Advice to a Young Me

Craig Mod:

At 23 I was obsessed with minimizing recurring costs of living. They felt like poison to me.

Obsessing over minimized cost of living has a light-touch hint of Thoreau to it: the calculating, the measuring, the valuing of time.

“House: $28.12 ½; Farm one year: $14.72 ½ …” and on and on Thoreau wrote in Walden. “The cost of a thing is the amount of what I will call life which is required to be exchanged for it, immediate or in the long run.”

Cal Newport’s Digital Minimalism devotes a chapter to Thoreau. My favorite quote though is from Frédéric Gros on Thoreau’s processes: “[Thoreau] says: keep calculating, keep weighing. What exactly do I gain or lose?”