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watch less tv

Want To Save Time, Money and Be Happier? Do this One Thing

Almost everyone has a favourite show they can’t wait to watch. People say we are in a golden age of television. There are so many series that get people hooked and have them waiting for every episode. Equally popular, with new services people can binge watch a series over a weekend.

The rest of my family are all avid TV watchers, and they always have a few shows on the go. Most nights, they know what they are going to do because they have a show or two to watch. If they get busy, they have them recorded, so they have a backlog waiting for them.

Some of the most popular shows have been on for years. The walking dead is in its 8th season. When you think of it, that is a lot of hours spent in front of a TV.

There are so many 24-hour news channels that you could spend days watching. On top of this, many channels have nightly news. Recently, true crime and other ‘news shows’ have grown in popularity.

That said, TV shows and news are entirely different beasts, but they both depend on the same thing. That is, you sitting on the couch and staring at a screen.

For the following reasons, you should consider watching less TV. If that sounds horrible, remember that your life will be better if you watch less.

You’ll Have More Time

TV is a time killer. It eats up a lot of time, so much so that you don’t even realize that you are missing out.

Consider 25 episodes, 1 hour each for eight seasons. That’s over 200 hours or more than eight full days. If you like a show, you will watch the season. Even still, there are other things to watch on TV, like the news. That takes less commitment, but it is on every day.

For a reference on time, we talked about walking dead. That is eight full days. In that time you could have made a decent dent in writing a book or started a part-time business.

The time dedicated to TV isn’t always wasted, but it could be better spent with someone else. In this sense, you are doing something together, when you get a chunk of time. For my wife and I, we sometimes watch shows in the hour between finishing chores and getting ready for bed.

Unfortunately, time spent on TV is gone forever. After a year, you could have accomplished something significant. Most people do not have any ambitions, so this doesn’t matter. But if you have a dream, you will always have something to work on. Meaning, you could still be doing it instead of looking at the TV.

The most significant problem, with watching too much TV is all the time it takes. There is a commitment that comes along with choosing to watch a show. An episode itself isn’t usually too long, but a series and a season are. All the time spent watching TV, could instead be dedicated to something more fruitful.

You’ll Be Happier With Less Bad News

This one isn’t about TV shows, but it is instead about TV news. The news has a noble goal of informing us about what is happening in the world. For the most part, this isn’t what it does. But the focus of many stories is all off. While watching the news, you will see most of it is sad or unfortunate.

There are a lot of things happening in the world, especially the unpleasant. The problem with the news comes down to focus. You always have the choice to focus on the good or the bad; this option is up to you. But when you watch the news, the decision is made for you.

The news focuses on the bad and extreme. It shares with you, all the bad things happening across the globe. This lack of focus on local means the whole world of 7.6 billion + people is a source. So all that negativity gets dumped on you.

More recently, the local news has started to become a thing of the past. As a result, more and more of the press is regional or national, meaning it draws on an infinite source of bad news.

There are these charts, showing how many people need to die in each region of the world for the news to cover it. The numbers vary, but the message is the same, the press focuses on the sensational and extreme.

The problem with too much bad news is that you start to believe that the world is a dangerous place. You begin to accept the stories and think the world is becoming an ugly hellhole.

The fact remains, the world is the safest it has ever been. There are fewer murders, wars and diseases than ever before. But you wouldn’t know that from watching the news.

Cable Costs A lot Of Money

We haven’t ever had cable, so we’ve saved a lot of money over the years. That’s a massive issue with cable and TV; it costs so much.

Let’s do some quick math, say cable costs $80 a month, and you pay 12 times a year, that is $960. Not a small amount of money, after two years you could use that money to go on a trip.

After 30 years or so of spending that much, you will have paid a year’s worth of salary. You may not have cable for that long, but the amount of money mounts up if you think about it.

There are cheaper alternatives, costing $10 a month, but they pile up at a more reasonable rate. The problem with Netflix is that it doesn’t have anything new. As a result, you still need cable to watch all the latest shows.

