Saturday, May 2, 2015

5 Life Hacks That Will Have You Doing Life Better


I think sometimes (most times) we make this 24 hour earth axis revolution much more difficult than it actually has to be. Our day to day spinning warps into a hyper speed, Americano blur that imitates the twisted tale of our day, "Busy = successful."

We clock too many work hours. 

Spend too much of our "free" time staring at screens. Do yourself a favor and log the number of hours you spend on your phone, tablet, iPad, Mac, or TV. If you are like the average American, I hope you are sickened by the data you collect: "In the United States, people spend an average of 444 minutes every day looking at screens." Do the math that's a whopping 7.4 hours of your life.

Horrifying Chart Reveals How Much Time We Spend Staring at Screens.  Zach Epstein 


We don't invest enough of our day to day life in communal table time-- "Sadly, Americans rarely eat together anymore. In fact, the average American eats one in every five meals in her car, one in four Americans eat at least one fast food meal every single day, and the majority of American families report eating a single meal together less than five days a week. It's a pity that so many Americans are missing out on what could be meaningful time with their loved ones, but it it's more than that. Not eating together also has a quantifiably negative effects both physically and psychologically."


The Importance of Eating Together: Family dinners build relationships, and help kid do better in school.  Cody C. Delistraty

We don't breathe in this sacred breath of a life we've been given enough.

When is the last time you ventured into the great outdoors? Stopped by the library? Or enjoyed a scoop of your favorite ice-cream just because?
If you begin to analyze your life. Do the brutal, soul searching (painful I might add) inward looking. The really sleuthful examination that requires honest self reflection...You might not like what you discover. You might find worn in patterns of life draining moments, those spots in your day that suck the very life out of you. For most of us these shadowy patterns will percolate quickly to our awareness...

Life stealing, familiar habits we circle back to again and again that we can't seem to shake.

Skewed ways of thinking that tarnish the lens we view life through.

Negative voices, be it external or internal, that keep us from living freely.

 The wrong sacrifices we've made along the way.

The lack of attention to those people and things that need attending.

Trading money making for time, when we know time is the commodity that we can't replenish.

And then, there are those that inspire us. That seem to rise above the suburbia white noise and emerge as life champions. Those lucky ones that are born with life hack genes, or perhaps they have developed highly acute life hack skills over the long Road of Experience. (Is it nature, nurture or a combo of both that create these inspirational people?)

They come from all walks of life.  Sometimes it just the dad next door that has his act together. A high school student with an extraordinary passion for helping others.

 Or the 31 year old, NYC journalist that traded in her Big Apple Dream for Crystal Clear Caribbean Clarity. Meet Yale Grad, Noelle Hancock, a successful writer that gave up her $95,000 a year career for scooping ice cream in the Caribbean.  You can read about her surf and sand adventures here--->

New York Journalist Gives Up $95,000 Job to Scoop Ice Cream On a Tropical Island 
Of course, there is not a perfect formula that creates these inspirational people, but there are certainly some common threads that run through the lives of those that inspire.




My mom, Debbie Sinopoli Regan, possessed these sought after, yet eulsive, attributes that transform a regular person into an (extra)ordinary, everyday Life Hack Super Hero of sorts. Not the 355K shares Superstar who goes Viral Nation, but the kind of unsung heroes that are real and present and giving back in each of our everyday lives. 

The ones that we come in contact with in our daily hustle and grind.

 If we slowed down jut a bit.

Broke bread around the table more.

Or lifted our heads up from the Almighty Screen.

We just might notice these remarkable souls and be inspired to Do Life Better ourselves.

Adam Watkins, dear friend and colleague of my mom, recognized these effervescent, "lots of flash and a little sass" qualities embodied in "Debbie." Adam compiled a "What Debbie Taught Me" list and shared it at the beautiful Memorial Celebration held by the Hattiesburg Area Realtors in my mom's honor at St. Thomas Aquinas a month to the day after we tragically lost her. These Debbie Life Hacks are worthy of sharing and imitating.




                                                                                                                     

Five Life Hacks that will leave you Doing Life Better
 1. Be a giver.

 2. Be an encourager.

 3. Be selfless.

 4. Be present.

 5. Be courageous.

Maybe packing up and relocating to The Caribbean is not the thing for you. How about getting your toes in the sand. Sharing a double scoop of ice cream with a little one. Or inviting your widowed next door neighbor to gather around your family's table this evening.

“Miss no single opportunity of making some small sacrifice, here by a smiling look, there by a kindly word; always doing the smallest right and doing it all for love.” 
― Thérèse de Lisieux, "The Little Way."