Category Archives: Productivity

In Search of a Title

https://www.pexels.com/photo/view-ape-thinking-primate-33535/

It is funny to me that the first thing that I am expected to write for a blog post is the title. Shouldn’t a title come at the end? The beginning for the reader but the end for the writer. As I write this I have no idea where it is going. And that is scary and exciting all at the same time.

https://www.pexels.com/photo/choices-decision-doors-doorway-277615/

While looking for inspiration I found this picture. Maybe it is just me but it feels like a good representation of my mind a lot of the time. The paralysis of indecision. What do I do? Which thing on my list?

A person’s life, their future, hinges on each of a thousand choices. Living is making choices!

Captain Picard (TNG: A Matter of Time)

On waking we have to decide if we are going to get out of bed or doze until we end up getting ready for work in a great rush! And when it comes to creativity we have to decide which project to work on.

Photo by James Wheeler from Pexels

I remember seeing an interview with Christopher Judge where he talked about writing. He said that the only way he could get his scripts written was to lock himself in a room until it was done.

Photo by Maria Pop from Pexels

And you can’t argue with the results. The SG-1 episode “The Warrior“, that Judge wrote, is an excellent story.

Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

I have spoken quite a bit about productivity on this blog. I have used paper, various apps, and a spreadsheet and all of them have flaws. In the final analysis maybe the thing to to is to just sit down and do it. Which is true but not very helpful.

https://www.pexels.com/photo/bookcase-chair-computer-contemporary-263209/

In other news I have just come to the end of a week off work. The flat is still a bit of a mess but I have got ride of a small army of plastic bags. So progress is being made. I hope that all your endeavours are going well.

***
I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors. 

I have a Patreon page. I hope you will consider supporting this blog: https://www.patreon.com/unstableorbit

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Productivity, travel, writing

Write the Words, Brother Benny!

A picture of a neat desk with a typewriter.
https://www.pexels.com/photo/ballpoint-pen-classic-coffee-composition-261510/

How many of you, I wonder, got the reference in the title? If you did kudos. Yes I want to talk about writing today – or lack of same. At the moment my writing is inching froward like a snail.

A close up of a snail on a road.
Photo by invisiblepower from Pexels

I suppose it is all about perspective. If you want to walk the length of the UK then an hour won’t give you much head way. If you want to walk from one side of the room to the other you can do it many times in an hour. And a novel or a play is a very big thing indeed.

Actors preparing for a rehearsal of a play.
Photo by Ruca Souza from Pexels

I am working on a play. It is 33 pages long so far and my target is 50. I am enjoying the process. Hitting page 50 doesn’t mean it is done of course. In fact editing can take longer than the writing. There is just one problem…

It’s just a bunch of stuff that happened.

Homer (The Simpsons: Blood Feud)

I can write the words and I can form a story but the message is taking its sweet time arriving. Maybe a message isn’t actually needed. There are things I want to say and I am not sure if I am saying them.

Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi from Pexels

The play is an expansion on a short story I wrote: The Sound of Silence. The theme I am aiming for is language and communication. Which sounds similar to two modules I did in university: Language and Society and Communication and Persuasion. The trick is to aim for the end. Which is what I am going to do. In between my posting here and my never ending novel – the novel is going well though. I attend Cardiff Writer’s Circle every Monday it gives me a degree of accountability. There are people who know if I haven’t written the next section. It helps.

https://www.pexels.com/photo/hands-coffee-cup-apple-5199/

So I will keep writing the play, the novel, and posting here. This year is going to be the year. (He said with cliched January optimism.)

***
I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors. 

I have a Patreon page. I hope you will consider supporting this blog: https://www.patreon.com/unstableorbit

Leave a comment

Filed under Productivity, writing

How has Your First Week Been?

https://www.pexels.com/photo/blackboard-business-chalkboard-concept-355988/

I can’t answer that question as I haven’t lived it yet. This is the problem with writing these things so far in advance. A week has happened though and hopefully it was a good week.

Additional: Although now the week has happened as apparently I am proficient at procrastination. Not that I haven’t been doing stuff I just haven’t been doing this!

https://www.pexels.com/photo/man-flying-on-parachute-near-green-trees-67298/

The new year always feels like parachuting to me. The end of the year has happened. The celebrations have happened and suddenly it is just January. Which to me is a bit of a nothing month.

