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The Old Me

I’m not a frequent journaler, but every now and then I’ll unearth something I wrote in the past which e-brakes my progress during the workday, and I’ll have to process it. I recently found a digital pile of random snippets of my thoughts and words, and was rather shocked at who I used to be like…and who I am now.

I used to be afraid to talk to girls. I can start up a friendly conversation with anyone.

I was afraid of people in public. I am quietly entertained by observing people in public.

I went to the gym primarily to make myself as big as possible so no one would try to hurt me. I go to the gym to keep in shape now that I’m in my 40s.

I never shared any of my tech knowledge at work. I volunteer at the local public library to help others learn basic tech skills.

I never let the other driver in when it came time to merge into one lane. I ease up on the accelerator to allow a smooth merging process.

I rarely said no to a request, either professionally or personally. I have no problem telling someone “not now” or “no thank you” and giving them honest reasons why.

I equated my identity with the things I owned, hence I accumulated a lot of things. I have a small amount of things, and have streamlined my tech gear, my music gear, and my wardrobe.

I didn’t like who I was on the inside. I’m okay with myself.

May your path today lead you to read words from your past, reflect on who you were, grieve how things were back then, then give thanks for who you are today and the life you currently have.

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A More Realistic Approach to Extending Your Phone’s Battery Life

The Minimalists took a cutesy path to making your device last longer:

  • Put it in airplane mode.
  • Put it in a drawer.
  • Do something that doesn’t involve a glowing screen.

Great advice, guys.

For the rest of us who actually use our phone on a regular basis, how about offering some actual ideas to save battery life on your device?

Screen Brightness – Go to your phone’s display settings. Lower your screen brightness to about 30%. You’ll still get to view your screen, and you should be getting a couple more hours’ life out of your phone.

Bluetooth – Turn off Bluetooth when you aren’t needing to use an earpiece, a portable speaker, or another peripheral.

Low Power Mode – If you have an iPhone, set it to Low Power Mode in the settings. This will conserve power consumption by limiting a lot of background processes until you charge it again.

Reduce Motion – Again, for iPhone users, go into your Accessibility settings and turn off Reduce Motion.

Auto-Lock – In your phone settings menu, reduce the Auto-Lock to a shorter timeframe. Less screen time used to drain battery.

Calibrate your phone’s battery –  Once a month, let your phone run down its battery to 0%. Plug it in to charge fully to 100%. Try to not use the phone while charging. After the phone is fully charged, try a “warm reboot” by holding the on/off button and home button until your phone’s startup logo appears.


Apply these six methods to your routine, and hopefully you’ll prolong your enjoyment of your phone for months and years to come.





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Embracing the Quiet

Quiet can be unfamiliar. With a life dominated by noise, distractions, and chaos we don’t remember what it sounds like.

Quiet can feel tense, like a close-up shot in a suspenseful movie where we don’t know if the person is going to get attacked by surprise.

Quiet can be awkward. We may avoid the quiet so we don’t have to confront our own thoughts.

Quiet can be lonely, where you realize no one is there to keep you company.

I like the quiet because my brain can process what has happened during the day without other stimuli demanding attention.

I like the quiet because I don’t have to expend energy tracking someone’s voice in a crowded room.

I like the quiet because, eventually, a bunch of interesting thoughts pop into my head which never happen with noise surrounding me.

I like the quiet because it’s a valuable commodity in today’s society.

May we all embrace the quiet in our day…

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Five Counterintuitive Actions for the New Year

Consider the following for the upcoming new year and watch your life improve:

  • Frequent a locally-owned restaurant enough times where the folks behind the counter not only remember your name, they remember what you order. Tip them well.


  • When you receive a coupon in the mail for $10 off an oil change from a national chain, throw it away. Instead, go to a local town mechanic; someone who will not only change your oil, but take the time to get to know your vehicle, shoot straight with you about fixes you need now, in the near future, or in the long-term. Tip them well.


  • Look for a grocery store checkout clerk who asks how you are doing and actually stops what they’re doing to listen to your response. Go back to them even if it’s a long line.


  • Frequent a downtown bar or microbrewery and not only be nice to the waiter or waitress, but tip them well enough so they’ll remember you and what you drink when you come in the future. Enjoy looking like a big shot when you meet your friends there.


  • Stop when you see a youngster manning a lemonade stand on the side of the road. Fork over a $10 bill for a cup. Watch them lose their mind with excitement.


May 2017 be a year where we surprise the people we encounter with friendliness, patience, gratitude, and generosity. I guarantee the ROI on your kind actions will be more than you think.


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