By Leo Babauta
Our lives become filled, even controlled, by the things we think we need to do.
We think we can’t live without these things, but actually, we can.
We can opt out.
Think about how busy our lives have become. Think about how distracted we’ve become. Think about how many things needlessly pull on our attention, our time, our money, our sanity.
We have let these things overcome us, but in fact, we have a choice. We can become conscious, we can choose to do and consume and need less.
It’s the simplest way to simplify our lives: we simply opt out.
Some examples — note that I don’t think these are all evil. I only think we can reconsider:
Facebook & Instagram. Of course, these are easy to pick on, but in truth, they take up a large space of our mindshare. Many of us check them multiple times a day, getting a constant stream of distraction. And ads. And tracking of our online activity. Without too many benefits. Opt out: I’ve been off Facebook for years now, and don’t feel I’m missing anything. I am on Twitter, but rarely check it, and don’t have it on my phone.
Advertising. We put up with advertising, which is intrusive and distracting and makes every experience worse. Opt out: Stop watching advertising. Block it. Don’t participate in things that are ad-supported. Yes, that means that good publishers will have to find other ways to support themselves.