Most of the people I know who have Netflix, still have cable, so they aren’t saving any extra expense.

Watching TV is Passive

Another problem with TV is that while you watch it, your brain goes into a sort of sleeping state. Because everything is happening in front of you on the screen, you don’t participate. You could say TV is high bandwidth. As a result, you don’t have the resources to think about everything you see, so it all gets absorbed.

For example, anytime I’m at my mom’s house, and we are watching TV, she gets into this state. If a strange or exciting advertisement comes on, I ask her about it. She usually doesn’t remember or says she was thinking about something else. Even if she doesn’t remember, she is still absorbing and consuming.

In general, when watching TV, your mind goes into this TV watching state. You stop thinking about what you are seeing because there is so much. You don’t question it, and it gets stored without being digested.

This information piles up and fills your mind with ideas about things and what to buy. Even ideas you don’t believe gets stuffed in and become hard to forget.

When you read, everything is slower, and at a lower bandwidth. Giving you more time to be critical of what you are consuming. You may not stop to think about what you are reading, but you can if you want.

With books, you’re focused on something specific, making reading more taxing. However, this keeps you learning and forces you to stay attentive. But, this also means you pay more attention when you read a book. This suggests that it is better for your mind than watching TV.

You Will Have Less To Talk About

It isn’t as bad as it sounds, but it does matter, though not in the way it may seem. When you watch a lot of TV, it becomes one of the things that fill your mind. This means, when you talk about what is going on in your life you will often fall back to TV.

In my family, when there are gatherings, there is usually a lot of talk about TV shows and sports. When this happens, I have nothing to say, so I can’t take part in the conversation.

But in my mind, I’m not missing out, the stuff that I ponder is way more interesting to me. Rather than thinking about TV shows, I focus on things that I have read or the projects I’m doing.

These things aren’t so easy to connect with other people on, at least as much as TV. But they are meaningful to the people in my social circle. You may be annoying to the people who spend all their time watching TV, but you will be attractive to more interesting people.

This point may seem silly, but it is true. If you decide not to watch TV, you will have less to talk about to some people. Many people watch a lot of TV, so keep this in mind as you may have to come up with different topics of conversation.

The News Is Fake

There are so many options when it comes to choosing what to give your attention to. There are so many different places to go for news, while some are better than others, but most are ‘fake.’

By fake, I do not mean that it is not true, though it could be. Unfortunately, it is impossible to know most of the time. When I say its fake, I mean that it doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter to you, and it won’t inform you of anything. In other words, it is not newsworthy. So it has no benefit other than getting you to focus on it and watch ads.

Another thing about ‘fake’ news, is that it focuses on the wrong side of reality. If you watched the news during the election, no one said Trump would win, and they were all oblivious to this ‘reality.’ When the results came in, many people were angry, because they didn’t see it coming. In a big part because the news wasn’t telling the truth or had no idea about the facts.

Anything on the news about celebrities is not news, but gossip. The coverage of these kinds of things is the definition of fake. In this sense, the news is information porn about things that are not newsworthy. For most people, this is useless anti-information, that should instead be called entertainment.

For the most part, the news is junk, and if you watch it, you will get what it has to offer, which is nothing.

The Solution To Your Problems

Cutting TV from your life doesn’t need to be an all or nothing choice. You can cut out a lot, cancel cable and only watch a couple of shows online.

When you cut out TV, you will be happier because you have less unfortunate things to occupy your mind. If you are unhappy, there are things in your life you should focus on instead. If you are always watching TV, you’re distracted and may forget about what is going on in your own world.

When you cut out TV, you have more time for other things, like reading books or working towards your goals. These kinds of things are much more satisfying in the long run. If you work towards a goal, you will always be happier down the line. If you usually watch TV, you may forget your problems, but they will come back to haunt you later.

There is also a risk that you will have less to talk about, especially when it comes to TV. But that can be replaced with more exciting conversations or people.

