Wednesday, July 18, 2012


I'm always inspired when I take a moment to read a few pages of 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think. I'm working through it slowly, not because it's difficult to read--it's absolutely not, it's very accessible--but because there's so much to digest, and all this great material is hidden in plain sight, by such short words, that I have to take a lot of breaks. It's the opposite of not being able to see the forest for the trees; it's more like intentionally taking the time to make a complete study of each tree, not caring if you get all the way through the forest or not. A lot of her points simply MAKE SENSE to me, and then I have to go away and think about them for awhile before I feel ready to come back and read a few more pages.

Then again, I'm a sucker for this kind of writing style; I LIKE ideas that seem simple at first and then rattle around in your brain so much that you have to put the book down and really give that simple idea the meditation it deserves. Paradoxes, koans, one-sentence statements connecting the large and the small, the meta and the minute, and using thoughts expressed in those particular ways to attempt to classify and sub-classify human behavior into easily-chewable chunks; that's a style that both makes sense to me and fascinates me. (Just ask Entrepreneur. I tend to go on and ON about it at dinner.)

Back to 168 Hours: The mixed reviews on Amazon may mean I'm the only one who likes this writing style; no matter. It speaks to me, not only because I like the general idea communication style so much, although that's a terribly clunky phrase, but also because of its subject matter; I NEED this kind of simple style more than ever on certain subjects, like...time.

Everyone knows that ADD kids have a weird relationship with time, and meditating ON time--how to actively feel the seconds pass, how to expand a minute so that it contains the whole world--is a happy notion in the abstract but, like many meditative exercises (at least for me) sometimes the same result is achieved, and also more practically emphasized, by an accompanying small action, like Buddhist monks climbing the 314 stairs to the prayer room daily as a form of active meditation. This idea--of actively tracking minutes, hours, etc--is completely fascinating to me.

In the book she recommends keeping a time log on a piece of paper, and she has some very plain but quite fine examples of these kinds of logs, but really who can POSSIBLY carry a notebook around? Instead, me being me (duh) I found two apps, one web-based (Yast) and one app-based (Time Recording) and I'm OBSESSED. It's. Just. So. Fascinating. Why?

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