Getting Shit Done

The Importance of Maintenance

Bookmarked Art of Managing Yourself: Things I’ve Learned by Yina HuangYina Huang (

If there is one fundamental principle I live by, it is to remember the second law of thermodynamics: that everything is subject to entropy and decay.
In less intense terms, it literally means everything is falling apart slowly.

The 5 Principles of Self-Management:

  1. Actively manage these four things: physical items, digital items, thoughts, and time.
  2. Focus on systems and routine to automate recurring tasks.
  3. Treat yourself like your own CEO.
  4. Beyond organizing your digital and physical items, it’s important to organize your mind.
  5. Nothing is forever, the key is maintenance, maintenance, maintenance.

The “organize your mind” step is part of why I have this mind garden!

I’ve found that ensuring these four are organized is one of the best ways to minimize stress and anxiety:

  • Physical items
  • Digital items
  • Thoughts
  • Time

Using the analogy of a business, what are the key categories in your life that you need to consistently maintain? For ex: Physical Health? Financials? Relationships? Personal Growth?

By Tracy Durnell

Writer and designer in the Seattle area. Freelance sustainability consultant. Reach me at She/her.

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