A quick and easy way to make your life better is to cut back on TV. Your brain will thank you for it.

better life

You Want A Better Life? Here’s How to Get Started!

Everyone wants a better life, but few know how to get started. We often think that if we don’t have a passion we can’t make a plan. It is also true that without a plan, a dream is almost impossible to make true.

The best way to get started is to figure out where you are, and where you want to go. To get there you need passion, and more important, you need to know what you are passionate about. Given this daunting task, we shouldn’t see it as a chore. Instead, see it as a labor of being honest about what you already know.

The goal is to get you over the initial hurdle of making your plan. You need an idea, you need a passion. Here are some steps to help you get a sense of who you are and what your passions are.

What Do People Ask you about?

It is hard to figure out what you are good at because you take it for granted. You don’t realize what you are an expert at because it comes so easy. This is where the people around you can help, think about what you’re asked. You’re asked because people think you will know.

Our family members may know about our skills better than we know ourselves. They ask you about what in their mind is the things you are skilled at. In my case, my mother always asks me about her computer. If something isn’t working, I’m the first person she calls. For me, this later translated into me doing work related to computers and technology.

For my mom, she sees me as a computer expert, because in the past I’ve proven that I know what I’m talking about. This is the same for you, people come to you because you have been right in the past. What you know about reflects what you are good at, which reveals what you are passionate about.

What Do You Do?

The things that you do often are a great guide to what you are passionate about. This is related to what people ask you about. You may not realize what you are doing all the time, but other people do. They ask you about the things that they see you doing.

Work-wise, this can be as easy as looking at what you do as a job. You may be the networking person, the social media guru, or a Microsoft expert. These are the areas that you have knowledge about and would be able to teach others.

Look at the fun things you do, if you are into sports statistics or reading books, these are places to start. If you read and suggest books to your friends, you already have a skill. It isn’t complicated, you only need to be aware and focused. It’s possible, that all it would take to pursue your passion is to change your job. Working at a bookstore or working with a publishing company could give you the purpose you seek.

What Do You Talk About?

The things we talk about represent who we are and what we are into. What we talk about is usually a sincere expression of who we are inside. Our words are an expression of what is going on inside our heads, even if we don’t realize it. For this reason, we should take note of what we talk about and see it as a guide to what you are passionate about.

Often during a conversation, I bring up new but relevant topics and ideas. Because of this, teaching is something I’m good at. You may talk about sports, TV or movies. These are the things you know about, here you will find interest and skills. You don’t need to be an expert, you only need to know more than other people, and that is what will make you an expert.

So What Is Your Passion?

If you’ve considered these three suggestions, you have a list of possible passions. When something is on all three lists, you might already be there. If something feels special or stands out, that could be it.

When you focus on the question of what your passion is, you will never find it. The thing is that we often already know what our passions are. The problem is that we are afraid to admit it or have excuses about why we can’t do it. Rather than searching, stop and think about what you already know. Now, instead of looking you should accept it and move forward on making it a reality.

amazing story

The Amazing Story of Someone You’ve Never Heard Of

Edward Bryant grew up in the East End of London. His parents had moved so his father could work in a factory. Life was tough, the air was dirty and sights of poverty were all too common.

Edward’s parents were often too busy to notice him; he was one of many mouths to feed. Despite this, he had high hopes for himself. He saw a different future that could be his, he wanted to travel and leave the sad world behind.

He was able to sell newspapers. With hard work, he helped his family with some extra money, but his luck didn’t change. One day he found a job in the newspaper that offered a ticket to Canada in exchange for work as a sailor. He told his parents of his plan. They were reluctant to see him go but knew there wasn’t much future if he stayed.

The day before he was set to leave, he packed his few belongings. That night, as he slept he dreamed of the life he would soon discover. The next day, he woke up early, said goodbye to his family and headed to the Port of London.

The steamship was huge, it was the largest thing Edward had seen in his life. It filled him with hope. As he boarded the ship, he turned and said his last goodbye to his home. The days and nights were long, the work was tough and the rocking of the ship made him sick.

