I've made many tries at keeping a gratitude journal and my current approach, tied in with a morning habit stack, has stuck. After trying several different templates, I've found the question posed by Greg Bell to be the best for me. What is going well? Each morning I tap on Day One and it provides me a blank screen to record the answer to that question.
There is ample research that connects gratitude to feeling optimistic and having a positive outlook. With that optimism and outlook, good things tend to happen more. It is all very good, but as I was reading David Brooks "The Second Mountain" this line hit me and I read it several times before moving on.
"gratitude is a soil in which egotism tends not to grow."
That is a profound, and I suspect, true. So while that gratitude journal may help with your outlook and optimism, it also tempers the ego and self. It can keep you in check, as you reflect on all the goodness around you. How about that? Now there is an entire other dimension of benefit from that simple question. So, what is going well?
"Your outcomes are a lagging measure of your habits. Your net worth is a lagging measure of your financial habits. Your weight is a lagging measure of your eating habits. Your knowledge is a lagging measure of your learning habits. Your clutter is a lagging measure of your cleaning habits. You get what you repeat." - James Clear. Atomic Habits
Tetris is my favorite video game, still to this day. I liked it so much that Tammy and I had a shower tiled in Tetris. My favorite Tetris implementation these days is Tetris 99 on the Nintendo Switch, playing in Marathon mode. The controls are great, and the visuals are simple and don't get in the way of the game play.
However, I’m not the kind of Tetris-savant that is described in this article.
Hong was stunned to learn that his strategy of scoring Tetrises by dropping long bars into a left-side gap was suboptimal. Due to piece-flipping mechanics, a right-side gap was superior.
There is Chess like strategy in Tetris, but you have to do it in an instant.
When Joseph won the tournament again, in 2019, he inspired more young players. In 2020 alone, a hundred and thirty-one players maxed out; between 1990 and 2019, eighty-seven players had maxed out. Kids had killed the Tetris curve.
Personally when I play Tetris after a while my eyes start to burn because I don't blink, and your mind leaves normal space and you just see the tiles flipping and falling. Until the end. And then you just want to play again. 🕹
Reading: I’ve started reading The Horse, the Wheel, and Language: How Bronze-Age Riders from the Eurasian Steppes Shaped the Modern World. It has me a bit intimidated by it’s depth and length at the moment, but I’m digging in! 🤞
I found this week lacking any inspiration for a creative photo. I’m sure that is more a reflection on me than my environment, but I’m going back to this image from the interior of Iceland for this weeks photo. I love the lines in the landscape and the snow capped mountain peaking over.
I’m cooking up a new project that the whole family is going to be involved with. If you'd like to get a quarterly newsletter all about books and reading, subscribe now to Reading Things and expect the first issue sometime in April! 🙌
I use Soulver which is similar in capability to this. It takes a bit to get your head wrapped around these textual calculators, but they can do some cool models really well without the complexity of a spreadsheet.
I totally agree with this. I find Shortcuts incredibly powerful. In fact, Shortcuts is how I make the Weekly Thing. I have fifty or so Shortcuts that I use frequently to automate routine things. It is kind of goofy that I will at times be working on macOS, and then pick up my phone so that I can run an automation on what I was just working on. 💯
The sentiment that Pike starts out this overview of his task management system felt like I could have written it. I also look for something that is agile and iterative.
Anyhow, after many attempts at devising the One True System that will bring me ultimate productivity and focus, I’ve come to terms with the fact such a system can not exist. As life and work are always changing, and so are our habits, and priorities, and weaknesses, the ideal system for a given person is always changing. To stay effective and calm, I now expect to keep tweaking my workflows over the months and years to come. The system now grows along with me, so it can help keep me focused on what’s important.
I think of my "GTD Practice" as a lifeskill. Something I will never master, and will continue to iterate on for as long as I can foresee.
I agree with nearly everything in this article except how he approaches projects. I do have a number of evergreen, permanent projects that map to areas of responsibility, but I also have a lot of very specific projects that are detailed items.
I also do a lot with project templates which I think is a huge unlock for your task management system.
Very handy, super-simple site with an easy API to get information, including geography, about the IP address you have.
This video is almost an incredibly condensed version of some trainings that I've taken. It outlines a simple 4-step process for giving feedback.
And perhaps even more important, you should seek for and ask for feedback on a regular basis.
I found this entire story of the Ever Given surprisingly engaging. I love that the Moon was key to the rescue efforts:
In the end the difference was made by two high-powered tugboats and a force even greater: a tide that swelled to its highest point in months with the full moon, and then powerfully ebbed, helping to free the Ever Given.
Some great physics at work here and what a great job by the rescue crew. 🚢
I have both Mindnode and Marked 2 but I had no idea you could put them together like this. I tried it out and it works really slick. I could see this being a great way to draft a document that you are still working on the structure for. You can still create the body text and restructure as you wish. Very neat! 👏
This may seem simple, even trivial, but a very streamlined Flag and Reject workflow for your Photo Library is something that we have sorely needed in iOS. Darkroom continues to impress me with it’s native approach to photo management, and robust features. I've already decided it will/is replacing Adobe Lightroom for me.
I've looked for more streamlined and scriptable apps to control Tesla cars before but did not know about Watch App for Tesla. This provides a simple way to access thinks like climate control and charging status, and as an added bonus it has full support for Shortcuts automation! Thanks to Jordan Merrick's Shortcuts for Tesla article for the recommendation.
