Notes from a Floating Life Thoughts about productivity, digital living, and leading a simpler life

Links Roundup - June 27, 2017

Don't Blame Your Tools

A toolbox full of tools

Maybe you just can’t finish all those tasks. Maybe you can’t stay on track. Maybe you can’t get or stay organized.

Over the years, I’ve talked and worked with a number of people who were in those situations. And most them felt let down by their tools. They believed that the web of software and apps and services were the cause of their productivity dropping off.

They were wrong.

If you’re in any of those situations, or situations like them, don’t blame your tools. Your tools aren’t the weak link in your chain of productivity.

You’re that weak link.

Look inside of youself and ask what’s really going on. The answers might surprise you.

You might have too much to do. You might be procrastinating too much. You might not be focusing. You might be focusing on the right things. You might not be mindful of what you need to do, and everything hits you at once. Or you might have just stopped caring.

Changing your tools won’t solve any of those problems. Doing that could just make matters worse.

Why? No matter how good or how hyped your tools are, they don’t do the work for you. You’re the one doing the work. Unless you’re focused, unless you’re mindful you’re going to struggle and become frustrated.

Instead of focusing on the tools, focus on the cause of your problems. Try to find a way of fixing those problems. How? Here are some suggestions:

  • Do you have too much to do? Then look at either weeding out tasks that aren’t important or sharing your workload with someone else.
  • Are you procrastinating? Ask yourself why and try to find a way to bring more focus to your work.
  • Are you losing track of what you need to do, when you need to do it? Make sure the work you need to do and when it’s due is noted down in calendar or text file. And check that calendar or text file every day.

No, getting back on track isn’t simple. It takes work. It requires your attention. It’s not up to your, which are rarely the solution in cases like this.

It all comes down to you.

By regaining your focus, by being mindful, you’ll be able to work with your tools. You’ll be able to do what you need to do efficiently and effectively. You’ll be able to reach done.

How to Deal With Frustration and Bitterness

A man, with head in hand

We all know people who are frustrated with or bitter about aspects of their lives. Sometimes, with life in general.

You know the type of person I mean. Someone who spends a lot of time nitpicking. Someone who spends a lot of time complaining about anything and anyone.

You might, from time to time, be one of those people.

You could be disappointed with something that happened in the past — a job you didn’t get, a school or course you didn’t get into, a relationship that failed. It could be an accumulation of things that haven’t gone well in your life.

There have been several times when the universe decided to squat down and defecate on my life. When that happened, I was bitter. I was angry. But I realized that the bitterness and anger weren’t making my life better. They weren’t making the situation better. In fact, that bitterness and anger were making things worse. Not just for me but for the people around me, too.

Instead of embracing your bitterness and frustration, you need to let go of it all. Here’s some advice which can help you do that.

Links Roundup - June 13, 2017

It's OK to Admit Not Knowing Something

A set of letter blocks spelling out 'IDK'

Recently, a friend of mine started using a relatively complex piece of software. And, to be honest, I’m currently pitying both his computer and the software he’s using.

Why? When he can’t do something or if the software doesn’t work in the way he expects it to, my friend goes ballistic. A long, nasty, and often creative stream of profanities spews from his mouth. I’m sure his blood pressure rises to unsafe levels.

While it’s true that my friend has (and always has had) a few issues keeping his anger under control, that’s not the only reason for his outbursts. He just doesn’t know all of the ins and outs of the software. That lack of knowledge frustrates him and any time someone brings that lack of knowledge up, he just gets angrier.