Office in memory

Ideas kept in memory prevent rest.



Databases are stored on disk, meaning on a hard drive.

No matter how fast hard drives become they will never be as fast as RAM (random access memory). And so the most frequently accessed data is stored in memory, which improves the experience for end-users with quicker response times.

The problem is memory is volatile, when the system is shut down, the data that was in memory is lost.

It reminds me of how I treat my ideas. I keep them loaded in my working memory, never letting go, never writing them to disk at the cost of never fully shutting down.

When the only tool required is thought, it’s tempting to think peak output can be maintained throughout every waking moment. But even the blacksmith’s furnace needs time to cool. And the knowledge worker risks the same when they've refused to turn off their minds to enjoy the rest that restores them.



“Rest is not something that the world gives us. It’s never been a gift. It’s never been something you do when you’ve finished everything else. If you want rest, you have to take it. You have to resist the lure of busyness, make time for rest, take it seriously, and protect it from a world that is intent on stealing it.”
― Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less



Write to disk.

Develop a method that allows you to store the state of the tasks and ideas you’ve got racing around in your mind. Be it a journal, an Obsidian vault, or Kanban board.

Take the necessary time at the end of each day to update and log your progress, but most importantly leave yourself a breadcrumb, turning it into a checkpoint instead of a diary entry. Leave yourself a place to pick back up so you can shut down and rest.

Fight to remain offline, ideas will come, simply log them and continue resting.

Until next time,

Josh Duffney

Announcement 📣: The Knowledge Worker podcast will be semi-monthly.

You can look forward to another episode at the end of the month. It’s about task management and bullet journaling.

If you have suggestions for topics or questions. Please, drop them in the suggestions box 🗳️.

Favorite-thing-of-the-week 🥰: Jim Collins: Relationships vs. Transactions [The Knowledge Project Ep. #110]

“If it’s not fun, don’t do it.”1


As I’ve pushed myself to write each day, I’ve met what Steven Pressfield calls “resistance”. Falling prey to my own pressure, I let that battle temporarily consume me but this podcast helped remind me that if it’s not fun, don’t do it. Writing my next book is something I feel I must do, and so I’m working to make it fun again. 😊