After two weeks the ship arrived in Canada. He was young and without skills, but luckily factories were desperate for workers. After searching, he found a job and a place to stay. With this, his new life in a new began.

When he started he was sweeping floors, but in time he proved himself. He moved up through the ranks, doing many jobs along the way. He was always moving forward and proving himself to the people around him. He became known for his ability and dedication.

A few years later, he had gotten married and started a family. He had also moved forward in the company and was now the foreman. He, his family and life were good.

He grew a great reputation in his community, he was popular and had many friends. He and his wife threw grand parties, and everyone was happy to be invited. He was one of the first people in his community to have a TV, so friends would always visit to watch. He was ahead of his time, but he stayed grounded, contributed to his community, and loved his family.

Life was great for many years, but as Edward got older, so did everything else. Unbeknownst to him, there was trouble at the factory. The owner was running late on bills and missing payments. Behind the scenes, the factory was in trouble, but the workers and Edward were in the dark.

One day there was a sudden and unexpected announcement. The factory was bankrupt and everyone was laid off.

Edward took this hard, he had given so much to the company and had helped bring it to where it was. Yet the poor choices of his bosses ended everything. Soon after the factory closed, and as a result of the stress in his life, he had a stroke. The timing was horrible and it changed his life forever.

His recovery was slow, but he had hope and a willingness to make things better. After spending the winter in their home and seeing the effect it had on his health. His doctor recommended they travel south to a warmer climate. Despite the circumstances, they knew it had to be, so he and his wife resolved to do it.

The next winter they headed to Florida, the weather did wonders for his health, but it was a difficult life. He and his wife were able to make ends meet by cleaning rooms and doing maintenance work. It wasn’t easy, but they were happy in the time they had together. They continued this routine for many years and built a life in Florida.

When he died, he was missed by his family and his community. They appreciated the great effort he put towards improving their lives. He is remembered for his great accomplishments. In particular, he started in poverty and found great success.

He proved that with dedication, hard work, and a strong will anything is possible. Even later in life when he had bad luck, he never gave up and continued to show great perseverance. He is fondly remembered to this day by his grandson.

no longer human

No Longer Human and How We See Ourselves

‘No Longer Human’ is the second best selling Japanese novel of all time, it is also Dazai’s masterpiece. These factors are enough to make this book worth reading. This said there is a lot more to this book than international accord.

It starts with the introduction describing three different pictures of a boy. The boy changes a lot with each picture, it’s hard to believe he is the same person. These pictures set the stage for the book that follows.

Basics of The Story

The book is only four chapters and is about a boy named Oba. In the beginning, we learn he is a smart child. We also learn that he was abused by a maid in his home.

As he gets older he learns he shouldn’t say anything and always accept what is given to him. Rather than appear smart, he decides it will be easier to be a comedian. He does this because he thinks it will cause him less trouble.

At one point, a classmate notices that Obe falls on purpose, and is only pretending to be incapable. Because of this, Obe decides he must befriend the boy so his secret can be kept.

We learn Obe likes to draw and it is his dream to do drawings. He never shows his work to anyone but his only friend.

Time passes and he grows older. He goes to university in Tokyo. There he meets and befriends an art student. This new friend introduces him to all sorts of things he hasn’t done or seen before. He picks up drinking and his school suffers.

From this point on he becomes an alcoholic. He later meets a woman who helps him get a job as a drawer for a magazine. He finds some success, but his drinking becomes a problem again, and his life starts to fall apart.

From then on many bad things happen to him. The pinnacle of which, he tries to kill himself unsuccessfully.

Perception vs Reality

At the end of the book, we learn that the story is a collection of journals that was given to the author. He received them from a barkeeper who had received them from an anonymous source.

The barkeeper talks about Oba and thinks he is the source of the journals. She also says that he wasn’t at all like he described. In fact, he was the opposite, a very kind and friendly man.

