The Top Things I Learned in 2017

The Top Things I Learned in 2017

As the happy-new-year message to the vast emptiness that comprises my readership, I thought I'd share with all none of a nice annual cheese-dipped list of personal growth bons mot. The problem, of course, would be qualifying a list of this sort. But lazy bloggers and even serious article writers have loved the list format for years now, and since most actual readers in cyberspace have been proven statistically to both skip over these verbose introductions and disregard the author's numbering in favour of their own internal priorities, I can be doubly forgiven (or multiply, or whatever orders of magnitude can be meaninglessly imposed upon the number zero) for not attaching to these any absolute guarantee that this is the descending order of their importance.

1. The amount we need to live--nay, to thrive and be happy--is even less than previously imagined.

2. You can bloom wherever you're planted, but finding the right fertiliser is key.

3. Doing less, and doing it more completely, seems to produce a better result than doing more.

4. Simple changes in attitude make a great difference. The way we see the world is a reflection of ourselves.

5. Developing a complete and solid routine for morning and evening and sticking to it no matter what isn't actually that difficult, either--it's only a matter of getting through the first several months, when it feels like a drag sometimes. After that initial phase, it just comes naturally.

6. Cold showers are really good not only for strengthening the immune system, but for tolerating cold weather outside. (Plus, once it's over, the rest of the day seems easy by comparison.)

7. Doing a hundred pushups right after rolling out of bed isn't actually as difficult as it sounds, once you get used to it.

8. How well I deal with people has a lot to do with how much freedom of choice I have about their company.

9. Having every nook and cranny of your digital life systematised and in perfect order is as much a boon to clarity of thought and mental health as having your home and physical possessions thus organised.

10. Matching socks are always optional.