Suddenly I am in free fall into a new would of possibilities. And as the year goes on the ground gets closer and closer and I start to wonder if the parachute will open – will the end of the year make me feel I have achieved something?

https://www.pexels.com/photo/achievement-confident-free-freedom-6945/

Time ticks away and every year seems to go faster than the one that preceded it. We have so much time each year and yet so much of it is already allocated to work, cooking, cleaning, and other necessities. I know where I want to be in 365 days time – it has been the same for the last few years. The question is how do I get to the destination.

https://www.pexels.com/photo/backpack-commute-commuters-locomotive-1170184/

It is said metaphorically and literally that the journey is as important as the destination. I am not so sure that that is true. A train journey can be fun, especially if travelling through a picturesque part of the world, but wouldn’t you hate it if you never arrived? Sounds like a hell realm to me. Especially as over priced snacks would be all there was to eat.

…in many human cultures, the thirtieth birthday is considered a sort of milestone. It marks the end of youth and the beginning of the slow march into middle age.

Doctor Bashir (DS9: Distant Voices)

In September I will be 32 and that fact is somewhat scary. The plan for my life, such as it was, didn’t come to fruition. I feel like I am taking all my time just to stay afloat in life and not get anywhere. This year I need to get somewhere.

Photo by Anugrah Lohiya from Pexels

My passport is on the table in front of my now. And I need to use it. I have some savings and I think I need to plan a trip. Planning is difficult for me. My job requires booking leave a year in advance for one thing. For another I can’t book a flight and an Air b’n’b without work granting me leave and I can’t ask for leave before knowing the flights – Catch 22.

Maybe this sounds silly to you and maybe it is. This is something I need to work on.

One week into the year I am a bit shaky and not that happy. I am glad though that I have written this post and continued my unbroken chain on this blog. See you next week.

***

I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

I have a Patreon page. I hope you will consider supporting this blog: https://www.patreon.com/unstableorbit

Leave a comment

Filed under Mental Health, Productivity, travel, writing

2019 Two Weeks to Go

Don’t Panic

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Also Corporal Jones (Dad’s Army)) 

Today, as I write this, my mind is in a complete jumble. I get like this from time-to-time and it is a difficult to put the feeling into words. 

This picture is a good representation of how it feels sometimes. My mind is starting to calm down but earlier it was like there was this fog of thoughts. And I can’t even completely put into words what I was thinking about. 

Thinking about what you can’t control only wastes energy and creates its own enemy.

Lieutenant Worf (TNG: Coming of Age) 

Yesterday (Monday) I did some Christmas shopping. Naturally it was very busy indeed. I do not like crowds. I have to put in extra mental energy just to walk as I find my way through.

Photo by anna-m. weber from Pexels

Shopping offline is a nice thing to do at Christmas time but sometimes I like the idea of just ordering from Amazon. (Other enormous companies are available.) There are no crowds and it is just easier.

I haven’t been sleeping too well lately – or maybe I just haven’t been sleeping for long enough. Despite what I said last time this upcoming new year does feel like a place for a new beginning and I know that that is an illusion. 

Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so. 

Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)

What am I going to do? I don’t know.

One thing I have achieved is a meditation streak of 241 days. I would like to think that that has helped me but I am not sure. The jumbled feeling in my brain is still there. 

Photo by lalesh aldarwish from Pexels

This post is my way of working through some stuff and it has not been entirely successful. It is now Friday for me. I have some time off over Christmas and maybe that will give me the opportunity to work things out. I at least want to reach the point where, at the end of a given day, I feel happy about what has been achieved rather than annoyed and what hasn’t. For today writing this post has been an achievement. 

Sometimes the most adult thing you can do is ask for help when you need it.

Rupert Giles (Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Seeing Red) 

***
I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

I have a Patreon page. I hope you will consider supporting this blog: https://www.patreon.com/unstableorbit

Leave a comment

Filed under Mental Health, Productivity

2019 Three Weeks To GO

Let’s See What’s Out Their.

Captain Picard (TNG: Encounter at Farpoint)

At the end of the year many people set resolutions and review all that has happened in the year. We see the new year as fundamentally different than the one before when, in every meaningful sense, it is not. 

Make now always the most precious time. Now will never come again.

Captain Picard (TNG: The Inner Light)

A yeah can begin at any point at all. So can a week. We don’t have to wait until January or Monday to begin the new diet, life plan, or exercise regime we can start now. In the western world we are approaching 2019 – other calendars are on other years and indeed start their years at different times.

If I was designing the calendar I think I would separate Christmas and New Year. I think March would be a far better place to start the year – as in fact it once was. Then the year would start when the weather had started to improve and maybe it would feel more like a new beginning. With our calendar we have Christmas and Boxing Day – then three normal days before new year. I know I am not the only one who finds this a bit weird.

This must be Thursday,’ said Arthur to himself, sinking low over his beer. ‘I never could get the hang of Thursdays.

Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy)

I am writing this on Thursday and it is a good excuse to use that quote because, oddly, I know what he means:
Monday is the start of the week.
Tuesday is the continuation and not very important.
Wednesday is midweek and the weekend is in sight.
Friday is the end of the week – just one more shift!
Saturday is a  day off and you can sleep in!
Sunday is a day off but you have to prepare for work and try to get to bed at a good time.
Thursday is just sort of there.

