Merlin’s weekly podcast with Dan Benjamin. We talk about creativity, independence, and making things you love.
Merlin Mann | Jul 7 2008
As my battle with clutter continues, one of my favorite people (and one of the smartest guys writing for the web, period), Kevin Kelly, noticed my efforts and took note of my affection for Peter Walsh's wonderful book, It's All Too Much.
My review for Cool Tools is indeed adapted from a few posts that originated here, but I think it's worth pointing to because, a) that book has had a huge influence on how I think about my relationship to "stuff," b) I'm honored that KK liked what I'd had to say about it, and c) if you aren't already reading Kevin's sites -- particularly his consistently insightful The Technium column -- you'd do yourself a favor to get acquainted fast. Kevin's the real deal.read more »
grant balfour | May 19 2008
Two stories that I know I should be learning from:
Merlin Mann | May 6 2008
I'm still in a de-cluttering mode these days (more on that soon), so I was intrigued by this resource, which arrived this morning via Mrs. Folders.
While primarily a trade group for "professional organizers," the National Study Group on Chronic Disorganization site has some handy documents and links to help with identifying and solving pathological problems with clutter and hoarding.
If you can tolerate the site's gruesome ardor for PDFs, you'll find some informative and eye-opening stuff. From their fact sheets page:
I really liked some of the Tips for Overcoming Procrastination for the Chronically Disorganized Individual or Household (excerpted):read more »
Merlin Mann | Apr 21 2008
As of next Sunday, our lovely daughter will have been with our houshold for six months (Happy Half-Birthday, Eleanor). It's a good arrangement, and we're all pretty happy about the whole thing so far. But, to look around our house, you'd think we were raising a small army of babies, each of whom has their own Amazon Prime account and an addiction to things that are shaped like giraffes.
Oh my, the stuff. The baby stuff. Everywhere. Means of conveyance, swingy seat, Bumbo, squeaky toys, fuzzy toys, toys for biting and bending, jammies, jackets, socks that do and don't look like shoes, amusing hats, blankets, books, rattles, pacifiers, cleaning supplies, extra diapers -- plus of course, there's the raw tonnage of stuff belonging to the caretaking adults that has been displaced or disused as a result of the occupying baby's needs. It is a scene, man, I can assure you. And there's not an iota of blame to place on the actual baby; it's all us (and mostly me). [By the bye, for an illuminating look at the perils of the creeping ParentCrap industry, have a look at Parenting, Inc. It's chilling. And, for me, personally damning.]
At any rate, as we approach that august 183-day mark in our little girl's life, you might be able to guess where my head is right now. Yep. It's on clutter, and on what I need to do to get my face back into Peter Walsh's excellent de-cluttering book as a means for regaining domestic sanity and striding toward the possibility of a life without tripping, piling, or losing what's left of my sleep-deprived mind.
But let's start with first principles:read more »
Merlin Mann | Feb 19 2008
While I wish Peter had held out for a more cromulent title ("Does This Clutter Make My Butt Look Fat?" Ouch.), I so admire this guy's grip on what clutter does to your mind. Or at least what it does to mine.
Typically swell quote:
and, later:read more »
Merlin Mann | Dec 27 2007
There's a thread on Ask Metafilter about book-centric clutter that's getting lots of good comments right now. It started when matildaben asked for "practical and creative systems for reducing the number of books I own," saying:
The solutions people offer are thoughtful and suggest that many of the better ideas are coming from fellow bibliophiles who've struggled with The Book Problem.
read more »
grant balfour | Dec 13 2007
Quote:read more »
There's the First Law of Kipple... 'Kipple drives out nonkipple.'
Matt Wood | Dec 11 2007
You’re feeling stress about your RSS feeds? Talk about self-created problems. The real solution to managing RSS feeds is to stop reading RSS feeds. It’s simple ... when a purely optional “convenience” technology is causing stress, it’s time to re-evaluate at a pretty fundamental level.
I read this and thrashed and spluttered like Yosemite Sam for a while before I admitted it: he's right. It is a self-created problem, and I need to understand what makes me feel the need to consume the equivalent of a Carnegie library every day, instead of just finding a more efficient way to choke it down.read more »
Matt Wood | Nov 16 2007
In the few weeks since I wrote my first plea to trim the fat from your iTunes library, I've continued purging my own collection. On the first pass, I simply deleted the clearly objectionable stuff, things that I couldn't understand what made me want to keep them in the first place. It was rather easy, and like I said, it slimmed my corpulent media collection by a third.
Now though, it's getting down to brass tacks, and I'm making some hard decisions about what to keep. I don't need to do this for disk space, mind you, but as I've been trying to do a better job of organizing all my music and video with smarter lists and ratings, I've come to a simple conclusion: even if I still think it's good, I just have too much.read more »
Matt Wood | Oct 15 2007
My music buying habits have slowed considerably since my college days, when I'd rush down to the music store every Tuesday and spend every penny I hadn’t guzzled through a beer bong the previous weekend, but I still managed to amass a rather prodigious CD collection. When I got a Mac and an iPod, this turned into a rather prodigious iTunes library, and quickly became a major thorn in my side.
Having suffered through a couple hard drive crashes, upgrades, and subsequent backing and re-backing up lately, I've really been feeling the weight of that 100+ GB media millstone around my neck. I felt so great when I ripped that last CD and put all those unsightly jewel cases into storage, thinking it would simplify my life. Instead, it just created bigger headaches.
I know, I know, there are a bazillion ways I can slice and dice my iTunes library, storing it on different drives, shunting the videos off to a server, pimping out my machines with terabyte drives, etc, but it begs the question: do I really need all that crap in my life?read more »
|EXPLORE 43Folders||THE GOOD STUFF|