This ending is what makes the book amazing. It changes your whole perspective of what actually happens in the story.

The book seems to be about the horrible life of a bad person. In this sense it is depressing, Oba is without a doubt a depressed. But this way of looking at it is dishonest because it doesn’t account for what other people see or know.

How About Us

This story shows the difference between what we think of ourselves and what the rest of the world sees. It also shows how our minds can get locked into thoughts and repeat them.

This isn’t to say that people don’t have real problems. But it is something to be aware of. The potential here is that we over think things and don’t see ourselves for who we are.

It could be that the world thinks we are a great person and our friends and family are happy with who we are. With this perspective, the negativity is only in our heads.

It is not always the case that our problems are this simple. But it is possible that this could explain part of them.

Rather than being like Obe, try to see yourself as the person that everyone else sees and respects you as.

Self Authoring

Jordon Peterson and Self-Authoring

I was having a particularly difficult week. Work was getting me down and my life felt like it was going nowhere.

I’d recently listen to one of Jordon Peterson’s talks. He had mentioned his Self-Authoring Suite, so I decided to order it. After getting my login information, it took me about a week to actually sit down and get started.

After starting the past-authoring section, events from my past started filling my consciousness. Getting started seemed to open the floodgates to some of the deeper recesses of my mind.

I started to imagine some of the painful events in my past, as they were taking up more of my attention than I realized. This was an interesting observation. It was also strange that the positive events weren’t something I thought about often.

Writing my memories and recounting the events was helpful, as I reconsidered them in a new light. Later making observations and criticizing the events had a neutralizing effect. This is where the real value comes from.

It Isn’t Easy, In Fact, It Feels Bad

It took me a week to get through everything, as there was a lot to write about. I noticed during this time I felt horrible. At first, I didn’t understand why, but then came across a video where Jordon spoke about this side effect. It made sense to me, and I felt better after learning about it.

The exercise was taxing during the time it took to do the work. But since finishing, I’ve felt much better about the memories that used to pop into my mind. In fact, the more traumatic ones are gone, and I’ve not thought about them since.

There were also insights I had after the fact. In particular, I learned about attachment theory and how it has affected me. It appears to explain how I’ve dealt with relationships in the past.

Next, I did the present authoring, faults, and virtues. The faults module was helpful, though I found that many of my faults weren’t on the list.

While doing the virtues, I thought about who I am, what I’m good at and what I want to do. This was insightful on its own, even though it has been clear to me for a while. I’m optimistic that this program will inspire me to take more action.

After completing these, I took some time to rest and think about how to approach the future authoring. In particular, I saw two options for myself. The first is to be a writer and create a business around that. The second is technical work related to my day job.

Visions Of The Future

Then I had a dream where I met Jordan Peterson and asked him about my dilemma. He told me I should do the one that matters most.

The next day I wrote him an email asking the same question. A few minutes later I got an auto-reply saying he was busy and likely wouldn’t reply. Fifteen minutes later, at 12:34 (I’m superstitious about numbers) he replied. “If you’re going to pursue writing as a career make sure you have a good business plan because it is near impossible to monetize.”

With this advice, I went forward with the future planning.

The program is time-consuming and exhausting. But after finishing, my efforts have improved, and I am more focused than ever before. Also, I have a goal again and can see what I need to do without the baggage of the past holding me back.

I’d recommend this program for anyone who wants more self-awareness. Or needs help clearing some negative or destructive thoughts. It will also help you get a grip on what you need to do to realize some of your goals.

this is an opportunity

The Economy Sucks. But This is an Opportunity

We find ourselves in confusing economic times, it is hard to see what will happen or where we are headed.

Some would say our situation is a result of our capitalist system.

Others will say this is the best we can expect. This conclusion is difficult for many because the economy isn’t working for them.

Since the 70’s wages have stagnated. More recently inflation and interest rates have been low. Meanwhile, we aren’t seeing the growth we’ve come to expect from the past.

We can see this stagnation in the last decade. But our governments don’t seem to have any solutions left.

