John Pavlus, writing back in 2010 when the Lifehacking thing was still really popular:
[I]t’s just plain easier to tinker and tweak something you assume you’re stuck with, for better or worse, than it is to design something better from scratch. It’s less tiring. It’s less frustrating. It’s less frightening. It takes less commitment. There aren’t any unknown unknowns. The failures are less painful and the successes are more frequent.
A bike strengthens the person who pedals it. Open-source software educates its potential contributors. A hallmark of cyclical tools is that they create open loops: the bike strengthens its rider to do things other than just pedal the bike. Cyclical tools are like trees, whose falling leaves fertilize the soil in which they grow.