“What are you doing up at 3am? Get some more sleep”, “Go on, have that last piece of cake. Live a Little!” they’’ll exclaim, unknowing that by giving up so much that is part of a good life now, you’re building towards a greater one later. One that truly makes you feel alive. Not one that is reliant on experiences and pleasures to really feel like you’re living.
From now on, then, resolve to live as a grown-up who is making progress, and make whatever you think best a law that you never set aside. And whenever you encounter anything that is difficult or pleasurable, or highly or lowly regarded, remember that the contest is now: you are at the Olympic Games, you cannot wait any longer…
But here’s the thing: they’re actually worse than mere theft. It’s more like being swindled by a con man. You’re willingly giving up your time and attention — and for what? For the false promise of some momentary pleasure? It’s worse than you think. The notifications and distractions play a role in dual systems in our brains:
You’ll see I wear only gray or blue suits. I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make. — Barack Obama
Here’s the solution: Consume only the things that are going to help you get where you want to be and leave the rest behind. The news, social media, and Netflix are all designed to distract you, rather than to help you live the life you want.