Some believe capitalism is the greatest economic machine ever discovered. This is true in many ways, never has the standard of living been so high. Never before have people lived so well.

Some will claim that the real problem is that we lost our faith in real capitalism. The machine is breaking down and we aren’t fixing it. Instead, we are moving away and asking for the wrong things.

There Are Winners

There are obvious winners in the globalization of markets. Those at the top, with access to resources, have the power to dominate global markets. And, so they have gained greater reach than ever before.

This is also good for poor countries, as they have gained innovations at a lower cost. It also means people have the ability to move to places where their skills can be utilized.

The socialists, Richard D. Wolff says capitalism is alive and well in China and India. But the game is over in the west, our economies have reached their limits and there is no room for growth.

There are calls for a leftist revolution. A push for more socialism, or a universal basic income. This could be a solution, as it would solve some of the problems that need to be fixed.

But this means the west has run out of gas and is cruising on fumes. While less developed countries are hungry, they will take the lead. In the future, they will be the source of innovation.

There Is Opportunity

In this lies an opportunity, for those with skills and a willingness to explore. Now the world is a place of opportunity for those up to the challenge and willing to take the risk.

This also means the innovators of today, have access to global markets. As well there are new job opportunities for those willing to get needed skills and move to new places.

While everyone braces for impact and backs away from the challenge. There are gaps opening for smart risk takers.

Instead of seeing this as a problem with the economy, it should be seen as a problem with our leadership. For those willing to take the chance to become a leader, there will always be opportunities.

Rather than blaming your country or the people around you. See this time as an opportunity to take big chances and huge risks. With a bigger globally connected world the opportunities are greater than ever before. With big opportunities comes the possibility of huge rewards.

The future belongs to those who see today’s problems as a readjustment of values. People who blame the government are going to be left behind, the government has shown it doesn’t know what to do. So we as individuals need to be the change we wish to see in the world.

break the rules

Sometimes You Need to Break the Rules. Here’s Why.

Years ago, I built a website that sold code samples. All the samples were free if you knew where to find them. The licenses of the code made it legal to sell them. But if you asked the developers they might have been pissed.

The product failed in part because I was afraid of it succeeding. I felt like I was breaking the rules by running it. At the same time, there was competition, and they didn’t care about my rules. In the end, they were successful, and my site went away.

The problem with taking the moral high ground is that you give other people an advantage. Reason being, they don’t care about your rules so they don’t have to follow them. This might seem like a strange way of looking at this problem, but it is the way things tend to work.

How Did You Get Here

From an early age, you are taught that you should do the right thing and be good people. For the most part, this works out well and helps us avoid unnecessary conflict and jail.

But there are times when it works against you. The worst times are when you miss out or lose because you aren’t willing to break rules that someone else is.

Put another way, when you won’t break the rules you give anyone who will an advantage over you. So anyone who doesn’t worry about your rules always has an easy way to get ahead of you.

Also, sometimes we try to do the right thing because we ‘think’ it is the right thing. In reality, most of the time it doesn’t make much of a difference. At times rules don’t exist for a reason, they are a formality rather than protection.

What You Should Do

But how do we deal with these situations? The hard part is knowing when it is ok to break a rule. For people who don’t care, this isn’t an issue, but you don’t want to be like them. It is better to be selective about the rules you break.

The goal is to see the opportunities where it is alright to ignore the rules. In my example, if I wasn’t worried about what other developers thought, I may have made more money.

The best guide would be, don’t hurt too many people along the way. You shouldn’t strive to always break the rules, you’ll end up in jail. But know there are times when it is the best approach.

The better way to look at this is to see rules as fuzzy. In general, the rules are less clear than you’ve been told. At the same time, if you still think you must always do the right thing, you need to be ok with losing because of it.

Don’t let people cheat you out of opportunities. Sometimes you must fight fire with fire. But remember, be careful not to wrong people for no reason.

trouble finishing a book

Trouble Finishing A Book, Try These 4 Things

A few months ago I sat down to write a book, but I kept struggling to get started. I was having trouble finishing a book. I realized I was missing something and needed a better process.

