One of my goals this year is to simplify my life. I've managed to get a lot of clutter out of my life simply because I live in a small apartment and I constantly have this thought of having to move again (and not wanting to pack a bunch of extra stuff). But in other ways I haven't managed to simplify my life. I live closer to work this year, yet I've ended up being busier than I was when I lived further away. I managed to fill my time. Just like a gas expands to fill a vacuum, my activities expand to fill my free time.
Since I've moved closer to Philly, I've managed to ramp up my martial arts training and teaching, intensify my physical conditioning training, start blogging, build websites, make my Chinese learning more consistent, participate in surveys for fun and profit, become more vigilant about trying to be more environmentally conscious, etc. All of those things take time. A Bruce Lee quote would be fitting for how I feel now: "It’s not the daily increase but daily decrease. Hack away at the unessential."
Exactly what I'm going to hack away still baffles me though. I'll probably cut back on the survey thing. They don't actually earn me much cash anyhow, and some of them are an utter waste of time. At some point, I'm going to stop tracking so many things on my training logs. I think I can safely say I've transformed my eating habits already, so I can probably safely stop tracking my food intake. I'll still need to track my strength and martial arts training to keep myself on track though. I'm torn about cutting back my teaching though. Though it really eats into my free time, I really enjoy seeing students make progress and it's good training for me to teach.
What to else to hack away? If I were insane, I'd say sleep and my refusal to drink caffeine. But I'm [arguably] not insane. Too bad there's no pithy quote about what the unessential is.