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Hi, I’m Tom North

I’m from Manchester, UK. In 2020 I quit my job as a data analyst to start this website. Gulp 😬. You can find me on Twitter @TheTomNorth.

Before that I studied Philosophy, Politics and Economics at Oxford University 👨‍🎓, whilst also working as the Communications Director for two non-profits.

Between school and university, I worked for a tech start up 🧑🏻‍💻. The start up failed, but I learnt a lot – my boss had previously founded (and sold)

Anyway, the point is that throughout my life, I’ve always really wanted to get better at stuff. I’ve read lots, tried tonnes of things, and made plenty of mistakes. Yet I’ve never devoted time to systematically improving my life. Until now.

The point of Effective Living

Effective Living is my attempt at wading through all the books, scientific papers, podcasts, YouTube videos, newsletters, and blogs on what can make your life better – and finding the bits that actually work.

Some of it is selfish – I want to be healthier, happier, smarter, wealthier, and more productive myself. But most people also want those things. And I want to help other people benefit from what I’ve found.

I firmly believe that the vast majority of us can noticeably improve on all of these scales, without sacrificing other important things. The trouble is finding the bits of evidence-based, rigorous, logical advice in amongst the swamp of empty quotes, clichés and bullshit.

So the aim of the website is that anyone who reads the articles has the knowledge to be at least 10% healthier, smarter, wealthier, more productive and happier than they otherwise would be.

How the site is run

I publish two articles a week – on Thursdays and Sundays – on how to improve your life. The articles might cover anything from how to make your time feel longer, to why yoga is a waste of time. I also produce a weekly newsletter every Sunday which includes a bit more of what I’m reading, watching, listening to, and doing.

I kind of wish there were no such thing as advertising. So I don’t have adverts on my site. However, I do participate in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. If you click on my Amazon links and buy something, I earn a (very) small commission, but you don’t pay any extra.

I will NOT consciously change what I write just so I can include an Amazon (or other affiliate) link. However, I appreciate there’s a chance my capitalist subconscious does that for me. Over time, I hope to launch a membership community, and phase out any affiliate links.

Legal stuff


There’s nothing new under the sun. In fact, the idea of the site is (primarily) to find the best of what other people have done. So there are plenty of excerpts of things other people have made. If as a copyright holder you think that infringes on your copyright, please let me know and I’ll modify it accordingly.

Legal Disclaimer

The content contained in this blog represents only my opinions. The content herein is intended solely for the entertainment of the reader and the author and should not be relied upon in making any decisions.

Privacy Policy

You can read the privacy policy here.

The summary is that I have not, don’t, and will not sell any information you give me.

By continuing to access, link to, or use this website and/or newsletter, you accept the privacy policy in full. If you disagree with the privacy policy, you must not use the website or newsletter.

Terms of service

You can read the terms of service here.

By continuing to access, link to, or use this website and/or newsletter, you accept the terms of service in full. If you disagree with the terms of service, you must not use the website or newsletter.

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One email a week with things that will make your life a little better

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