Self Improvement


The way we organize our tabs is to blame for the problem of tab overload. Having multiple windows open at the same time has now outlived its usefulness.

A better option is to group them as ‘tasks’ and arrange them organically, with the related tabs simply showing as a task. This helps reduce the clutter and keeps the eye on the ball, making us more productive.

Luciana Owain (@luciow) - Profile Photo



Self Improvement

Browser Tabs: An Outdated Browsing Habit

Browser tabs, introduced in the early 2000s, are widely used but are now being considered an outdated concept that may hinder our productivity.

They are now seen as a manifestation of our cluttered mind and the work that is pending, bleakly staring at us. Browser tabs increase anxiety, divide our attention and crash our machines when overloaded to the hilt.

Urban life has eradicated the feelings of being together in a connected way, making things on your own, doing everything by yourself. One never thought of slowing down and having meaningful experiences in the constant ‘rush hour’ life we are used to.

Cottagecore puts forward the old ways of community living, doing everything by hand, be it milking cows, sewing, gardening or craftwork.

The appeal of Cottagecore is the desire for moving away from the modern, fast-paced city life and towards simplicity and tranquillity. The symbols used to describe Cottagecore, flowers, bees, mushrooms, leaves and bees, indicate that there is a longing for a Disney movie-like paradise, full of wonder and magic.

Cottagecore is a repackaging of the trend of the 60s and 70s: Homesteading, a lifestyle based on living in self-sufficiency in a village, growing crops and enjoying the country life.

Cottagecore: The Standout Trend

Since the start of the lockdowns, a new trend started in social media feeds: People enjoying the beautiful, calm village life in cosy cottages, wooden pathways, and beautiful picnic-friendly gardens that contrasted with the horrors of the pandemic.

It was a surreal, escapist fantasy turned standout aesthetic of the turbulent year, that gave birth to a new hashtag: #Cottagecore. Taylor Swift swiftly embraced the trend with her new album Folklore, which carried a raw, escapist, earthy and nostalgic sound.

Cottagecore, pushed into the mainstream by celebrities and social media in 2020, is in essence about living at a slow pace in country houses, where wildflowers, rivers and farm animals surround us. It is about being cosy with nature, growing our own crops, being with pets and picnicking in the woods.

The trend made staying alone at home an aspirational activity, where one can enjoy solitude, creativity and the affection of pets.

Success is inevitable if a system is followed daily. It is the sum of small efforts, repeated every day.

One can start small, by learning five new words every day in a language we want to master or even writing five sentences in your journal. Keep it regular, and see the magic of compounding.

Taking five mandatory actions, however small, on a regular basis makes for a routine that has nowhere else to go but eventual success, provided the action is a system practised daily, just like saving up 5 dollars every day no matter what.

Example: Calling up five clients every day. Creating five meetings or virtual appointments, writing five pages of your book, calling and following up with five recruiters to find you a job.

Achieve Goals Faster: The Rule Of Five
  • While starting out to accomplish a goal, we feel overwhelmed with the abundance of advice and information, creating an analysis paralysis.
  • Inaction and decision fatigue ensues, as we lose track of where to begin.
  • The Rule Of Five is a remedy to this problem. It is a commitment to take five daily actions (also called systems) to move quickly towards one’s goal.

Loneliness requires two thing:

  1. A lack of meaning in one's relationships
  2. A sense of the self as separate from others

In pre-modern society, religion gave meaning to all existence. God was always there. But modernity brought uncertainty. Scientific medicine questioned the certainty of the soul, urbanisation disrupted traditional communities, and existential philosophy searched for meaning without God. In this context, loneliness was invented and maintained by neoliberal policies.

When we consider this emotion a product of history, rather than an automatic biological response, we can find more nuanced solutions to loneliness.

Loneliness is not a single emotion. It contains emotional states such as anger, sadness, jealousy, resentment, grief, and hope. Structural loneliness caused by poverty, infirmity, disability and illness is different from existential loneliness where a person is yearning for others. This means that tailored interventions are vital.

Loneliness is a historically specific condition

Loneliness has become a "plague," and "epidemic" that strikes young and old. But loneliness is not a universal human condition. It is a historically specific one.

Before 1800, the word loneliness was not really used in the English language. Where it was used, it meant the same as oneliness - the state of being one or single. Trees were lonely; roads were lonely. Before the 19th century, people did live alone, but they weren't lonely.

Martin Seligman

"When you remove depression from a person, you aren't left with a happy person...you're left with an empty person...sometimes people need to learn what BEING WELL is."

Some tools Martin Seligman​ suggests are:

  • Sending a letter of gratitude to someone.
  • Intentionally use one of your strengths daily in an unusual way. For example, if your strength is hope and optimism, you could volunteer to teach or mentor.
  • Physical exercise, such as a walk or run.
  • Self-improvement through reading or taking a course.
  • Creativity - composing, art, dance crafts.
  • Focusing on friendships that energise you.
  • Reframing - choosing not to see things as 'good' or 'bad' but 'effective' or ineffective.'
  • Healthy substitutions you love within in easy reach.
  • Keeping positive pictures easily accessible.
  • Self-compassion - doing things that makes you feel warm and fuzzy, such as a bubble bath or a cup of tea.

To flourish is not to "learn to manage."

It is to live daily in a state where you are able to really appreciate, celebrate, and value your accomplishments; where you know you have the inner strength and resilience to survive a crisis, rebuild when exhausted and still thrive.

The act of "Being Well" (not "wellbeing") involves the five elements of "PERMA".

  • Positive Emotion
  • Engagement
  • Relationships
  • Meaning
  • Achievement

Learning these state shifts in addition to conventional tools to do well will help you feel great when objectively you may already be great.

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