You can do anything, just don’t try to do everything.


I think it's a common truth to many of us that we take too much on in our lives and then feel stressed when we can't accomplish every last item on a list. I recently read a great article on the anxiety of beating online reading lists (and even though that might not be too common) it turned into an explanation on appreciating what we have and enjoying as much of our everyday as we can.

The article is mainly about how to just let go of trying to read every great article and story out there and just focus on picking and choosing what you will enjoy and grow from, but it quickly turns into something so much more. You can find the article here at the Zenhabits blog.

Towards the end of the article the writer describes a theory called the River Flow Philosophy. They go on to say:

If life is a river, and all the information out there (including blogs, social media, etc.) makes up the water, as well as all the possible experiences in the world … imagine trying to consume the entire river. Consuming an entire river is obviously impossible for one person, and no one would ever try.

Trying to consume all information and get all experiences in life is like trying to consume the entire river. Impossible.


It may seem overwhelming, daunting even to think we have to try to experience everything. It may be overwhelming enough to cause us to waste time trying. Even trying to pick out just the best parts is a waste of time if it doesn't prove beneficial immediately. You want to try to taste just the best parts? Just sample the finest water, the finest writing, the finest film, music, food and travel? You want to write but spend too much time reading on how to write? You want to travel but spend too much time working to save up for far away trips when there could be locations close to where you live just as amazing? You want to read but spend time searching to see what is the next bestseller, next must read, next top 10 list? We can do anything, unfortunately most of us begin to try to do everything which ends up derailing us.

We can do anything, I believe it. If you set your mind to it and dedicate yourself to it you can accomplish it.

You could also quickly waste a lifetime searching and never really enjoying all that is around you. Imagine if instead of searching and killing yourself trying to manage all of the intricate pieces of events and life happening all around us we choose to:

Notice the futility of all of this activity. Now imagine that you let go of the goal of tasting all the best drops of water, which isn’t a necessary thing at all.

What might you do instead? Try the drop of water flowing towards you at this moment, and enjoy it. It might not be the best drop of water in the river, but who is to say? Maybe it is. Maybe if you love that drop fully, it will be the best, regardless of how good other drops are.

Enjoy the post or article you do read, and don’t worry about the rest.

Enjoy the experiences you have, and forget about those you don’t experience.

Have fun with the people you’re with, and don’t worry about who you’re missing.

Life is a flowing river, and worrying about every drop is futile. The water you’re in now is the best.


It seems like such an easy thing to do, such an easy thing to say. True, it also seems to demand it's truth.

Hope all of you out there are enjoying your life and experiencing it to the fullest regardless of where we are at. Remember that you can do anything you put your mind to, the trick is putting your mind to it and following through.

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