Hacks and Life-hacks.


By David Joel Miller, MS, Licensed Therapist & Licensed Counselor.

Is this a hack?
Photo courtesy of Pixabay.com

The meaning of “Hack” has changed.

One of my younger colleagues was talking to me about the desirability of “hacks.” This word like so many others has changed its meaning, not because the dictionaries had it wrong, but because people started using the word differently, and then the dictionaries are having to change their definitions to keep up with the way people use the word.

As an old guy, this changing my vocabulary and changing my metaphors so as to be understandable to the younger generation is a challenge. Mentions of Milton Berle get mostly dumb stares these days. The word hack, for me, is especially challenging.

I am familiar with Lifehacking sites, I even subscribe to their email. It is just that I had no idea how many other areas of life were getting hacked these days.

Hack used to be something else.

Hacks used to be cabs you called to take you somewhere. In that sense, I can see the use of the term life hack. These little tips are meant to help you get from where you are to somewhere else, quickly or more easily.

A “Hack” also used to be someone who did things in an unprofessional or half-hearted way. Calling a journalist a “hack” as in writing an uninformed or factually incorrect story was one of the worst things you could say about a member of the third estate. Hack writers were thought of as being unoriginal and mediocre. In that sense, I would not want a hack writing my life hacks.

There is also hacking into computers, as in unauthorized entry and hacking things up with an ax, neither of which seems to be related to those other definitions of hack.

Today Hacks, life or otherwise, have become accepted as short, useful ways to do things better, faster, and more easily. In an era when there is far more skimming than reading going on via the internet, using hacks makes sense. Skimming used to be a bad thing as in taking money out of the till which involved stealing or cheating on your taxes, but today skimming is grabbing the cream off the top of the article without reading every word. See the old guy is catching on.

Henceforth counselorssoapbox.com will be embracing Hacks, – sometimes.

As we look more at how to improve life, wellness, and recovery, and less at diseases and disorders, looks like Hacks have their place. It also appears that a number of the posts on counselorssoapbox.com in the past were in fact “hacks.” How to improve your memory, how to be happy, and so on.  I would also include recovery tips in this category. So life hacks will now get their own category.

What about relationship hacks?

Not sure. Some of you youngsters need to let me know how far this hack thing should extend. Do we need friend hacks, memory hacks, etc or can we just lump them all together as life hacks? For now, just an added link to the posts that feature hacks, and you can sort through them or look in the other categories for hacks.

Here is the link to the counselorssoapbox.com life hacks.

Staying connected with David Joel Miller

Seven David Joel Miller Books are available now!

My newest book is now available. It was my opportunity to try on a new genre. I’ve been working on this book for several years, but now seem like the right time to publish it.

Story Bureau.

Story Bureau is a thrilling Dystopian Post-Apocalyptic adventure in the Surviving the Apocalypse series.

Baldwin struggles to survive life in a post-apocalyptic world where the government controls everything.

As society collapses and his family gets plunged into poverty, Baldwin takes a job in the capital city, working for a government agency called the Story Bureau. He discovers the Story Bureau is not a benign news outlet but a sinister government plot to manipulate society.

Bumps on the Road of Life. Whether you struggle with anxiety, depression, low motivation, or addiction, you can recover. Bumps on the Road of Life is the story of how people get off track and how to get your life out of the ditch.

Dark Family Secrets: Doris wants to get her life back, but small-town prejudice could shatter her dreams.

Casino Robbery Arthur Mitchell escapes the trauma of watching his girlfriend die. But the killers know he’s a witness and want him dead.

Planned Accidents  The second Arthur Mitchell and Plutus mystery.

Letters from the Dead: The third in the Arthur Mitchell mystery series.

What would you do if you found a letter to a detective describing a crime and you knew the writer and detective were dead, and you could be next?

Sasquatch. Three things about us, you should know. One, we have seen the past. Two, we’re trapped there. Three, I don’t know if we’ll ever get back to our own time.

For these and my upcoming books; please visit my Author Page – David Joel Miller

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For videos, see: Counselorssoapbox YouTube Video Channel

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