The Cardinal Mother’s Day Sin

3260035676_eb46bee0f2_bThis one’s easy: forgetting.

It really is the worst.

At some point, most of us have had that “oh cuss” moment where it suddenly dawns on us that we didn’t make any preparations for our moms on their special day. That terrible thought has been the birth of countless grocery store bouquets and boxes of gas station chocolate, all purchased in haste on the way to mom’s house for brunch. [Read more…]

Why I Hustle

15214051925_346acebfa0_kLots of really smart people suggest that, from time to time, we all stop and ask ourselves why we’re doing what we’re doing. Despite my somewhat-infrequent practice, I’m a fan of this habit. Often times, I’ll get mired down and spread thin with tasks, obligations, and responsibilities and, in an effort to simplify things (or out of sheer overwhelm) I’ll go over the “whys.” [Read more…]

How I write

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My work consists almost entirely of two activities:

  1. Thinking
  2. Writing

I do a few other things too, but it’s mostly those two things. And I spend the vast majority of my time doing #2.[1]

And given my penchant for efficiency in all things, I’ve been refining—and, on occasion, wholly reinventing—my writing workflow for some time now.

Which brings me to today.

Lots of folks—myself included, definitely—love seeing the guts of how other people work. So, in what may be my greatest act of self-indulgence ever, I figured I’d describe how, exactly, I write. Plus, sometimes people ask me about this. [Read more…]

Be Present

2113748685_94f891caf2_bAbout a week ago, I was sitting at my usual bar, having a drink with a friend. As we sat there, I found my mind wandering to all sorts of different things: work I needed to do, my kids, etc. Important things, sure, but things unrelated to the current activity. I was anxious about the thoughts that distracted me, even though I had decided, by agreeing to meet the friend I sat with, that I wasn’t going to do anything about them for awhile. [Read more…]

Mac Mastery and Knowing Your Tools

DSC_0220It may surprise you to learn that I’m not a master carpenter.

Truth is, I’m one of the least handy people I know (and I know a fair number of people). Handing me a saw and a hunk of wood, you might as well include the address of the nearest ER. It’s embarrassing.

My good buddy Chris is another story. I could spend several sentences extolling his handy guy virtues, but let’s just say the dude built his own bed. He’s good with his hands and he knows his tools. Whenever I have questions about building or fixing things, he’s the guy I ask.

Chris owns a Mac and an iPhone. See if you can guess who he calls when he has problems or questions with those…

That’s right. Me, baby.

Chris knows all about the doohickies and thingamajigs he needs to do his work. And I know all about mine, too. [Read more…]

Regarding Notes for iOS 9 and El Capitan: why I’m sticking with Evernote

114587853_cdabf6568c_bHere’s a question I’ve been asked several times in the last couple of weeks since iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan hit stable release:

Bro, are you going to stop using Evernote and start using Notes.app on OS X and iOS? It looks like it could be a serious competitor, bro.

No, I’m sticking with Evernote.

If you’re curious about the specific reasons, why I’m sticking with my beloved Evernote, keep reading. If you’re busy and need to take off, the short version is that Evernote is a vastly superior application with more features and flexibility. [Read more…]

Tiny Improvements

3007624052_f3a7133a6b_bYou may recall periods when, upon taking a quick mental survey of your life, you realize that—yep—almost everything could be a whole lot better than it is, all told. Then you might realize that pulling yourself out of such a funk is going to take a ton of work and, perhaps more discouraging, a good long time.

Such realizations are usually followed immediately by your head drooping slightly and feeling like complete crap. There may also be some swearing.

It’s “good news and bad news” time. We’ll start, as our parents did, with the bad news: [Read more…]

Recording dreams: an exercise in iOS automation

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Being a navel gazing, white, American male, it only makes sense that I see a shrink once a week. She’s really great. For the purposes of this post, we’ll call her Babs—which isn’t her real name, though I kinda wish it was.

In a recent meeting with Babs, we were discussing the quality and quantity of my sleep (which, to put it gently, suck miserably). During this conversation, we began talking about dreams. [Read more…]