There are many short-cuts and habits that people develop to make life easier and better for themselves. The following list might be more appropriately called “lazy things that smart people do”, but I’m going to list them here anyway!
- Establish routines. Routine makes space for spontaneity. This means eliminating or reducing the number of small decisions of lesser importance, so that you have more time and energy for bigger decisions, particularly in the face of uncertainty. Routines could range from wearing the same type of outfit to maintaining set working hours to eating the same thing for lunch everyday, thereby reducing .
- Establish a set of guiding principles, almost like a personal and professional operations manual, to reduce the level of one-off decision-making and reduce the risk of repeating mistakes in the future. This is also reflected in Ray Dalio’s , which has recently attracted new attention having been published in book form in September 2017. In a way, was a first cut at my own principles for simplifying the impact investing decision-making process.
- Have a uniform. You’ve heard and seen this — ranging from Mark Zuckerburg’s grey t-shirt and hoodie to Steve Jobs’ black turtleneck. But this can also mean, outfit formulas like suits or color palettes (always black or always neutrals or something else). For me, it’s translated into wearing the same earrings day in and day out (I have a vast earring collection from years past that no longer gets worn) and treggings (a consequence of being an active, working parent, not only are they comfortable yet still look professional, I discovered that zippers on trousers are a waste of time).
I have always been the type of person who preferred to do “enough” for a successful and satisfying outcome. Being “too lazy” to do more than was necessary certainly yielded useful short cuts, that then helped create more time — or rather helps me prioritize my time — for the things I love to do and enjoy the most.