Decision making, tying your identity to your name, and learning looks like wandering

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Occasionally, I also send out long-form articles on productivity and self-improvement.


I. Scaling isn't an option. You're stuck with your current capacity and the best way to deal with being overwhelmed is to optimize, mitigate, or redirect.

Commit then decide. It is by taking action that your next step is revealed. Life doesn't come with GPS, but you do have a compass.

III. Leaders don't tell you what you should do. Instead, they tell you what they'll do to support you being better.



"Nothing is more powerful than tying your identity to your own name”

Creating this newsletter is a fitting example of this.

I wasted weeks thinking about what to name it. First it was “The Knowledge Worker”, then “Detach from Distraction”, and “Optimize Output Minimize Input”, and several others I won't list because they're foolish, silly names.

Each failed because I kept trying to tie my identity to something other than my own name.

A lesson I keep having to learn is, create the work, and let the story it tells build into your identity by attaching it to your name.


”The discovery of the new will always look like wandering before it is found.”

My interpretation of this is, learn without haste.

Learning new things feels very unproductive. You'll thrash about at the beginning, fumbling around with ideas and techniques. And progress is slow.

Dissolve the outcome and it will become fun and almost playful.


Make weekend phone usage difficult.

I spend on average 10 hours per day in my office and another 45-60 minutes on my cell phone. Using this data as justification, I take the weekends off.

Saturday morning, my cell phone goes into my kitchen drawer. The ringer is on and the volume is set to the highest setting. My only notifications come from texts or phone calls.

Every now and again I'll use it to listen to podcasts or blog posts. When I'm done it goes back in the drawer. My limit is fifteen minutes of unlocked screen time.

Strangely enough, the weekends are when I'm most creative.


Integrative thinking, how to use the best parts of different ideas. Roger Martin: Forward Thinking [The Knowledge Project Ep. #97]

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