'Stuff' Editing - Are You Doing It?

'Stuff' Editing - Are You Doing It?

I watched this great TED Talk by Graham Hill titled Less Stuff, More Happiness’. He spoke about ‘editing’ your life to make room for the good stuff.

Graham relates it largely to possessions and living space. In it he’s sitting on a box and tells his audience although he has no idea what’s in it he’s moved it from house to house for years… I’m sure you can relate to that. I know I can. I still have university essays, a box full of gift cards dating since forever, and a bag of old dresses that my grandma gave me. They don’t fit me but I just can’t bear to get rid of them.

Less is More

He also asks you to remember when you were most happy… Perhaps when you were camping, travelling or back in college? These are times when we have only what we need… which isn’t much. I’ve had some great travel adventures, when all I had was a backpack and whatever I could fit in it. And many happy memories of simple pleasures… Playing cards by candlelight, yoga on a beach at sunrise, reading in a hammock, writing on a bus. Even washing clothes in a cement shower in Africa is a vividly happy memory. As is hanging them on a little elastic travel clothesline above my bed.

So this concept of an Edited Life got me thinking about the ‘stuff’ in our businesses, and particularly, from my point of view as a writer and editor our word ‘stuff’.

It’s pretty much passé to tell you we live in a time of Information Overload. The amount of information we take in on a daily basis has gone up five times in the last 20 years, and no wonder... According to The Telegraph “Everyday the average person produces six newspapers worth of information through email, twitter, social networking sites and text messages.” Isn’t that just a little bit crazy?!

Cyber Stuff and Internet Garbage

The ‘stuff’ that Graham refers to is physical possessions. But what about cyber ‘stuff’ and Internet garbage? Right now you are reading this article online. You most likely came here via Facebook, Twitter or perhaps through my email list. I could also have used Google+, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Digg, YouTube, Vimeo, reddit, StumbleUpon, Wordpress, Blogger, MySpace etcetera, etcetera… Argh, so much ‘stuff’!

Are you exhausted by the sheer job of visualising all this information? I am. So how do we cope with all this? How do we make it work for us? Make it a help, rather than a hindrance to our businesses, and achieve our end goals?

The answer is EDITING.

Edit your life, edit your marketing activities, edit your social media and other online activities and of course edit the words you use. Graham advises “edit ruthlessly, clear the arteries of life". Why? So you’ve got time and space for the good stuff.

I love words, and I can easily stream them constantly. But, to what end? I would rather have more time with my children, dinners with friends, my arms around someone special, my hands in the earth, my feet on the sand and the wind in my hair.

Here’s to an edited life and the joy of less.

>>> Leonie Orton is a writer, editor and marketing communications consultant. She'll create communication mediums in the shape of words, graphics and webs for your business, connecting you with the people who need you. Get in touch by emailfacebook or twitter. And if you're not already signed up for new writings and special offers, get hooked up here

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