Monday, March 31, 2014

Blogging - again

If you've known me for very long, you know that blogging is an on again/off again proposition. I'm on again, and hope to be so for a while. I thought I would take a second to explain why. Late last week on the the men who works for me, Terry Plyler, sent me an article. This is one of the things that Terry does for me; several of the most significant technology articles I have read over the last couple of years have originate from Terry. This one is titled How to Scale Yourself and Get More Done Than You Thought Possible. It is a summary of a talk given by Scott Hanselman, one of Microsoft's project managers, and it is must reading for anyone who is breathing. I'm not going to bore you with a summary of the article; what I want to do is give you my 4 takeaways.

  1. Inbox Issues. Scott recommends that you have a very precise organization for your inbox and that you use tools to manage it. I receive at least 200 emails every day, and my inbox is my to do list. My problem is that I let the arrival of emails drive my life. I am not sure how I'm going to do it, but I am going to change that. Somehow, I am going to take back the reins of my email.
  2. Reserve Fridays for Reflection. The idea here is to become aware of goals and outcomes - 3 each, for a day, a week and a year. I am not naturally inclined in that direction, but I could stand to become more so. Again, I'm not sure exactly what that will look like, but it's going to change for me.
  3. Try the Pomodoro Technique. 25 minute sprints in which nothing is allowed to distract you. I "multitask," which works for me because my cost of task switching (read the article) is pretty small. But I rarely give myself 25 minutes of uninterrupted time. That is going to change. I will close my email and put up some indicator so that everyone knows I'm focused; and then focus.
  4. Conserve Your Keystrokes. For Scott (and for me), this means blogging. If I want to share something technical, spiritual, philosophical or personal, blogging it increases the likelihood that it will outlive me. Further, writing helps me tie things up nicely; if I just say it, it is never as locked-in as if I write it.
So, I have begun blogging again. At least one post a day, usually at the end of the day, to reflect on something I have learned.

No comments: