After 280 consecutive days of daily vlogging, I quit.
85 days short of my ultimate goal of 365, I gave up on something that brought me tremendous happiness, but not balance, to my life.
If you’re like me then we’re the type of person who has to fill up our life with as many exciting projects, relationships, ambitions, and opportunities.
We don’t get a lot of satisfaction from things, but rather experiences.
And so we fill our calendars with as many meetings as we can fit, we say “Yes” to every opportunity, we set goals for 10 different areas of our life.
We cram as much experience as we can, because the more we experience, the happier we’ll be. Right?
Like hoarders we see on those TLC reality shows, after awhile, collecting too much becomes more of a burden than a source of happiness.
Yes, I loved making fun family videos every single day, but it was too much.
It cut into my sleep schedule.
It cut into my work.
It cut into the very family time of which I was intending to capture.
And so I Pareto-ed it out of my life.
If you’ve ever heard of the Pareto Principle (or the 80/20 rule) it’s the idea that 80% of outcomes are determined by 20% of causes.
Examples (for clarity purposes, not actual statistics)…
- 80% of revenue is from 20% of clients
- 80% of wealth is owned by 20% of the population
- 80% of crime is committed by 20% of criminals
In January I took a good hard look at what actually brought me joy in life, and following the 80/20 rule, I discovered it was only a few things I did:
- Spending good, distraction-free, quality time with my two boys and my wife
- Doing good, meaningful work in my business
- Creating things that I enjoy creating
Of all the activities and experiences that make up my day to day life, these three categories bring about the most happiness in my life.
But life is made up of a valuable, and limiting resource: TIME. How do we find the right balance?
As much as I loved daily vlogging (creating things that I enjoy creating), it cut too much into my time to spend on everything else in my life.
So I applied the 80/20 rule even further…
Out of each specific area of my life, I looked at what 80% of things I could cut to dedicate my focus on the top 20% of things instead.
Daily vlogging fell in the 80% that needed cut.
Instead, now I’m focused only on a few smaller creative projects (this newsletter being one of them).
It’s amazing what happens when you cut the fluff to focus on a few things.
In your life, what are you holding onto that might be bringing you happiness but not balance?
What story is playing in your head that’s preventing you from saying “No” to the 80%?
What are the few things (the top 20%) that bring your happiness?
Why don’t you focus on only doing those things?
Sometimes you need a little nudge to make a change. I hope this is that nudge.