American men have a half-hour more leisure time than women, and they mostly spend it watching TV. www.theatlantic.com
People are intentionally getting up early to get a slow start to the day. “Some people meditate, plunge into cold water, slowly jump on trampolines or have no plan at all except for avoiding a rush.” [Ellen Byron] www.ws
I’m kind of doing something like that this year. I deal at work with people across the US and in the UK. I’m literally the only person on my team in the Pacific Time Zone. That means if I get to my desk at a reasonable hour, I’m already hours and hours behind. I’m working on getting an earlier start so I don’t feel like I’m already behind as soon as I walk in.
And on my days off, well, it feels like if I get up late then I have no day at all, and I’m spending all night sitting on the couch watching TV and online.
You can get more exercise and get healthier by training yourself to think about exercise as something you enjoy.
This sounds like hippie bullshit but it works. I stumbled on it (so to speak!). I used to hate exercise; somewhere along the past 10 years — after I started my exercise program — I began to enjoy it.
If we get a few packages, great, I get to go up and down the stairs a few times! Hotel’s three-quarters of a mile from the convention center? Great, I get to have a nice walk twice a day!
Indeed, a couple of months ago I decided I was spending too much time exercising, and gave myself permission to skip the after-dinner walk, and also skip my daytime walk up to 2-3 times a week. I have stopped walking after dinner entirely. But I’ve only skipped the daytime walk two or three times in that time. And I think every one of those times I skipped was because it was either raining cold and hard, or I was recovering from a bad cold, or both. I seem to really like that daily walk, and find the time to do it no matter how busy I am otherwise. This would have been alien to me 10+ years ago.
A 39-year-old widow and mother of three young children describes her difficulties getting into online dating. I didn’t get choked up until the last few paragraphs because I am a tough guy.
Meet the Hydro-Haters: The People Who Refuse to Drink Water, No Matter What: I neither like nor dislike water. When I’m thirsty, I drink some water. When I’m not thirsty, I don’t. I generally like to have coffee or tea to sip when I’m working at my desk, and often when I’m just sitting around the house reading or watching TV. (MEL Magazine)
James Altucher describes how minimalism brought him “freedom and joy.” On Boing Boing:
I have one bag of clothes, one backpack with a computer, iPad, and phone. I have zero other possessions.
Today I have no address. At this exact moment I am sitting in a restaurant and there’s no place for me to go to lie down.
By tonight I will find a place to lie down. Will that be my address? Probably not.
Am I minimalist? I don’t know. I don’t care. I don’t like that word. I live the way I like to live no matter what label it has.
At any moment, you are exactly where you want to be, for better or worse.
A lot of people get minimalism confused.
It’s not necessarily a good way to live. Or a free way to live for many people. It’s just the way I like to live.
Altucher is a hedge fund manager. Presumably one of the possessions he carries in that one bag is a financial instrument that will allow him to bed down for the night in any of the most luxurious hotels in the world. I was going to speculate he has an American Express Black Card. But he says he has no credit cards. Still, lots of money is required to make the minimalist lifestyle comfortable.
If he wasn’t rich, he’d just be homeless.
But I’m not trying to be dismissive. There’s something appealing about Altucher’s lifestyle. And it’s always worthwhile to be conscious of which of our possessions enrich our lives, and which are just anchors weighing us down.
I’m headed home after 10 days on the road, which is I think the longest I’ve been away in 10 years since my father passed. I spent four days in Chicago for Light Reading’s Big Telecom Event. Then I spent another day in Chicago for staff meetings. Then Julie joined me for five five days in Columbus and Athens, Ohio, visiting her family, whom we hadn’t seen for three years. And now I’m on a plane back home.
It was an eventful trip. The conference was a success, with much good insight and connecting with peers. I’ll post links here later to the articles I wrote from the conference. I got to meet a few colleagues face-to-face whom I haven’t met before. We’re a very 21st-Century organization, with about 50 employees spread across the US, Canada, and in Britain. My boss is based in a suburb of London, eight hours ahead of me.
After work, we went to dinner. I did karaoke for the first time ever in my life. Rumor has it there is video. I think its safe to say that as a singer I am very enthusiastic.
I ate and ate and ate this trip. I have a bet with myself how much weight I gained over the 10 days. I’m thinking 12 pounds. I am not disciplined controlling eating while I’m traveling. That wasn’t a big deal during most of my weight loss and maintenance, when I was traveling just a couple of times a year. Now that I’m on the road for about 20-25% of the time, it’s becoming a problem. I need to work on it.
Still, I enjoyed every bite. Such a lot of good food.
I’ve become an enthusiast for nondescript hole-in-the-wall places that serve great food. I found a beaut in Columbus: Pho Asian Noodle House and Grill on West Lane Avenue. It’s a Pan-Asian place, which is a highfalultin way of saying the menu has Chinese food and Japanese food and Thai and Vietnamese and maybe other ethnicities I couldn’t identify. I had the kung pao chicken with fried rice, which is a safe choice, and it was delicious. The restaurant is obviously in a converted Taco Bell, with minimal redecoration, which adds to its charm.
Another big highlight of this trip is going to meet our financial planner in Marion, Ohio, about 75 minute out of Columbus. Until now, I’ve left financial planning to Julie. I make the money, she manages it. But this is a bad idea, and so I’m getting up to speed myself. I am impressed by how on top of things both Ron and Julie are. Ron seems very competent — and I liked him personally too.