I want to build this

Sep 27, 2012 by

How awesome is this?  Someday I would love a yard full of these to convert into a huge picnic party.  You can even buy it on Amazon, but I think I’ll just build it myself.

Ben…

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TSA#45 – Visit Your Local Farmers Market

Sep 26, 2012 by

If you’ve been to your local farmers market you know how awesome they are and can skip this post.  Just please go invite some friends to go with you next time you go.

If you haven’t been to your local farmers market lately you are missing out.  They are amazing and you can support real local small business owners while getting some awesome food or hand made items.  We are fortunate enough to have several farmers markets around us during the week and on weekends.  We have several that we hit up for fresh fruit and veggies or just an awesome crepe or Belgian waffle on the weekend.  We also have a late night sunset market on Thursdays that is mostly food and stuff to buy vs fruit and veg but the food is so good it doesn’t matter.  My wife and I walk our dog through the market each Thursday and eat some awesome food while socializing with the locals and their dogs.  The blue crab burrito is to die for.

The point is farmers markets are awesome.  We complain about jobs getting sent overseas but we rarely actually take action to support small local businesses.  They don’t get any more small or local than your famers market.

Find some farmers markets near you and go.  You will find some awesome deals on fresh food or just some amazing hand made items and you will want to go back.  I promise.

I can’t wait for that blue crab burrito tomorrow.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing.

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TSA#44 – Stop Watching TV

Sep 17, 2012 by

I’m going to try really hard to not make this sound preachy, but bare with me here.  This one is important.

Stop it.  Stop wasting hours of your life every single day flipping channels from one inane show to the next.  Do yourself a HUGE favor and do anything else.

Yes I have a TV.  Yes I like watching it, but I do not have cable and I don’t flip channels.

photo by HandsettBattery

I was recently staying in a hotel up in LA and one of the fun things about hotels is that they have cable and you can flip channels.  Its a weird sensation to flip channels when you don’t have cable at home.  You miss it.  Its a fun experience of finding out what is on the next channel, but then you flip through all the channels and realize there is nothing on.  It is ridiculous how many channels there are with nothing on.  Then you flip onto the news to see what’s happening and you hear grown adults sensationalizing, twisting, spinning, and lying about absolutely nothing just to get people incensed so they will keep watching.  It was maddening and mesmerizing all at the same time.  I could not believe what I was watching, but like a train wreck I just wanted to keep watching or keep flipping to the next train wreck.  I had time to kill in the hotel and that’s exactly what I did.  Killed it.  Dead.  Gone.  Never get that hour back of my life and I’m pretty sure I’m less intelligent and less informed for having watched the news.

I flipped between CNN, FOX, MSNBC etc.  They were all the same.  Pundits on either side not answering any questions, only spouting talking points that they know people will respond to if they hear key words.  I swear this is how one exchange went down:

I think it was FOX news talking about the recent turmoil in Libya and the presidents response to it, and I’m paraphrasing here.

Pundit #1: “The President didn’t apologize or sympathize with the attackers…all he said was…”

Interrupted by pundit #2: “There are 55 million abortions every year in this country…”

No one was talking about abortion.  No one ever mentioned it.  It was ever discussed or brought up previously, but he knows that is what will rile of the feathers of those that care and they will get mad and yell at their TV’s and remember how much they hate abortions and then how much they hate the president, or the first lady, or whomever they are supposed to hate at that moment.

It was ridiculous.  But you know this.  Everyone knows this.  But we watch.

So stop it.  Stop watching the shows that you know are just pure cotton candy television.  There is no nutritional value whatsoever in there.  It is pure sugar and fluff.

You can watch TV.  There are some amazing shows on TV.  There are some great movies and documentaries to watch.  Just stop wasting your life flipping between one train wreck to the next.   Stop watching shows of stupid people just to make yourself feel better.

If you want to watch a show, pick out the show you want to watch and sit down and watch it.  When its done get up and do something else.  Don’t flip to the next thing until you’ve been in front of the TV for 4 hours.

Sorry to get preachy on this one, but think of all the things you could do with 4 more hours in your day.  Now turn off the TV and go have fun doing those things!

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing.

