Learn to Declusterfuck


Attention is a limited commodity — huh? what?!

Attention is a limited commodity — boring??! what’s next?

If you’ve been paying attention, attention is a limited commodity. Our short-term memories can only re-member so much. Simplifying the amount of members to re-member seems imperative if we want to live a more attentive life.

This means discipline. A very particular kind of discipline.

In the writings and lifestyle of “maverick social critic” Ivan Illich he uses the term Askesis to describe this discipline. But that word is old as shit and kind of pretentious, so why not use a far less respectable and far more entertaining word: Delusterfuck. 

Clusterfucks are huge, frazzled webs of connections that expend enormous amounts of energy yet do relatively little. All the spurious little strands in the spider web that add little strength to the shape as a whole.

To Declusterfuck means to trim away all the brittle strands that take energy to create but don’t create anything worth the energy it takes to make. The goal in this process is to increase the strength of the web as a whole.

To do this we need to Discern (the 80/20 rule) what is useful and what is useless and then try as much as possible to Refuse the useless. Now that seems useful.

These two things often work best within a certain state of mind, so paying attention (it’s a limited commodity you know) to maintaining beneficial states of mind is essential. This means developing some type of “centering practice.”

Two immediate ones that come to mind: meditation and journaling.

The former can develop the ability to be more aware and the latter promotes clear thinking. Mix them like salad or paint and paint a salad (but don’t eat it).