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Life Hacks

Six Popular Life Hacks That Are Actually Extremely Bad for You

Popular Life Hacks

Photo by Moreno Matković on Unsplash


Crocodile Dundee looks like a little aussie b*tch in comparison to this man.

The highlight of his life was when he auditioned for the role of Woody Boyd on the famous tv show “Cheers.” The role went to Woody Harrelson instead. The rejection tore apart his life.

His plan was to drink himself to death with the help of alcohol.

Then out of nowhere he discovers grizzly bears in Alaska. Each year he escapes to the wild to sleep in a tent next to all the cute, cuddly bears. One bear even went for a swim with him. (They bear-hugged afterward.)

Even though he failed to become a tv star his dream never died, although he wasn’t aware. He took a camera with him every time he stayed for months with the bears. They became his friends. They gave him a reason to live.

He made his only mission in life to protect them. One season he stayed with the bears beyond the normal season. Many left to go into hibernation. Only the truly grizzly bears stayed. Food was scarce thanks to a lack of rain. No rainfall meant no salmon.

Out of all the bears … this man hated only one.

The wild can be lonely so he brings his girlfriend along. She hates bears and keeps her distance because she thinks they are dangerous. The relationship becomes rocky and she writes in her journal that she plans to leave her boyfriend for good.

Right before she is about to leave and never return, the angry bear comes to the camp and attacks her boyfriend. He screams for her to run away and let him be eaten. She can’t stand to let her soon-to-be ex-boyfriend die.

So the bear eats both of them.

The authorities come to the camp to look for Timothy Treadwell and his girlfriend Amie Huguenard. They find and shoot the bear.

Inside the bear’s stomach they discover two whole humans. They recover a camera pointed right at the bear crime scene. The lens cover was on so there was no footage — but the audio had been recording. They play it back to hear the terrifying attack.

It’s a popular life hack to interfere in the wild to get closer to nature and heal.

Bears don’t need us to hang out with them. They need us to leave them the hell alone and stop taking over their land.

Here are a few more popular life hacks to avoid.

“If you speed read, don’t read”

Sven Schnieders recommends you don’t do it.

What’s the point of reading a book if you’re going to spoil it by skipping many of the beautiful sentences?

Books are meant to be enjoyed slowly, not sped through like a coke addict looking for a snort of angel powder.

Author Derek Sivers tells the story of a popular bike ride he liked to do. He’d normally race to complete it in 45 minutes. Never did he get time to take in all the gorgeous scenery. One afternoon he decides to take his sweet ass time.

At the end he checks his watch: 43 minutes. All of that rushing to destroy the experience and save 2 minutes.

Slow down to make books better again.

Promote yourself

Personal brand culture is a deadly online disease. It starts out as innocent. It makes sense that if you talk about yourself a lot it will build your reputation.

The risk is, you fall deeply in love with yourself.

You start thinking followers equal success. Your name accidentally becomes a brand. You pay a dude on Fiverr to make pretty little picture quotes with tag lines like, “Be busy being awesome.”

Your face ends up on everything. Friends, family, and work colleagues can’t escape your face.

When all the success reaches a Bohemian Rhapsody crescendo, you mark the occasion with a follower count celebration party. Then comes the Oscar Award speech.

I’m so proud to have hit 5-billion followers. It has been such a journey. I love each and every one of you so much.

Since I was a little girl this is all I ever wanted to do [be in front of the camera 24/7]. You’re all so precious and, did I say, gorgeous! This is our day. We’re all part of this journey.

*Vomits out last night’s avocado tacos*

Me: “Yuck. Ewww. Shut up.”

Maybe this all sounds ridiculous. It’s not, trust me. The goal to promote yourself can get out of control. There may or may not be some picture quotes from seven years ago of me falling into this same trap.

Nobody wants to hear about your awesome life. All they want is to hear what you have that can help them. Makes sense.

Slap your boss in the face next time they mention “personal brand” in relation to your career.

Live off-grid

Off-grid p*rn is all over Twitter.

A rural location is meant to be a life hack to get away from the noise. Sounds nice.

The practicality is where it all falls to pieces and dies. Part of my family lives in a rural area. Every time there is a life event to celebrate they have to drive 2.5 hours to the city and the same again to get home.

With 5 hours gone and a lot of nighttime events, they have to stay in hotels. Every year they spend thousands of dollars on gas, hotels, car repairs (that lead to more new cars), and wasted time stuck in traffic.

Near the city means near civilization — and friends.

Consider the time and financial cost to rejoin society from an off-grid location, before you fall for this popular life hack.

Take your phone everywhere

Phones are supposed to make you smart, hence the name smartphone.

When your phone is always on you for productivity and convenience reasons, it messes up your dopamine levels.

When you need a hit of dopamine you turn to your beautiful rainbow-colored slot machine in your pocket for a dose. Productivity expert Dan Koe gives us a better life hack.

Dopamine hack for people that can’t put down their phone:

– Go to your phone settings 
– Make your screen black & white
– Reduce the white point all the way

Now all of those colors designed to keep your brain hooked can’t control you.

Try it for a week, you’ll hate your phone.

Get a nice little pay rise

Bloody ripper, mate. More money equals more tacos.

A pay rise is a disaster.

George Mack explains the trap of this life hack. He calls it “The Salary Trap.” Accepting a higher salary is the worst mistake he ever made. On the outside it looks incredible to get more money.

When the new number hits your bank account your mental scoreboard goes up. Anything lower than that magic number brings an enormous amount of pain. That pain feels like loss if you ever get offered less money.

George says if a 10X career opportunity comes up but has less pay, you’ll say no to it. In the short term you keep the higher salary. In the long term you lose out on the learning that would have made you bucketloads more money.

You’re not setting money on fire. It’s more like a money slingshot, you’re taking a few steps back so you can 100X your future direction.

The solution he gives is to readjust our mental scoreboards. Rank a career opportunity based on learning opportunities, not the size of the salary. Higher learning gives you a sense of fulfillment that dollars can’t buy. Fulfillment, oddly, will likely lead to more money eventually.

Your skill stack determines how much you earn. So learning is future earning in disguise.

Final Thought

Popular life hacks are not always what they seem. As a quote I once found goes, “You get one life. Don’t screw it up by being normal.” Your library of life hacks determines how normal or unconventional your life will be.


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Tim Denning
I am an Aussie Blogger with 500M+ views — Writer for CNBC & Business Insider. Inspiring the world through Personal Development and Entrepreneurship. You may have seen my work on Medium, LinkedIn, Bitclout, or Twitter.

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