7 things I’m ditching post-vacation

“Yeah, if you could just do all this meaningless stuff and pretend it’s important you’d really be helping us out, m’kay…?”

There are many incredible benefits of getting out of your home country once in a while! Aside from having a fantastic vacation/adventure in Southeast Asia, I got recently got a fresh perspective on the trappings of life/work/country upon returning yesterday. Here are some things I’ve decided not to put up with anymore as a result:

  1. Subscriptions
    Getting back to my overflowing inbox and sorting by the FROM field for 2.5 weeks of backlog taught me that I don’t actually need any regular notifications from anybody about anything. Not a blog, not a digital newsletter, not a free training, not a coupon, nada nuthin’! I don’t have any physical subscriptions or I’d ditch those too.
  2. Unwanted Mail & Phonecalls
    I changed my business and my personal addresses earlier this year, so now I get all sorts of junkmail and sales calls. I almost forgot how much I missed them, but now I remember (sigh!). Time to get off everyone’s lists again. How ever will I contain my joy…?
  3. Email Insta-responses & Soliloquies
    As of today, I check email 3x daily for a maximum of 1hr/day. This may be a bit tricky with some clients, but it’s the personal habit shift that’s hard. Yes, I’ve done this kind of thing before. Simply don’t check email without a timer ticking away and you’ll learn a lot about yourself very quickly. Also, all my outgoing emails are now restricted to a 5-sentence limit. Anecdotal evidence shows that few people read — even fewer take the time to understand — any email longer than that. After sifting through the thousands of emails in my backlog, I can kinda see why…
  4. Social Media Blabber
    All my activity on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, etc. is now drawing from the same 1hr max as email. I’m making exceptions for blog and YouTube activity only. I love my friends around the world, and staying connected via social has been great. Connecting directly is simply better in every way, be it via phone or Skype or, best yet, in person.
  5. News from US Sources
    All American news is crap — even PBS/NPR. I kinda knew this already, but being overseas really hammered it home. I have no reason to consume our so-called news anymore, and plenty of reason to avoid it. It all looks more like PR masquerading as news to me, or pure editorial, and I feel less powerful and more fearful as a result of plugging into it. I’d rather be straight up uninformed by choice than misinformed and deluded about it. The truth is that all the stuff that I care about tends to find me by word of mouth or sites like this, anyway. If I feel the urge to research something, foreign news sources are alright, though direct source material is always preferred over any aggregations of it. Thank you internet!
  6. Juggling Finances
    I nearly succeeded in putting my bills on automatic pilot before this trip. Now is the time to finish the job, and map it out on the calendar (including a review day and failsafes). Billing everything on credit cards gives a bit of buffer, which I do anyway for the airline points (that’s how I got to Southeast Asia, after all). Last year I paid off all my debt, so now I might was well review everything only once a month and ignore it all until then. Less stress, less mess.
  7. Apple Products
    I had one of the first iPods, iPhones, iPads, and was even one of the first iOS developers. At one time I dearly loved my iTunes, my MacBook Pro, my OS X, my Mail, my Final Cut Pro, and the simple sense of all Apple designs. But going away and coming back reminded me that these once precious things just piss me off at every turn these days. Seth Godin has a great post that I think sums up why this happens. Anyway, I’m jumping ship. I don’t know where I’m jumping yet, but I’m jumping within the next 4–6 weeks for sure. Sadly, I don’t like them Apples no mo’…

Anything here inspire/trigger you? New thoughts to add? I’d love to hear from you! This was my first Medium post. Hey, thanks for reading it.

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