the thing I might want least right now


that's what I don't want right now.

I think that if I took all the tips that are foisted on me, I could easily spend 26 hours of every day improving my life in small baby steps. And also driving myself insane. Seriously though: have you ever thought about it? One site tells you how to get whiter teeth with just 15 minutes a week. Another encourages you to increase your vocabulary in only 5 minutes a day! Then the magazine in the grocery store is promoting gratefulness: take just 20 minutes sometime this week to write a few thank you notes. That's all. Just 20 minutes. Oh, but did I mention that you should also be getting firmer abs in only 8 moves every morning? And that if you want to get your finances in order, just a one-time investment of a couple hours plus an hour a week is all you need? You could be squeezing in leg lifts during conference calls at work, too. And decluttering your closet in three simple sessions.

And all of these tips just made me more aware of how you simply cannot solve all of the world's problems in 5 easy steps or 20 minutes a week. Things are complex. And sometimes that means that you can't just boil it down and try a few "tips." Maybe they need to be completely re-examined and explored in long, ongoing dialogue. I subscribe to a newsletter on preaching and they love love love to bring up a different preaching problem every week and pretend to solve it in a single newsletter with a sidebar containing, well, more tips. I hate it.

Are we allergic to the idea of hard work?

And today at the gym was a magazine announcing in big blue letters: 1,432 tips Smart new health, fitness, nutrition, beauty & sex tips! Are you kidding me?!