I don't tend to focus too much on this type of thing, but it is very common when introducing yourself to tell your background. You can just explain the list of things you've done, but having a compelling story as this describes is much more powerful.
I certainly did not understand all of this article, but it is an interesting walk through of solving a very complicated cipher.
Fifty-one years after the Zodiac Killer mailed this cipher to the San Francisco Chronicle, we had a solution. David submitted this solution to the FBI Cryptanalysis and Racketeering Records Unit (CRRU) on Saturday, December 5, 2020. Shortly after, the FBI was able to officially confirm the validity of our solution.
Screen sharing and collaboration tool made specifically for developers writing software. It promises to bring real-time collaboration to a number of development tools that don't have that natively. Very interesting. 🤔
If you are at all curious how computers communicate over an Ethernet network this is a very approachable walk through, with great visuals as well. This is necessary stuff for anyone that works on networks, but it is also great for users as well to just know how it works.
A comical view on The Big Stuck Boat and how we can all agree that the boat is stuck, and it should get unstuck.
Unsticking the boat will require making the boat not be stuck. It won't take a year or more of isolation, or new heights of handwashing, or phone calls to legislators.
A compelling non-profit that I am honestly surprised I wasn't aware of. They are crawling the web, like the search engine giants do, but as a non-profit and making the data available for others to use. This reminds me a bit of what Internet Archive does but for a very different purpose. Having a huge set of data like this should lower the barrier to Internet scale projects like new search engines. You can donate here.
My kids have eaten hundreds of boxes of Annie's Mac and Cheese. It was interesting to read the backstory on Annie Whitney.
Like me, it seems many others were very intrigued by the Ever Given and it’s situation.
I’m obsessed with the dang boat because people like me and you are not really supposed to be aware of what boats like her are up to. You’re not supposed to think about, or even notice, global freight, but the Ever Given has made cartoonishly noticeable some of the crucial infrastructure of global capital, which is usually invisible in most people’s daily life. She has done so with an absolutely sublime visual gag, improved by every new detail about the problems the ship is causing and every new photo of the impotent human measures being undertaken to fix them.
Another take on NFT's and the innovation they are empowering.
When viewed in this light, the nature of NFTs becomes quite clear. An NFT is a mechanism by which an artist can publicly attach their cryptographic signature to a digital work of art. In other words, it is a technology that supports in the context of digital arts the same kinds of signed editions that have existed in fine art photography for most of a century.
This is squarely focused on the provenance aspect of NFT's, specifically for Art. I think there are several other use cases that are valuable as well.
This is the best solution I've found so far to take crypto trading activity and show individual position gain/loss as well as track relevant information for taxes. It connects directly to major platform APIs.
Part 2 of the Director Series Interview with Sven Wehrwein. This was filled with a bunch of additional information to help people be more effective on boards. The topics of this one hit more on the important things to do as a board member. These two videos are a fantastic resource for those that are on, or wish to be on, corporate boards.
I got my first shot of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine this morning!
I had to reflect on the timeline. First case of COVID-19 on December 31 2019 in Wuhan, China. January 21 2020 we had first case in US. On March 11 2020 the WHO declared a Global Pandemic.
384 days after the Pandemic declaration, on March 30 2021, I got my first shot of vaccine at MHealth Fairview Clinic in Bloomington, MN.
Thank you to all the Doctors, Scientists, Researchers, and Civil Servants that made this a reality! 👏
I get my first vaccine shot on Tuesday! 🤩
From the Vikings training facility to local churches, our vaccine roll-out is leading the nation with more than 40,000 shots administered each day. #MNSOTS
-- Governor Tim Walz (@GovTimWalz) March 28, 2021
We were excited to watch Brandi Carlile stream her first live show tonight from the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville. Brandi and the Twins have done a number of streamed shows from their home during the pandemic. But this was the first show with the band, on a professional stage, and a limited number of vaccinated folks in the audience. It was amazing! 🤩
Carlile started with her powerful cover of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah", just her and a guitar. She was then joined by the Twins, and then the band on the third song. She hit every song you would want to hear. The whole band was filled with so much energy, so excited to be playing together on a stage for the first time in over a year, that it came all the way through the Internet and out the TV in our family room. ⚡️
We've been seeing Brandi Carlile sing for years now and we only get more impressed with her. She is an amazing performer, songwriter, and musician. Our whole family enjoys her music!
She finished the evening with an incredible performance of Amazing Grace. It was so beautiful I was wiping the tears from my eyes. If you haven't seen Carlile, you really should. Her talent is amazing.
Tonight we streamed The Cactus Blossoms as they played live to a limited 50-table audience at First Avenue. It was great to see them play live, and the production from First Avenue was really good with multiple cameras sweeping through the room. I hope that they continue to offer streaming options for shows. I like the idea of having an option to see bands live in the main room, but also being able to see them streaming opens up a lot of additional options to see live music that otherwise aren't available.
“Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.” — Atomic Habits (p 38)
I made four votes for the person I wish to become in my 60-min zone spin class this morning. See blue circles for digital version.
I'd like more variety in Siri voices just to have more options to choose from. I also like that they are taking gender out of the decision criteria.
Magic was a huge game when I was in college. I didn’t play, but this looks like a very faithful rendition of the card game.
This video of the Internet growth is mesmerizing to watch.
Funny Saturday Night Live intro on the topic of the moment: Non-fungible Tokens, NFTs. 😂
A good, balanced, technically literate read on Non-fungible Tokens and what they represent, and how they work.
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