About Focus and Simplicity
Focus and Simplicity is a newsletter that helps you thrive in a distracting and overwhelming world where it seems that money, possessions, and status in society are all that matters.
I share tactics on how to stay focused on what matters when everything is pulling your attention. I offer my advice on how to avoid getting sucked into status games that make everyone miserable, and where to find fulfillment instead. I discuss personal finance, with the end goal of maximum happiness—not maximum wealth.
Whatever I write about, my ultimate goal is always to make you feel more content with life.
You’ll get emails once or twice every week. Sometimes less frequently.
For me, writing Focus and Simplicity is the natural next step from The Minimalist Wardrobe, which I founded in 2017. A simple wardrobe is only one small part of my life philosophy. This newsletter goes beyond wardrobes.
My core philosophy is to optimize life for happiness, but that wasn’t always the case. I’m highly driven and competitive by nature, and for years my big goal in life was to be successful in materialistic terms. I wanted to be a billionaire and never stopped to think about why. I just did.
I never became a billionaire with a B, but I made enough to understand that money and expensive stuff can only take you so far in terms of happiness.
Don’t get me wrong. Money has had a significant effect on my quality of life—we didn’t have much when growing up—my point is that I didn’t need a lot of it to get most of the benefits.
Sure, my life would be different if a billion dollars were to fall in my lap, but I don’t believe I’d be significantly happier than now. I’m confident the lifestyle and sacrifices needed to become mega-rich aren’t even close to being worth it if the goal in life is to maximize happiness.
Upon realizing how little money and stuff I needed to live my optimal life, I refocused my attention on things that had a more significant effect on my well-being.
I simplified as many aspects of my life as possible to minimize worrying. I shifted my career to something more fulfilling, even though it meant less money. I put more effort into my health and my relationships, even though that was time away from work. I worked on my inner self to be more grateful and appreciative of simple everyday things rather than being anxious all the time and letting life fly by.
The result was what I was hoping for: a much happier and calmer me. My productivity and creativity skyrocketed, too, so not only did I feel better, I performed better in my work. Ironically enough, I improved at what used to matter the most to me by not caring as much anymore.
Shifting my mindset wasn’t effortless, though, and nothing came overnight. After years of admiring nothing but the hustle culture—which most of our society does too—it was easy to fall back to the mindset of “money and status over everything.”
I still need the occasional reminders, so I write for myself as much as for others.