Reclaim Leisure

  • 3 Leisure lessons

      1. Prioritize demanding activity over passive consumption
      • a life well lived requires activities that serve no other purpose than the satisfaction that the activity itself generates. - Aristotle

      1. Use skills to produce valuable things in the physical world
      • “They seem to relieve him of the felt need to offer chattering interpretations of himself to vindicate his worth. He can simply points: the building stands, the car now runs, the lights are on. Boasting is what a boy does, who has no real effect in the world. But craftsmanship must reckon with the infallible judgment of reality, where one’s failures or shortcomings cannot be interpreted away.” - Matthew Crawford on craftmanship

      1. Seek activities that require real world social interactions
  • Practice: Fix or build something every day
    • The simplest way to become more handy is to learn a new skill, apply it to repair, learn, or build something, and then repeat. Start with easy projects in which you can follow step-by-step instructions more or less directly. Once comfortable, advance toward more complicated endeavors that require you to fill in some blanks or adapt what’s suggested.

  • Practice: Schedule your low-quality leisure
    • By confining your use of attention-capturing services to well-defined periods, your remaining leisure time is left protected for more substantial activities. Without access to your standard screens, the best remaining option to fill this time will be quality activities.

  • Practice: Join something
  • Practice: Follow your leisure plans
    • Without a well considered approach to your high-quality leisure, it’s easy for your commitment to these pursuits to degrade due to the friction of everyday life

    • The Seasonal Leisure Plan
      • A seasonal leisure plan is something that you put together three times a year.
      • A good seasonal plan contains two different types of items:
        • Objectives
          • Describe specific goals you want to accomplish
          • With accompanying strategies for how you will accomplish them.
        • Habits
          • Describe your behavior rules you hope to stick with throughout the season
      • Tips
        • Be specific
          • The strategies for achieving the objective should include an incentive.
          • Each of the habits describes an ongoing behavior rule. They’re not dedicated to a particular objective, but instead are designed to maintain a background commitment to regular high-quality leisure.
    • Weekly leisure plan
      • At the beginning of each week, put aside time to review your current seasonal leisure plan.
        • After processing this information, come up with a plan for how your leisure activities will fit into your schedule for the upcoming week. For each of the objectives in the seasonal plan, figure out what actions you can do during the week to make progress on these objectives, and then, crucially, schedule exactly when you’ll do these things.
      • Tips:
        • If you’re already in the habit of creating detailed plans for your week, you can just integrate your weekly leisure plan into whatever system you already use for planning.
        • When you are done with this schedule, take time to review and remind yourself of the habits included in your seasonal plan. These reminders will prevent you from forgetting these commitments in the week ahead.
        • Reflect on your experience with the habits in the week that just ended.