This year I am not making resolutions as I always fail. There are also two things, no I won’t be more specific, that I have not got around to that I have been meaning to do for a year. It is a bad habit of mine. If it is not on the to-list it doesn’t get done. Sometimes it doesn’t if it is on the to-do list but that is a separate problem.

The one thing I have managed to achieve this year is being consistent hear! There was a bit of a shaky start but for most of the year I have posted every week. And that is something I am pleased with. 

So what have you achieved this year? I hope it has been a good one. See you next week.

***
I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

I have a Patreon page. I hope you will consider supporting this blog: https://www.patreon.com/unstableorbit

1 Comment

Filed under Productivity, writing

Paper

person holding black pen

Photo by Lex Photography on Pexels.com

Note books are a weakness of mine. I often go into Paperchase in town just to have a look at what they are offering.

There is something magical about a pen and paper that just does not exist with a computer. I may be a bit Giles like when it comes to books. While I wouldn’t want to give up on my various computing devices I know what he means when he he talks about books being smelly.  There is something singularly wonderful about paper.

I have spent a long while trying to find the perfect app to help with my productivity. The answer all along was a note book.

person writing on white book

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

In a note book you don’t have to worry about formats, like not being able to put the date into DD/MM/YYYY for example, instead you just write. It is freeing. Even for someone, like me, who’s handwriting looks like it was done by a spider who fell into an inkwell and the marks on the page were the result of its death throes.

Which is why for anything long I am continuing with some piece of technology. My morning pages will always be on a computing device. Otherwise if I ever looked back at it it would be like trying to decipher some hidden code!

abandoned ancient antique arch

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I would never attempt to write a novel long hand. Have you ever read The Woman in White? It is an excellent novel, one which I should read again soon, but to me it is even more amazing that it was written long hand. That must have been an incredible strain on the hands. I remember how bad it could be during exams. I can’t imagine how long it would have taken to write a novel of that size long hand.

I don’t think that paper will ever truly disappear. Even if we are living on Mars I think many people will still want to pick up a pen and write – or sit in a chair and read. You can’t curl up and read in quite the same way with an ereader.

I want to close though in asking you a question. What is something low tech that you appreciate?

***

I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Productivity, writing

Brain Like a Sieve

bakery baking blur close up

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The last post was bang on time. It was not late at all. Except I did the internet equivalent of putting in a locked filling cabinet in a part of an office building where nobody goes.

And the reason you have a lovely picture of a sieve to look at is because the idea I had has taken a holiday. Write stuff down my friends.

I hope that things are going well with you. I am continuing with Morning Pages and I think it is useful. If nothing else it gives a space to vent every morning. Never underestimate the value of a good vent. Just sit on your bed and pretend that your teddy bear is a very good friend of yours.

wood bridge cute sitting

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

He may not be able to offer advice but he will really listen. And sometimes that is what you need.

Writing this post is a little strange for me. At the moment I am feeling fine. Normally I write about depression on the bad days but today was good.

I had the opportunity to work in a different department at work. (I am keeping where I work secret.) So I have had an early start today and an day of lots of activity – moving stock from shelf to shelf and generally trying to get the shop organised.

photo of a woman holding an ipad

Photo by bruce mars on Pexels.com

And now my brain has found the key to the locked cabinet, I have fought off the leopard, and I can tell you what I was going to tell you.

On my last day off I got a lot done. I timed myself and it was five hours. There was exercise on that day, reading, writing. meditation, and house work. And you know what? It felt good.

I have this mindset of needing to have fun. The problem is I don’t even know what that is and in fact it is so simple. Fun is just what makes you happy and apparently, for me, fun is marking off stuff on a self created to-do list.

It is another example of Idea vs. Reality. The primary one being food. How many of you I wonder have had this happen: I think I will buy that thing…doughnut, burger, sausage roll, ect, and then you eat it and are disappointed. The idea was marvellous the execution not so much.

alone animal animal photography blur

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I was accused of being dull the other day. Well it is all relative. Last weekend millions watched a bunch of guys kick a ball around. To me that is dull. If you like football that is great! I do mean that. To me it is dull. (And growing up sports on TV meant my shows were bumped!) I have discovered that productivity is actually fun. Knocking out a few items on my list and then trying to think of what is fun is not fun.

Maybe, by the national average, I am dull. I don’t care.

This post was written when I have had a good day and thus it is bright. I know the dark will come again. That is just how it works. For now there is this blog post… and cookies… there are always cookies.

***

I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

Leave a comment

Filed under Mental Health, Productivity, Uncategorized, writing