Category Archives: Productivity

Paper

person holding black pen

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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.

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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

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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?

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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.

 

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Brain Like a Sieve

bakery baking blur close up

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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

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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

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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

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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.

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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.

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Negativity

pexels-photo-54379.jpeg I have a tendency to be rather negative. This is a problem I have. This is a problem I need to deal with. This is a problem I don’t quite know how to deal with.

In the past I have Googled the subject of emotional suppression. Unless you hail from the planet Vulcan emotions are something that you have to deal with. At the time of that search I wanted to know if emotional suppression was really possible. And at times I still do.

My emotions are often in turmoil. I find that a good mood can be destroyed by something relatively minor. Being jump around happy is amazing – but sometimes wonder if sacrificing those times would befitness-jump-health-woman-56615.jpeg worth it if it meant never having to feel bad.

I know that, as humans, we can’t give up on emotion. Which means trying to deal with them.

To that end I have been meditating. I honestly can’t say with any certainty how much it has helped. I suppose the only way would be to have two identical mes and one meditates and the other doesn’t and then the data is compared – so bring on the cloning vat – set course for Sontar.

There is a lot of noise in every day life –   calm-daylight-evening-267967 both in reality and in our own minds. Thus taking a few minutes to stop and not think can surely only be beneficial. With the caveat if you’re in a car heading off a cliff you might want to try turning away.

Switching off completely is more difficult these days than it ever was in the past. Thanks to social media it is so easy to get sucked into you tube and Facebook. The former particularly is one I have a love/hate relationship with. I have found some wonderful videos on there but, on the other had, I probably don’t need to know 25 Things I Hate from some random person.

Creeping_butercup_close_800By the time you read this I will have returned from my holiday. I hope that I will feel refreshed and a bit better about myself.

I think the negativity of others is worthy of consideration too. If you have a friend who gets done on you and tells you you are useless then maybe you want to distance yourself from them. I am just a guy with a blog. There is no reason to take advice from me but a friend being negative is not going to help. It may even be in the guise of being helpful. Maybe they are telling you to be realistic about a dream of yours. In life there is no guarantee of success but in terms of ambition I refer you to the words of J Michael Straczynski: ‘Never Surrender Dreams.’

pexels-photo-261510Naturally writing is my dream. I can’t imagine not doing it. At times it is infuriating; when the image so clearly in my mind is so hard to translate into these little inefficient squiggles. At times it is annoying: when I don’t know something and have to get passed the 20th page on a Google search or find an expert. And sometimes I realise that the thing I need to know is something I will never understand.

Always though I know this is what I need to do. Not in a destiny way. Not in a ‘it was meant to be’ way. This is just something that has to be for me. I hope that many of you have that enjoyment of something.

For now I keep going. I try to be more positive and find the things that make me happy. And I will keep writing. Maybe one day I can make a living from it. That would be a great day indeed. But maybe not though – it is a compulsion, it is almost like a drug, but I must, as Joe Sisko says, ‘Write the words.’

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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.

***

The pictures here are from: https://www.pexels.com/

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0500

pexels-photo-859933 I have been thinking lately about the merits of getting up at 0500. And in reading that you might think that I have gone mad. Maybe I have gone mad but that is a separate issue.

The thing about getting up so early is that it allows me to get stuff done in the morning. I can go off to work knowing that a few nice tally marks have been added to my to-list – meaning I can try and relax when I get home and not have to worry about anything.

ache-adult-depression-expression-41253.jpeg Of course this is me we’re talking about so there is always some worry.

It will take a while to get used to. They say it takes a month of doing something for a habit to be formed – so a way to go yet.

There is a health angle to this as well. Waking up early means I will sometimes get very little sleep. And they say that there is a connection between sleep and longevity. I find myself wondering how the maths works out on that one. How much longer would a person getting an eight hour average live vs a 6 hour average? If the difference was negligible the 8 hour people might spend their extra years sleeping.

Right now (For me it is Wednesday) it is almost time for work. This morning has gone alright. I have done my meditation, finished my book, done some housework, and of course finished this blog post.

I hope you’ve had a wonderful Sunday.

See you next week.

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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.

***

The pictures here are from: https://www.pexels.com/

 

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Productivity and Tally Marks

check-class-desk-7103 When it comes to simple pleasures there are few things better than the pleasure of crossing something off your to-do list.

In my case I use tally marks. This is good because without them my to-do list would have lots of repeats. The down side is if I ever need to use my arm, if I misplace my note book, it could be quite a scary thing. (Let those who know tell those that don’t – or just Google The Silence)

Having a relaxed to-list, with no dates just tasks, has been good. I have given myself ‘permission’ to do what I want. I bet you can guess what isn’t getting marks next to it…  pexels-photo-136409

Yep it’s exercise – funny how that works out. I’ll get to it eventually. Sorry what’s that sound…

Oink, flap, oink, flap, oink, flap…

Anyway at the moment I am waiting in for a delivery of tea. I hate waiting for deliveries. Firstly I don’t know when it will arrive and the intercom will make me jump. And secondly I can’t play music as I might miss the intercom. Nice tea is essential – even if I am using tea bags which I know a connoisseur would have a problem with – anyway I digress.

pexels-photo-247899I’m also reading a book on productivity – or rather decluttering one’s life which gives more time and so you can be more productive. The book is called The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**K And that isn’t me censoring myself there are literal astrixes on the cover.

I’ve almost finished the book and it has been quite interesting. The crux of it is learning to say ‘No’. I’m sure we’ve all struggled with that. Have you ever gone along with something just because we felt an obligation? Why is it so hard to say the sentence: ‘I’m not a fan of Tupperware and would rather have dental surgery than spend an evening talking about it.’ – or perhaps kinder words than that.

I would say however the book is rather thin. The central ideas can be summed up very quickly – if you are interested I would recommend getting it from a library. I bought it and two followups from an actual shop. Which is a very weird thing to do in this day and age – and perhaps shows the problem with an impulse buy.

I hope that wherever projects you have going on are going well and that your weekend has been a lovely one.

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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.

***

The pictures here are from: https://www.pexels.com/

 

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