Serendipity – Part 3

Serendipity

A lot of times we think of something and just by chance , you get a message related just for that.

I don’t know – how many of you have seen the movie Serendipity. If you haven’t, its a nice romantic movie about a person who believes in serendipity and the other who doesn’t but he is so much in love that he tries all means to reach out to her.

I use an android phone and on Saturday , I was thinking about deleting a lot of irrelevant photos which have been lying around and consuming memory in my phone. I have the “files” utility from Google, on my phone which I use to identify applications / files which are consuming a lot of memory. You need to know that I did not talk about deleting the photos with anyone. It was just something that was going on in my mind that I wanted to do on “some” day.

Yesterday morning when woke up and I was seeing the notifications on my phone, I saw a notification from “files” telling me that it had identified more than 12000 duplicate photos, which if I deleted, I could save about 605MB. I clicked not he notification and it actually took me to the photos where it showed me the original and the duplicates. I went through some of them randomly to check if by chance the Google algorithm could have made errors. But there were none, so I accepted the recommendations and Google cleaned up 605 MB of space for me.

Let me give you another example. You can verify this from my post yesterday. I had written about Dean Jackson’s fifty minute focus finder. however when I was writing about it, I could not locate the link to share it with you’ll.

I am on Dean Jacksons mailing list so I keep getting mail’s about his podcasts and other things that he keeps posting. Today morning when I opened my mail box, the topic of his mail was the fifty minute focus finder. For those who read my post yesterday and wanted to know what the fifty minute focus finder is, pls find the link here. I am posting it because as they say “it was meant to be” that’s why it appeared in front of me. https://www.morecheeselesswhiskers.com/155.

Now what would you call this?

For me this is pure serendepity.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Utilising thinking time – with structure

creativity, Flow, Focus, Habits, Human Brain, Thinking

In my posts earlier, I have shared with you some of the good tools I have found for focusing our time. I have especially liked the Dean Jackson video on Focus Finder. The methods he uses are simple yet profound. The key thing is that you have to ensure you are able to ensure you are able to pull out time for thinking activities.

Since we have so many things prompting us and drawing attention to them, getting dedicated thinking time is almost a rarity even for me. The challenge is that the brain has got so used to the idea of getting disturbed, that if you keep your phone away to concentrate on some activity, you actually feel guilty and end up seeing the phone just to ensure that you have not received an urgent call. The next off course is email. You dig into one and by the time you finish that there’s another one demanding your attention.

So inspite of so called success with some of the tools which have helped me, I have not yet been able to take maximum benefit out of the thinking process.

So I am working out to see how I can make thinking time a habit using the process suggested by B.J.Fogg in his book Tiny Habits. To make it useful I have also tried to incorporate a system of identifying the next problem to be solved in advance so that when I do get time to think, my brain is not going helper skelter, trying to figure out what needs to be done.

So yesterday when I tried solving one problem, I identified problems which are two layered below it. Meaning if don’t solve those problems, the problem I was trying to solve yesterday will not get solved. Therefore even though I did not solve the problem completely, the ideas that came to me during the thinking time, gave me some items to focus on to solve, before coming back to that problem.

Today since I did not have to think in terms of the problem to be solved, the moment I focused on the problem, my mind went into flow quickly before the door bell rang and disturbed me. But in that short time, with the problem to be solved, defined in advance, my brain was getting into action faster and came up with ideas much faster. If this can work, then I may not have the most elegant solutions immediately but would have started moving faster to solve challenges.

Please see if this works for you and let me know your views.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!

Three Hundred Posts

Affirmative action, Financial Independence, Habits, Marketing

I didn’t realise it but yesterday was my 300th post. What an achievement. For someone who didn’t know what to write and was always wondering why will anyone read my posts, to today watching this number made me so happy.

This journey started about 4 years back and I took my domain name around this time. Then I took the WordPress subscription to link my website to my domain.

Initially even putting up one post was an ordeal. As a matter of fact when I hit the 25 mark, I actual had a celebration post. To write my first hundred posts took me almost 3 years painful years because each time I would sit down to write on a weekend, I would think I did not have enough data and so I would go in search of data and the post would not get written.

Last year because of the lockdown due to the Covid pandemic, I got some amount of time at home and I started listening to various podcasts, one among which was I Love Marketing which is run by Joe Polish And Dean Jackson. Joe keeps talking about 2 things which I have taken to heart.

One is that – Its better to be prolific than perfect and

Two – You learn a little by hearing / reading / watching, you learn a lot more by practicing and you love the most by teaching it to others.

I have always had this penchant for wanting to share my knowledge but I didn’t think it would be of value to others so I never bothered. Then I cam across the video series on YouTube by Gary Vaynerchuk where he would put out a video everyday on wine tasting and the kind of wines he was tasting. These were short videos.

That got me on this journey to take affirmative action, to share from my practical experiences in marketing and in finance and then whatever I was reading in terms of improving our performance and health. All my articles after that have been keeping one principle in mind, you should get bite sized information in a quick read while you are standing in the line to take your coffee.

Thank you for being active readers of my blog. I hope I am able to give you even more value in the future. This writing everyday has now be one a habit and I don’t let a writer’s block come in my way. I just put down my thoughts as they flow.

Till then

Carpe Diem!!!

Procrastination – is it your brain playing games

Energy, Fear, Human Brain, procrastination, Productivity

Your brain occupies about 2% of body mass but uses upto 25% of the energy. Nothing new here. These facts are more or less known for a very long time. What was new to me when I was reading Steven Kotler’s book The Art of Impossible was the fact that the brain tries to conserve energy, so it tries to do tasks which require less energy and creates a resistance to anything new, novel, unknown etc.

I have been a big procrastinator all my life. And till now I used to feel the biggest reason for me to be like this was that I was scared, I had a fear – of just about anything. I have tried a lot of things to get out of this habit of procrastination and over the years have improved tremendously. One of the best things that I learnt was identifying the task which can have the most impact on my day and then finishing that one task, before moving to anything else.

When you have a team and you also have to coordinate with peers, you may not be able to close all things that you plan in advance.However for that I use my electronic calendar and shift the dates to follow-up with my colleagues and they remain on my calendar till completely closed. So in that sense I have become more action oriented, but there are still a huge amount of areas where I can be many times better, except for my procrastination.

Dan Sullivan has different take on procrastination, and he and Dean Jackson have a podcast called the “joyofprocrastination”. where they talk extensively about how procrastination is actually your friend. I have used some of their concepts also in my journey to improve my productivity.

However after I read the above facts in Steven’s book, it kind of made an “aha” situation for me. My brain resists my doing something new or unknown because it will have to spend more energy. Since the new or novel thing could also hurt me, it will have to do even more work to protect me.The more work it has to do, the more energy it will need to spend. Since the brain is also a pattern recognition system, it tries to keep predicting how things could shape up and therefore predicts the amount of energy it may end up spending. So it suggests avoiding the task altogether as an easy way out to conserve energy.

So now I know, I won’t blame myself for my procrastination habit. I will blame it on my brain for playing games with me. You could also check out and see if this logic holds good for you as well.

Till next time then.

Carpe Diem!!!