What is a LifeHacker?
How To Do Everything Better

What does being a Lifehacker mean?

I often call myself a ‘Lifehacker’, and when people ask me the all too-lackadaisical question ‘so, what do you do’ I never say ‘Lifehacker’

Why?  Because it’s not really a ‘thing’ – it’s a very general word these days, often meaning a combination of: clean eater, gym rat, occasional book reader, white hat hacker and crafty artisan all rolled up into one.

So let me try to explain why I’m a Lifehacker.

To me, a Lifehacker is all those things, and more, but not for the same reasons.  To hack life is to take apart what, you are or do and rebuild it to make it better; to take the basic necessities of life, the tenants of routine and  rebuild them to make a life greater than great – to make every day amazing.

define: lifehack

To many, this means not working a 9-5 job, or being self-employed.  To others, it’s about learning as much as possible.  Those are parts of it, for sure, but to really analyze, you have to break it way down.

I have a tendency to taking things apart to their most basic levels and start from there and build up.  I then make a list, an outline, a rubric, and decide how to proceed.

It’s a roadmap to life.

good, cause we all get lost.

So lets break it down:

The most basic, central tenants or aspects of life are

  • Relationships – Family, friends, colleagues, mentors
  • Health – fitness, medical, well-being, food,
  • Spiritual – religion, culture, beliefs, meditation, personal development
  • Recreation – hobbies, sports, activities, travel, charity, interests
  • Financial – income, investment, budget
  • Work – career, jobs
  • Education – study, school, learning, personal development
  • Home – living, house, location, property,renovations,building

I believe all of these things are alterable, malleable, hackable even.  They can be changed if you try (such as hitting the gym for better fitness), if you read more (learning new things from books) or just by thinking and analyzing oneself (understanding why have past relationships failed, realizing why you eat the way you do, and how to eat better, why you were unable/unwilling to get a better education and then going )

You can understand anything if you try.

And if you understanding the how, and the why, you can change anything.  Everything is changeable, and if you believe that, everything is achievable.

It would be tedious, hard, and insurmountable to change everything at once.  Rome wasn’t built in a day, of course.  So we must decide on a priority for change.  Enter Maslow:

In 1943, Abraham Maslow proposed the theory he calls Maslow’s hierarchy of needs’.  It’s a theory laying out the needs of people based on stages of psychological development in a pyramid.  One cannot ascend higher up the pyramid without passing each stage in turn.  The most basic physiological needs, such as eating and shelter are at the bottom, with the most complex and abstract at the top, such as self-actualization and trancendancy.


like always, we start at the beginning

Richard James Lee is a Canadian-born Writer, Chef and Entrepreneur. He is the Editor in Chief of Ions and Chef of Kayak SmokeHouse in Toronto. His Printed Works include Dark City Streets and White.