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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Automate and Delegate

I have often said, based on absolutely no scientific evidence whatsoever, that 90% of life is taken up by icky-picky details.

Now, I know that many great teachers say that finding pleasure in the details is key: "Chop wood, carry water."


But doesn't it seem that there are some details we're better off without?

For example: For nearly three years, I had to go to one bank every month and stand in long lines to pay my rent. Then I had to go to another bank to pay my utilities. The fourth year. I had a personal assistant who did it for me (while I was working out of town); but when she moved to Guam, it was back on me.

Now I live in school dorms, and rent and utilities are deducted from my check every month.

So for one year I delegated, and now I've automated.

What a relief.

So here's my suggestion: First, ask yourself: "What details am I taking care of that I don't absolutely have to?" Automate what you can, and delegate others to employees, appropriate family members (chores are good for kids), or anyone else that seems fair.

Then, learn to find joy in the things you must do, that are unavoidable.

Because surely, life is more complicated than it was for our ancestors. Any way we can, as Thoreau suggested, simplify, is a step in the right direction.

You'll be happier.

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