Can money buy you happiness?
Are experiences always better than things?
Does minimalism make you miserable?
Some of the wealthiest people are the most depressed and saddest in the world. Having too much stuff can be distracting and overwhelming. Less stuff brings more clarity, more space, and more freedom. Still, there’s nothing wrong with having shiny, new things.
You don’t want to depend on things to make you happy or to define you. But you also don’t want to feel guilty when you buy something you really want or will enrich your life somehow.
1) Just because you can afford the newest version doesn’t mean you have to spend the money. You can instead save your money, invest it, or give it to a worthy cause. That said, there’s nothing wrong with having shiny, new things.
2) Material rewards can get you to do tasks and projects that are difficult or boring. While it’s better to have internal motivation and know the why behind a goal, sometimes you need a little boost from an external incentive.
3) External rewards can be a way to practice patience. You replace impulse buying with delayed gratification. You will get the thing you really want only after you’ve met a certain milestone or taken a certain action step.
4) 12 essential things that improved my productivity and enhanced my life –
- Microphone with high audio quality: Shure MV-7
- Analog Alarm Clock: Orcbeg, circular vintage, lightwoodgrain no ticking clock
- Light-blocking sleep mask: MZOO sleep eye mask
- Writing pen: Uni-Ball Signo 307
- Paper planner: Moleskin 12 Month Daily Planner, Large (5 x 8.25”)
- Milk frother and steamer: Miroco
- LED Desk Lamp with USB Charging Port, Different Color Temperatures or Moods, and Brightness Levels, Auto-Off Timer, and Multiple Angle Adjustments: TaoTronics Desk Lamp model TT-DL16
- Bluetooth wireless, mechanical keyboard: Keychron K2
- Ergonomic wireless mouse: Logitech MX Master 2S
- Advanced noise canceling earbuds: Jabra Elite 85t True Wireless Bluetooth
- Paper tablet: ReMarkable 2
- Ergonomic office chair: Steelcase Gesture
5) Some things do make you sleep better, work better and generally feel better. The right tools can reduce friction, make time, and save money in the long run. They can help you build good habits, enjoy life more, savor the moment, and get more focused.
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Dyan Williams is a solo lawyer who practices U.S. immigration law and legal ethics at Dyan Williams Law PLLC. She is also a productivity coach who helps working parents, lawyers, small business owners and other busy people turn their ideas into action, reduce overwhelm, and focus on what truly matters. She is the author of The Incrementalist: A Simple Productivity System to Create Big Results in Small Steps.