Over a year ago, I created a Resources page to direct people to great books and websites. At the top of my book list was the New York Times best-selling Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Achieving Financial Independence. At the time, I was a huge fan. Now I’m pleased to say I have become so much more. The History … Continue reading Working With Vicki Robin, Author of Your Money or Your Life
Much like a watershed map describes how runoff flows from mountain to ocean, a drivershed can be used to detail a vehicle’s travel path between two points. I recently saw an analysis computing driver travel times from every US county to the Great American Eclipse’s path of totality. It concluded the largest “driveshed” in the US was Interstate 95, which intersected the path of totality in … Continue reading Eclipse 2017: A Quest for Totality
I’ve long thought and written about simplicity, minimalism, and essentialism–specifically their ability to challenge my perceptions of wants, needs, and life satisfaction. From material possessions to free time, I resolved to spend the limited resources I have (time, money, energy) in a way that connects my visions with reality. These concepts have forever altered the lens through which I evaluate the world. Remaining disciplined is … Continue reading The Largest Cause of Financial Distress
If you struggle remaining disciplined with your spending, you are not alone. Many of us arrive at the beginning of the month with little to show for the previous 30 days. From my observations, budgeting simply doesn’t work for the vast majority of people. Continue reading Budget Your Savings, Not Your Spending
Greetings from Savannah, Georgia! My last correspondence came from 35,000 feet somewhere over the Pacific Ocean on my way to Manila, the capital of the Philippines. That was last October and I was in the midst of transitioning between jobs, learning things about myself, and satisfying a thirst for exploration. Since then, I’ve moved across the country, co-authored a New York Times best-selling book, and … Continue reading Back on the Map
Somewhere over the Pacific Ocean, my feet are clad in thin, mass-produced, green tea-colored slippers courtesy of EVA Air. And I love them. I never wear slippers back in the States and couldn’t even tell you the last time I owned a pair. But on my flight to Taiwan, nothing seemed more alluring than partaking in this delightful custom. For far too many flights, my feet have been held hostage to the routine familiarity of American footwear. They shall be swelled and stifled no longer. On this trip, I think I’ll try something a little more novel.
After two years of research and planning, I’m delighted to finally be writing a minimalist packing post. For me, travel packing is a complex and enjoyable optimization challenge. Volume, weight, material, functionality, and style are all taken into account when I plan a domestic or international adventure. To this end, I’ve complied my packing list and thought process below for my latest trip.
For much of this minimalism journey, I’ve been challenging the limits of material possessions–constantly evaluating what provides me a happy and modest life. For the health of myself, the planet, and my communities, I’m choosing to be more conscious of what I buy and own. To that end, I’ve moved into more appropriate spaces based on my needs. With less than one week remaining on my current lease and feeling quite lean, I took on a unique experiment. Rather than reducing my possessions, I decided to reduce the space in which I lived. After selling our final piece of furniture on Craigslist, I physically shrunk my livable space nearly 70% to a frightful 314 square feet. Continue reading “How I (Literally) Downsized My Apartment”
Feeling directionless is a common occurrence these days. Luckily I’m not absent of directions per se; I’m simply unsure of which direction to run. Perhaps direction-confused is a better way of phrasing it. Whether bred from intentionality or sudden necessity, facing these existential questions is never easy. In these moments of uncertainty, I return to my list of values–or the principles in which I’ve decided to orchestrate my life–for guidance. Crafted from a space of clarity, I recorded my values to help direct all decisions: accepting a job, starting a relationship, or purchasing a product. The goal is not rigidity, but authenticity. Continue reading “Create Your List of Core Values”
I love when small events create profound change–or the potential for it. In a short instance, previous notions are erased and rewritten with a whole new narrative. I recently experienced one of these moments while reading Jarrett Walker‘s book Human Transit: How Clearer Thinking about Public Transit Can Enrich Our Communities and Our Lives. For the first time in my professional life, I sensed a great amount of compatibility with an occupation. My engineering background, design skills, and profound passion for developing community overlap so beautifully with transit planning that I couldn’t help but gobble up each page with fervor and inspiration. Backed by decades of transportation consulting, Walker gives life to the basic principles of designing and evaluating public transportation systems. Written for the layman, Human Transit provides the reader with four fundamental considerations in which every transportation agency should ask themselves. For my own learning and with the hope of spreading his teachings, I detail Walker’s conclusions in my own words. Furthermore, I relate these four major concepts to events you may experience while using public transit. Continue reading “The Challenging Questions of Public Transit”