In the book, Fed Up: Emotional Labor, Women and The Way Forward, Gemma Hartley talks about Emotional Labor and Mental Load. One of the biggest things that has help me come to terms with all of the mental load that I carry is the practice of minimalism. For me, a lot of the tenets of Minimalism is refuting many of the societal norms that have been ingrained in our lives. My mantra some days is to make a decision that removes a thousand decisions after that. This has been crucial to ensure my sanity, but to also reduce the mental load I personally have to carry.Read More
Happiness is work.
Do you agree or disagree with that statement?
I had the chance to read and review the book The Happy Mind: A Simple Guide to Living a Happier Life Starting Today by Kevin Horsley and Louis Fourie. This book is about the dynamics of what constitute happiness and I think deep down we all know what these are, but may have forgotten these basic and simple rules in our busy lives and our distracted world.Read More
“Checking your “likes” is the new smoking.”
I couldn’t help the feeling that technology was taking over my life and it wasn’t for the best. Even after implementing a few digital minimalism strategies, I still coudn’t help the feeling that I wasn’t doing enough. I still felt distracted and not as focused. This past week, I finally picked up Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport and found so many interesting strategies in there to help find focus amidst the chaos of the digital attention economy.Read More
No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance. - Confucius
At the beginning of 2018, I made it a goal to read 52 books. That’s around 1 a week. I read some really good books that will change the way I think and act in the next few years. Here’s my entire list. Most are non-fiction as I tend to like those better, but I did try to include one or two fiction every few weeks. I have my top 3 recommendations for the following categories: Health, Personal Finance, Environment, Minimalism and Other Topics.Read More
"Men are forced to labour now because they are a slave to their own wants."
It took me some time to finish this book, but after several renewals from the library, I finally finished Empire of Things: How We Became a World of Consumers by Frank Trentmann. It's a fascinating read! It reads a little bit like a history textbook. It runs through a range of histories of multiple countries to see show how goods traveled from one place to another. It should be noted that consumption isn't a new idea, but it has rapidly grown thanks to the Industrial Age and post Second World War.Read More
I just finished the book "Your Money or Your Life" by Vicki Robin and Joe Dominquez. I love personal finance and am an avid personal finance book reader. Of all of the books I've read, this is one of the few books that talk about the relationship and impact of our spending on both our wallets and on our one planet. “Financial Integrity is achieved by learning the true impact of your earning and spending both on your family and on the planet.”Read More
What did you do when you learned the truth about eating animals?
This is going to be a tough post to write, but I am going to attempt to do so as I believe it will help me understand all of the views around eating meat and where I stand. It's not that I've been avoiding the topic. It's just that this is a complex topic and I have been trying to wrap my brain around it. You see, I don't have a problem eating meat. Growing up in the Philippines, I've seen animals get butchered for food. I've witnessed chickens and pigs being raised only to be killed for a special event, mostly for a fiesta celebration. When this happened, we would be eating parts of that animal for days on end.Read More
In our current system, the worker's life belong not only to the commodity he or she makes, but also increasingly to the garbage graveyard. When manufactured goods are trashed, so too is the labor that went into making them. What other productive, scientific, creative pursuits could we have invested in the time we were making cheap things? Garbage is not just nature, but human labor thrown away in the interest of the circulation of commodities and the extraction of profit.
I just finished reading Gone Tomorrow: The Hidden Life of Garbage and I can't help thinking about the above quote. It makes me sad. I'm also struggling to reconcile my Economics and Sustainability brain. As someone who studied Economics in undergrad, economic growth was paramount, but the only way to have economic growth was to produce more. On the other hand, my Sustainability brain is screaming, we can't keep producing more. We don't have enough resources and we are not even recycling resources properly.Read More
I've been struggling with the tenets of minimalism, zero waste and conscious capitalism for some time now. Not the practicalities of it, though I have my moments, but the idealism of it. We don't live in a perfect world. We don't live in a circular economy. The term "conscious capitalism" feels like an oxymoron. We live in a very capitalistic society that uses the GDP as the factor for measuring our economic growth. GDP means the creation and consumption of things. How can we be conscious about that and is that something that we can change?Read More
I've been doing a lot of mulling regarding over our ever connected world. A few months ago, when I reset my phone, I purposely did not install Facebook because I felt I was constantly checking it. Not in a productive way, but in a way that was there to pass the time. I installed Instagram though and found myself using that more often anyways. The constant pull of the latest updates, the stories, the need to post was getting to me.
I recently picked up Solitude: In Pursuit of a Singular Life in a Crowded World and can definitely relate to the author and I agree with many of his points. Partly for me, I've been struggling to find this balance of Minimalism and Mindfulness.Read More
Here are the final list books that I've read this year. Have you read any of these?Read More
Too many choices can actually paralyze us and lead to doubt, regret, lots of social comparison and unhappiness. How do we then overcome too many choices? Paradox of Choice offers some insight.Read More
Introduction to the energy of money and how your personal money history, beliefs and ideas affect you you earn money, save money and spend money.Read More
"Not giving a fuck does not mean being indifferent; it means being comfortable with being different."Read More
Further reading of The Zero Waste Solution provided more alternative solutions to our ever growing waste production. Incinerators are not the answer. Zero-waste to landfill is different from zero-waste. In the book, the author goes on to cite many cities and countries already doing their part to reduce the amount of garbage that it is sent to the landfill. I was not aware that cities like San Francisco are at the cutting edge of reducing waste. I recommend picking up this book to see how other places are doing their part despite many challenges. There isn't necessarily a right way to do it, but from the many examples given, here are the ideal steps to ensure zero waste initiatives are successful.Read More
It seems that modern medicine, the rise of antibiotics use in our food and as prescribed have destroyed good microbes and bacteria causing many of us to get allergies, become obese and get sick often. More good microbes and probiotics may be the answer we need to improve our health. SXSW 2017 has a few panels scheduled on microbes and gut biomes.Read More
I recently just finished Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending by Elizabeth Dunn & Michael Norton. I recommend picking it up at your local library. Buying it won’t increase your happiness, but here’s it is on Amazon (affiliate) if you are inclined.
We’ve all heard the saying “Money Can’t Buy Happiness” and based on Happy Money, it actually can as long as you spend it in 5 key areas.Read More
Cliff notes version of the Intention Experiment. Our thoughts matter. Here are some key supporting statements from the book about the importance of a positive mindset and a targeted intention. The text book definition of intention is "purposeful plan to perform an action, which will lead to a desired outcome" unlike a desire which means simply focusing on an outcome without a purposeful plan to achieve it.Read More
Buyology by Martin Lindstrom. A look into why we buy what we buy. What marketing and branding methods do companies use to sell us stuff. What advertising tactics work and don't work. A great branding book.Read More
Seven reasons why you should read "Turn Right at Machu Picchu" by Mark Adams before embarking on the Inca Trail. Unlike a guidebook, this offers a history lesson and a glimpse into the journey that you will be undertaking.Read More