title of the video says there are no sacrifices.
This Week’s Quote
Let us postpone nothing. Let us balance life’s account every day… One who daily puts the finishing touches to his life is never in want of time.”Seneca, Moral letters to Lucilius
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