The Uncertainty Mindset 2019-2020

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#46: Removing buildup

vaughn2nd January 2021 at 4:34pm

This issue is about limescale and how it builds up into a burly deposit that is hard to remove—and also about how shedding superfluous stuff or comfortable routiness or existential certainty is traumatic if done in a massive spasm every 2-3 years, but is much less so if done on a small scale every day or every week.

I argue for implementing an ongoing strategy of personal maintenance by design built around these kinds of very low-level, trivial-seeming changes that require almost no mental or emotional energy to maintain.

There may be a useful insight here for those who want to change life, to have less Stuff, to have equanimity when routine is disrupted, to handle uncertainty without collapse. This is it: It’s least painful to not let the buildup happen in the first place, and the unspectacular and quotidian act becomes powerful and persistent because it fades from consciousness and becomes habits.

You can find it here: #46: Removing buildup