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The 2019 Not Doing List: Addition by Subtraction

In order to have effective New Year’s Resolutions, one has to find the processes and schedule that will enable them to come to pass. There also has to be a selection of items that you’re choosing not to do. This is both a set of interesting and productive things – a set of different books to read, websites to do, and so forth – as well as activities you are no longer going to do.

A list of the projects that didn’t make the cut for 2019 would be both boring to list here. If other goals get done maybe they’ll resurface anyhow. I think I’ve locked down a calendar but that will be an ongoing experiment (workout in morning or afternoon?)

The list of things not to do is probably more productive to write out:

  1. Watching (Non-elimination) Sports TV. This is the pareto rule for my entertainment: why not concentrate just on the most meaningful games? Spending literally hundreds of hours to watch games that might have playoff implications rather than the playoffs themselves is just ridiculous. There is a related black hole – following news and sports commentary. The Pirates setting themselves up for another underwhelming season makes this easier. I watched hardly any Warriors or Penguins regular season games and was not the worse for wear during playoff runs. There will still be plenty of sports to watch. Two exceptions: social gatherings and while on a treadmill. This alone should free up time to ensure reading goals are met. I’ve whacked the MLB.TV subscription.
  2. Sharing Negative Thoughts. Impossible to eliminate of course. But I too commonly wrap some negative musing in the cloak that what I’m really doing is sophisticated analysis, or somehow if shared (which I don’t do mostly, if thinking about a human) would really actually be helpful for them. That this is on my radar at all is probably a function of the meditation course/positive 2019 goal. Who am I kidding if I think complaining about the TSA, does anything positive for anyone? Commiserating with Erica that some other parent lets their kids play too much on a iPad? Even if this was absolutely correct – though I can’t know – what’s the point of letting the thought take residence in my mind. Even politically – one can be clear eyed about the current state of politics without _bemoaning_ it. I thought about writing goal as just “negative thoughts” as something to remove, but that’s impossible. It is more actionable to say I’m not going to share them unless doing so is trying to change something. That should head much of this self-inflicting disease off at the pass, make more room for gratitude.
  3. One of the Daily Meals. The verdict seems in on the effectiveness of intermittent fasting. I will keep eating windows in a given day to eight hours. The exception will be if I’ve done serious exercise in both the morning and evening.
  4. Alcohol, alone. I’m not sure it’s realistic — or even desirable — to get rid of alcohol entirely. But it is on balance negative and there are plenty of other ways to relax. I think I’ve used sore muscles as a justification for a glass of red wine, that turns into two. This is an easy rule to follow. Alcohol may be on a time out altogether until I hit weight goals but there are other ways to implement that goal instead. As with the sports watching, concentrate the thing that is good in small doses.

Published inGoalsSelf-Improvement

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