Methods of Purging

In my quest to simplify my life, I’ve been habitually purging the abundance of things I have. I take unwanted clothing and books to Goodwill, I get rid of stuff cluttering surfaces in my room. And recycle odd socks as dusting rags. I do all of these things in an effort to make my space easier to clean. The less I have, the less there is to make clutter.

It recently occurred to me though that purging can go beyond physical items. I need to purge in my digital life as well. In a recent email search I found over 100 unnecessary emails. Deleted them all. I also took some time to unsubscribe to recurring emails I just don’t want or read. Next, I’m more than certain, I have a more than a few “friends” on Facebook who can get the boot. And then there’s the pictures. 

unnecessaty photos in your digital device take up valuable memory space 

I recently bought a new phone. My previous one was three years old and slowly dying. I made the decision to replace it when I realized I could only have phone conversations on speaker phone and could only use the keyboard when the phone was horizontal. After some research I found a great replacement that I’m hoping will last another three years or more. 

“Would you like to transfer your pictures?” The sales person asked after I made my selection.

“Sure,” I replied. 

An hour and change later my new device was finally ready after taking on 1300 pics. Kinda ridiculous. So now on a regular basis, I’m purging photos as well. They can eat up valuable memory space and make your device run poorly.

Holding onto things I don’t need seems to weigh me down a lot more than I’d like. Letting it go is liberating and helps me move forward in life. I highly recommend it.


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Filed under Better Choices, Downsizing, Philosophy, Purging, Simple Life

Have We Normalized Hate…Again?

There seems to be no shortage of hate these days. Through the pusher magic that is the Internet and its legal drug, social media, we get to see hate every day. It’s in the form of news bites from the Presidential race, click bate articles and the ultimate miscommunication  communicator, memes. 

  It started on message boards. I remember in the early days of the Internet coming across some real nastiness, especially in the comment sections of news articles. Trolls felt empowered by upsetting people with their vile vitriol. It’s what trolls do. 

Then when social media took off it quickly became a free for all. Maybe it’s the lack of face to face contact that allows us to think online hate is ok. Maybe that’s what made it so easy for conservative talk radio hosts to spit out ideas that are great for ratings, but not so good for a healthy society.

Cable news soon followed suit. Feeding paranoia and fear to those who would rather consume easy answers than consider hard choices and critical thought. 

And now, here we are: All hate, all the time. It’s so ubiquitous that a good portion of Americans consider it a strength. Thus we have Donald Trump as the GOP front runner. 

We don’t have to live like this. Hate and judgement do not have to be the norm. Hate is an easy way out. It’s an easy answer to hard questions we don’t want to struggle through. Judgement is similarly so. With judgement we allow ourselves to only see life through our own lenses tainted with our own disappointments and personal snares we just don’t take the time to untangle. 

I’m beginning to understand how people must have felt during the civil rights movement: Indignant about a normalized hate that was so institutionalized that to oppose it was considered unlawful. And then came the fire hoses, and the bombs, and the assassins. 

I know this is like yelling at the wind, but all this hate has to stop. No good will come of it. 


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Filed under Better Choices, Message, Philosophy, Social Media

Details Matter When You’re Frugal

Being frugal requires a strong attention to detail. Small things can add up in big ways to benefit or hurt a financial goal. I was recently reminded of this by happenstance.

 SF Parking Meters are not all the same price. ..I currently work nights in San Francisco, which means it’s best for me to drive into work and bear the expense. Part of that expense is parking. Although I am a self proclaimed parking witch, (I can almost always find convenient and sometimes free parking) I am resigned to pay for a metered parking spot near my place of work. 

Luckily, I found, meters are only required till 6 PM, which means at most, I pay for three and a half hours a day. At $3 an hour, this makes my daily parking less than $15 for an 8 hour shift. Almost unheard of in the City by the Bay. So, it would seem that I’m winning on this front.

I found out I can do better.

The other day there was no parking on the street I normally park on. After circling a couple of times I managed to find a spot just around the corner on another street. It was maybe a matter of 40 feet more of a walk. When I went to pay the meter though, I realized that the rate on that street is a dollar less an hour. To some it may not be that big of a difference. But, to a frugal fanatic like myself, I had to stop and do the math.

By parking around the corner I save up to $3.50 a day or $17.50 a week. That’s about a half a tank of gas. Multiply it by 4.2 weeks per month and now we’re talking $73.50. The way I shop, that’s almost two weeks of groceries. Now multiply that by 12, and I will save $882 over the course of a year. That’s a new tech gadget, or a few more kitchen knives, or maybe even a vacation if I do it right. 

Makes that extra 40 feet well worth it in my book. A lot can be accomplished by simply paying attention, and now I’m kinda kicking myself for not figuring this one out sooner, but hey, lesson learned. And now, lesson shared. 


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Filed under Better Choices, Frugal Life, Uncategorized