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Ask Why
Another piece of mental lint: sponging down my counters. I could be on my way to defuse a nuclear bomb, and, rushing out the door and into the president's helicopter, I will have the thought, "Dirty counters!" "The first thing to realize," says Laura Vanderkam, author of 168 Hours: You Have More Time Than You Think, "is that you don't have to do something. You have to eat and sleep, and you have to make sure your kids do the same, but beyond that, most things in life are choices. And so it may help to keep asking, 'Why am I doing this?' Maybe there's a good reason, and then you can remind yourself that it's important, but maybe there isn't." And if it's not getting you closer to the life you want, it's off the list.