Jay Shirley

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The Daily Practice

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An unexpected life hack, removing a clock.

Published: 11 Nov 2012

My stereo wouldn’t turn off when the car was turned off. This was annoying. I’ve been busy enough and my knee wouldn’t let me do any repair. I took the easy route. I simply pulled the fuse and forgot about it for the time being. In the process of troubleshooting, I disconnected the battery. This reset my clock.

I didn’t notice it until the next time I went out. I left with ample time, no big deal. I knew when I left and how much time it would take to get there. I wasn’t worried, so I didn’t bother setting the clock. This repeated several times over the next couple of days. I was surprised to learn that I enjoyed the experience of driving a little bit more.

I certainly miss having the stereo working, but I don’t drive enough to justify the time it will take to do the repair myself. Nor do I particularly want to have to take it into a shop just for this. I’m coming up close on a major service milestone, so figure I can just have them look at it. The solitude while I’m driving is a little nice, but after 30 minutes it wanes.

Now that this has been going on for a few weeks I can form a full opinion. I love the lack of a clock. If I run into traffic and run late I feel more relaxed. I don’t have a clock constantly telling me I’m running behind schedule. I don’t have a constant worry. I arrive when I will arrive.

Being punctual is an important trait for me. The clock was not helping me be punctual. It’s just one of many similar items we buy to try to make us better; instead they simply introduce stress or frustration.

The other day I heard a great comment, “Do not let your money rule you, make your money a servant.” If anything we have, whether it’s money or a material item, we should question it’s impact and effect on our lives. We acquire so much in the name of convenience and entertainment, and end up becomes slaves of fleeting desires.

I’m going to keep the clock turned off. It forces me to plan correctly and then just relax. The burden is on preparation, which is precisely where it should be.