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TSA#43 – Write Your Story

Sep 10, 2012 by

Here comes some cliche advice, but stick with me here.

You are the author of your own story.

I’m sure you’ve heard that or something like it before.  I don’t think I made it up, but what does it really mean?

The basic cliche is that you are the sole author of your life.  You create your life.  You decide what your life is going to be like.   Of course there are extra characters that come into your story and influence it and you.  There are extraneous situations you find yourself in that effect where you go and what you do.  At the end of the day however, it is you who decides how you handle these things.  It is you who chooses how to react to things out of your control.  You continue to write your own story whether you feel like you are in control or not.

Now cliche aside, how can get something practical out of this metaphor right now.

Stuck in a rut?  Write your story.

No really, write it down.  Every day, write down what your main character did that day.  You are the main character in case you forgot.  Make it brief.  Bullet points are all that is needed here.  Write it down for 30 days and see where your story is going.  Grab a notebook or open up a Word doc and just jot it down each day. You can even use a nice little service like Oh Life to help you journal the highlights.

It may look something like this:

Monday May 3rd

  • Went to work
  • Came home and walked the dog
  • Made dinner
  • Watched TV
  • Went to bed

Tuesday May 4th

  • Went to work
  • Grabbed some food on the way home
  • Played on the internet for a few hours
  • Went to bed
Wednesday May 5th
  • Went to work
  • Went out to dinner
  • Watched a stupid movie with friends
  • Went to bed
You get the idea.  Now after 30 days, review the script of your life.   Is it what you want to be doing?  Are you living the life you want to be living?  Are you shocked at the repetitive nature of your routine?  Are you creating the life you want?  Would you even read your life story?
Hopefully the answer is yes, but I’ve given some monotonous examples for a reason.  Sometimes we get so caught up in the routine, that the routine becomes invisible and we don’t see it.  We can’t see it.  The routine is what we are calling a life.  We get up, we do A, then B, then come home and do C and D and we go to bed to rinse and repeat tomorrow.

Now here comes the twist and how we fix the rut.

Write your new story.  I don’t mean go out and automatically just live the life of your dreams, but if you can do that, then yes, do that.  I mean write down your new story.  Take a new piece of paper and write down what you want to do.  Write down some things you think would be fun to try or accomplish.  Write down some places you want to go.  Write down some new activities you think you might enjoy to replace some of the boring routine ones on your list.  Write down what your days should look like and then start living off that list.  Start crossing those things off as you do them and keep adding new ones onto the list.  Call it a bucket list, call it a wish list, call it whatever you want, but seriously spend some time thinking about the things you want to accomplish and the things you want to do, and the places you want to go and the experiences you want to have.  Then just start doing them.
Some of the items may be big huge plans or ideas that may takes some planning, so start taking bite size chunks off of those ideas and work toward them.  Some right require a simple Google search to find when you could take that next white water rafting trip.  Make plans.  Come up with ideas.  Write yourself a new story and go make it happen.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing.

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TSA#42 – Live Like You’re Camping

Sep 5, 2012 by

I love camping and I realized something on this last trip.

We should live every day like we are camping.

When you are camping, life is simple.   You get up when the sun is up and you go to bed when its dark, or when you run out of firewood.

You have only what you need and nothing more.  If you don’t have something you need, someone will always share theirs.

You’re meals are all prepared together with others helping out where they are needed.  You get to sit together around a picnic table or campfire and enjoy each others company and some amazing home made food.

Everyone you encounter is friendly and says hello when you stroll through camp.  A campfire is always a welcoming place for new friends.

Kids and adults alike can make a new friend with a new neighbor within a matter of minutes and it is perfectly OK to sit around half the day and just be.  Nowhere to rush off to, and no pressing to-do list waiting for you; you are allowed to sit and be still with friends and family.  That is a wonderful thing.

I hope you got to go camping over Labor Day weekend.  If not I hope you have a trip planned soon so you can experience the simple joy of camping.

Your TSA this week is to bring a little bit of that simple life of camping home and live it each day.

Ben…

TSA = Truly Simple Actions The goal of the TSA project is to improve your life and help make this world a better place, one simple action at a time.  Take time this week to do this one simple thing.

Previous TSA’s:

 
 
 

 

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