After some experiments and thinking about what worked in the past, I came up with these four ideas. Because of them, I was able to write 30 chapters in less than two months. 

1) Keep It Simple

I see a novel as a series of short stories within a big story. This process works for me because of this understanding. If you focus on the whole book, it might seem impossible to finish. Huge ideas are daunting and challenging to get on paper. Even worse, if the challenge seems too great, you might get discouraged and give up.

The best way to avoid this is to break your big story into smaller more manageable pieces. When you are thinking about what you want to write, write down each piece of the story in a list. If a single story ends up being too big, break it down into smaller pieces. Add each of these new stories as a separate item on the list.

The simpler each story is, the better. This will make it easier to write each one, and that will make you more likely to complete your book. If you are having trouble finishing a book, it is essential to focus on keeping things simple.

2) Paper Checklists

Checklists are super simple and an often overlooked tool for planning a book. They are an indispensable tool to help get your story finished.

The best way to make a checklist is with paper and pencil. The idea of using an app seems promising, but some real paper is always superior. With paper, it will always be in front of you. Also, you won’t get distracted by your phone when you look at your list.

The first step is to think of every major event or story in your book and write it down. I try to write one sentence, and if there are more details, I add them below later.

You can reorganize the stories if that will help with the flow. It is also helpful to separate your stories into different sections if necessary. This way you can keep track of the different parts of your story, rather than getting caught up in the whole book.

Another benefit of a checklist is that every time you finish a story, you get to check it off. This gives you a feeling of satisfaction and encourages you to do more. The good feelings and motivation compensate for the time it takes to make a list. When you are having trouble finishing a book, it is helpful to work with a checklist of chapters.

3) Make Writing A Routine

Rather than focusing on a single story and putting time aside when you can, it is much better to make a routine. A routine means dedicating regular time to focus on working on your book.

The ideal plan would be to set aside time every day, or during the work week. During that time, work on one of your stories. What I did was set a daily goal of getting one story done. So I would sit and write till it was finished.

The importance of a routine is that once you get your book or novel completed, you can start working on something else. A routine also helps, because you get satisfaction from the process of writing. If your only goal is to finish, you won’t have a reason to write again. When you are having trouble finishing a book, you need to make sure writing is part of your routine.

4) Clearest Stories First

At first, focus on the stories that are already in your head. If you already know them, they will come out faster. It is useful to get them out because you won’t have to think about them anymore. It will also give you a chance to see what you have and what you need to fill in the gaps.

Knowing what you have, you might want to reorganize your book. You may want to add new stories or change the order of the existing ones. This is why a pencil is best, cause you can erase and rewrite.

Getting the most important stories done is a great way to get yourself in the mindset for success. When you see progress with these stories, you will get the motivation to do more. When you are having trouble finishing a book, focus on writing the most evident most essential parts of the story first. This will help you figure out what to put in the spaces in between.

The Takeaway or How To Get Over Trouble Finishing A Book

If you want to finish your book and be more productive, you need a system in place. The ideas above should give you a good starting point. But you may need to tweak or add to the process, so it works better for you.

It is great to finish your book, and if you have a good process, you can always write more. With each effort, you can improve your process and write better books.

The bell jar by Sylvia Plath

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath

The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath was recommended to me many years ago, but I never thought to pick it up. Truth is, I thought it was famous because the author killed herself. Part of me also thought it was a girl’s book, in the sense that it written for a female audience.

Recently, I was ordering books on Amazon and decided to get this one as well. These days I have an affinity for books about unsavory and troubled people. So, the tumultuous life of the author and her death made it more interesting.

Troubled people tend to be fascinating. A troubled life isn’t usually as boring as a normal life, which is why they inspire books. The idiosyncrasies of peoples lives are what draws me to books like The Bell Jar.

