Archive for the ‘Mindset’ Category

Anchor

In my quest to explore new media, I have downloaded and posted to Anchor. Anchor is a social audio service that acts as a radio. It will even take what you’ve posted as audio and automatically create a podcast for you.

The audio length is 5 minutes, which is plenty for a radio format. I am going to post daily and my theme is ten ideas per day. That’s it. It’s based on the book Become an Idea Machine by Claudia Azula Altucher.

If you can come up with ten ideas per day, every day, you will strengthen your “idea muscle” making it possible for you to accomplish anything you want, get out of or into any circumstances you can think of. Read On…

Activation Energy

With a long to-do list, it can seem daunting to begin working on any one task. We often make our to-do lists known by posting them on our family whiteboard in the kitchen. Sometimes I overestimate what I can physically accomplish in one day. But what really helps me is to know that each task comes with a resistance to get started.

In chemistry, it is the activation energy required to begin a chemical reaction. It’s usually a spike in energy required at the beginning, and then the reaction carries on itself with little or no added energy. Just beginning your day requires activation energy – getting out of bed (higher energy) vs hitting snooze (low energy).  Read On…

Complete exhaustion

Most days recently, when I get to the end of the day, I collapse in a state of exhaustion. It’s not a bad thing. It means I’ve spent all my energy for the day and I have nothing more to give. Usually, it means I had an incredible day. 

The most energy-drain comes from being home. Work can be a lot easier mentally than being home, but I love being home. The kids are awesome to watch and play with. I just need to remember that when I’m completely spent, I can get short with them. The five second time has helped me not react in anger per my initial impulse.

5 Second Rule

I just started Mel Robbin’s book 5 Second Rule and I am enjoying it. It teaches the impossibly simple, but weirdly effective 5 Second Rule, where you count backwards from 5 whenever you want to begin doing something you don’t have the motivation to do. The most common example being to get out of bed when the alarm rings and not hit the snooze button.

When I tell other people about this, it seems like, how can that be an entire book? It’s true – I feel like it might have a bit of fluff. It might have sufficed as a really solid article. But, it might not carry as much weight as an article. People may tend to shrug it off if it had just been 1000 words on a blog somewhere.  Read On…

13 Personal Rules

One of the most valuable tips I’ve gotten from Craig Ballantyne (among many) is to create your set of personal rules.  It’s freeing to make some decisions for yourself ahead of time, decide what you will and won’t do, so that you can use your brainpower on more important things.

Craig’s rules govern a lot about how he goes about his day and how he creates content. Those rules work for him. I followed his example and wrote my own rules. I think mine are bit more generic, save a few, but they resonate with me and make me happy.

Here are my 13 personal rules: Read On…

30 Day Challenges

I have always liked the idea of improving myself, setting goals and reaching them and seeing what potential lies inside of me. But I don’t know if others have that same curiosity. I think there’s doubt in peoples’ confidence of their ability to change permanently and therefore they don’t want to waste the effort.

That’s where 30 day challenges come in. They make it all a game. There’s no long term commitment – you only have to try for 30 days. What’s 30 days in the course of your life (especially if it can possibly change it forever)?

This comes from my experience with Lent. I gave up coffee for Lent, which was the hardest thing I’ve ever given up. I felt awful for a few days, dazed for few weeks and finally felt better after about 2 weeks without my daily coffee. Now, Lent is long over and I don’t drink daily coffee. I have it occasionally and when the mood strikes, but not daily. I don’t want to return to that dependence and those flu-like symptoms if I don’t have it.

Would I ever have tried to go without coffee if not for the “safe space” that Lent provides? Probably not. I want that experience year-round. I’ve given up other things in my life and sometimes they come back and sometimes they stay out. I have given up all animal products, TV, facebook and alcohol as examples. Animal products are still out, but TV, facebook and alcohol are back, but in a much reduced capacity. And that’s the beauty! Kicking something out of your life and going without helps you to reset your level and realize just how much you might be overindulging so that when you take it back in, you can adjust it way down as you see fit. Read On…

80,000 Hours

After writing yesterday about how to quantify changing the world, by a weird twist of fate, I stumbled upon Tim Ferriss’s interview with Will MacAskill. He started a non-profit called 80,000 hours. The premise is that each us has 80,000 hours to give in the duration of our careers – 40 years x 50 weeks x 40 hours = 80,000 hours. What are you going to do with yours? What kind of impact will you have?

I bought the kindle book and read it immediately. There is a ton of good information inside, including how you can do a ton of good by just ‘earning to give’, which means, stay in your job and just donate to the most effective, life-changing charities you can find (he helps with that too).

You can also switch careers or build career capital. The book was really interesting. I’m really glad someone is thinking about how to research how every person can do the most good in the world. Read On…

Changing the world

What actually constitutes as changing the world? There’s got to be some line in the sand, right? I mean, painting your house red is technically changing the world, right? What criteria or measurement do you consider to say you’ve changed the world?

I think to count, you must have affected the lives of a critical mass of people. They don’t need to know they’ve been affected – plenty of people don’t have polio and have never and will never thank Jonas Salk for that.

After 50-100 years, one family of four can lead to be hundreds of people, so wouldn’t that be a critical mass of people?

I think this means that if you can positively affect change for one family and help ensure that the change has lasting effects over the next 50-100 years, you can say you’ve changed the world. Is that too far? I don’t think so. It sounds reasonable.  Read On…

Pretend

Sully loves to pretend. He gets on my back and pretends I’m a car and drives me to the grocery store to get groceries. He gets out at the store, shops and then gets back in and drives home. He gets out at home and then presents me with all of his purchases. It’s awesome.

One thing I learned from a parenting book recently is that kids don’t pretend for the sake of pretending. They are mimicking what we do. They are doing what we do, as closely as they can. They aren’t pretending for the sake of pretending.  Read On…

Running Goal

I want to run the Ann Arbor Turkey Trot 5K at 24:00 minutes. My previous best is around 26 minutes and I know I can beat it. I’ve been running around the neighborhood for 3 miles at a clip. I think I can beat it by Thanksgiving and post a decent time.

There are 150 days until Thanksgiving. I am going to beat 24:00 minutes in the Ann Arbor Turkey Trot 5K.