In the beginning, the book starts out slow and whiny. I get the sense that Plath is using it as an opportunity to get some things off her chest.

Some of the problems she talks about, I can’t relate to. My bias, as a guy, I don’t have the experiences of a woman. Especially the problems Esther seems to have.

The book gets better around the half way point. Esther’s real problems start to show, and this is where the book gets interesting. The pace speeds up and I was much more engaged and focused on reading. The second half took half the time it took to read the first half.

Esther’s life is changing from normal too chaotic. The struggles of a student, turn into the struggles of someone with severe depression. At this point, it is much deeper into her life than you’d expect from earlier in the novel.

I won’t go into any more details because it is definitely worth reading. For anyone interested in depression, people, and well-written books.

This Book Is Amazing

I particularly noticed the quality of the writing. But don’t take that lightly, any published book must be good, so this was a step above many others. Also, at times there is a sense of poetry in the words that shines through.

There is an urgency that comes along with it. This could be the author’s emotion on the page, or the connection I made with the character, either way, it is strong.

This book gave me a perspective on the experiences of women that I wouldn’t have known otherwise. When I say this, I mean it was insightful beyond what I’d expect to get out of a book.

The back cover says, “Celebrated for its darkly funny and razor-sharp portrait of a society which refuses to take women’s aspirations seriously.” When I first saw this I didn’t believe it, but the book has proven me wrong.

This is an amazing book that is well worth reading. I recommend it for the quality of writing and insights into the world of women and depression.


learn language

Looking for a challenge? Consider Trying This!

I’m taking a Japanese language class and by god is it difficult. Every week I think I’m making progress, but then the class puts me back in my place. Japanese may be extra difficult, but picking up any new language is a serious challenge.

Learning a new language messes with your brain. For most people learning something new is the only challenge they get in their daily lives. That said, as you get older and more into your ‘life’ the types of challenges you experience decrease.

Usually, we only see challenges within the domain of work. Which although challenging, usually needs the type of thinking common for work. But that type of thinking is what you use all year long so it is nothing new.

It is About Learning New Things

When you learn a new language, you are faced with the challenge of everything being new. You learn a new grammar, a bunch of words and some idioms. You also may discover new words that mean something different from what you’d expect.

These challenges go to the core of you being and affect the way your brain works. Language is one of the first things you learn as a child. So it is the basis for everything else you learn afterward. In this sense learning a new language means digging deep into the core of everything else you know.

Being forced to learn something new keeps you on your feet. The challenge is exhausting and time-consuming. You end up having to spend all your free time focused on the language. But in the end, you get something great.

You learn something fundamental, that you can build on top of. With this you have access to new ideas, thoughts and mental processes. You can also consume a whole new set of entertainment, like books and movies. Greatest of all, you gain the opportunity to talk to new people.

Learning a new language is a lifetime challenge, that you never seem to finish. But you always learn more and are making new accomplishments. At some point, you can have a conversation, then understand a TV show, then read a book. At each step, you have an accomplishment, while still having something to work towards.

It is fascinating to hear someone speak two different languages. But if they can speak two languages that means they have gone through a challenge. A challenge that you will also need to go through to succeed.

At the same time, their success encourages your success, as it proves that it is possible. If you follow their lead, you have a greater potential for success yourself. This is because you have seen it happen with your own eyes.

Hearing someone speak another language makes me think it would be amazing if I could do the same thing. That serves as a motivation for creating a goal. And as a goal, it is way better than watching YouTube videos.

The Greatest Lesson of All

There is another lesson you learn when learning a new language. You get to re-learn persistence and sticking with something. And that lesson could be one of the greatest lessons you can ever learn.

The key is that this is a challenge, and challenges make you great. Especially this type of challenge as it could take years to complete. But in the end, the rewards will be greater than anything else.

Getting great at something feels good and is important for your self-esteem. Your sense of self improves when you do something amazing. It also makes it easier to do other things later.

Consider learning a new language when you are looking for a serious challenge.

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