jsx

A daily journey of productivity, health and building something great

I have been on a bit of a quest lately. I have been going through some older movies and albums that are and have been the very inspiration to me in the past. I want to talk about a movie soundtrack which is not something that I usually spend a lot of time with.

Marie Antoine was released in 2006. At nearly, twelve years ago I remember watching the trailer. I thought it was so cool that they had more modern songs in the trailer. I ended up seeing the movie and during the opening credits seeing Gang Of Fours “Naturals Not In.” I remember sitting in the theatre thinking you can’t do this. How are they getting away with this?

I didn’t know you could do that with the soundtrack. But, they used the tools that they had to tell a great story and to get your attention. It was just such a different approach to how to use music in film. It felt like it broke all the rules and it didn't care.

I have been working on front-end projects for almost 10 years now. I rarely write about the topic and I rarely speak up about it.

I love going through Codepens, listening to different podcasts, watching walkthroughs on YouTube and learning as much as I can from the community. We share a lot and it is always inspiring to see what people create and what people are doing.

I get inspired by seeing what people can create and what people do with technology. The places they go and how much they can push something when you thought it was maxed out.

I used to be scared and ashamed to share the things that I would create. The idea was weird or it would only make sense to me and nobody else would understand why that needed to exist.

Then I got a piece of advice today “Just pursue”.

Sometimes, you just need to sit down and start something. I have had so many problems getting back to my writing habit. So, I wanted to get back to it and I wanted to go back to that method that has always worked out well for me.

I like to just sit down at the page and start to write and see what gets out. A lot of the time it is pure garbage. But, it is one of the few methods that work for me when it comes to writing. I find that if I don’t do that then it becomes almost impossible to start.

I have been thinking about my projects and my habits very critically lately. I keep trying to fit myself into a box and fit myself into these categories. I am trying so hard to be something. I just want to be X. But, that doesn’t exist yet.

“If you're going through hell, keep going.”

I don’t have it today. I spend the evening trying to code a little project and it didn’t work at all. But, I decided that I wasn’t going to fail let alone fail on the second day of the challenge.

These are the hard days. These are the days that can break you. These are the days that can make you throw it all away.

But, I love days like this. Days when you still have the fire and desire to do something but it is not there. The burning desire to create something magical but you are just sitting and staring at the cat. These are the days that remind us that we are in the right place. No matter how much that I want to give up. I can never stop creating.

Last year, I started doing this challenge on Medium where I would post 100 words a day. 100 words each day and that was one of the rules. I did this for a number of months and some of the writing I am sure was brutal. But, having that daily win and that daily sense of accomplishment was something that was just contagious. Since, I stopped this a few months ago, I have only written three posts. Then previous three months it was almost 65. I wanted to that mentality back to the blog and start to explore more.

When it comes to productivity apps I have tried them all. I have tried all the systems and I have read a lot of books on the topic. But, I find that I need to tweak my system once a year to keep me from getting lazy and just ignoring it.

This year, I wanted to shake my system up. I finished last year with no momentum.

One of the things that I never felt like I accomplished anything. So, I set up an IFTTT rule that would send me an email every Sunday and recap all of the items that I marked as completed on my todo list.

That was just nice to see and it brought me some level of accomplishment.

Then my wife showed me this planner that she saw an ad for. It was called Panda. The thing that I liked about panda is they had space for questions for each day, each week and each month. But, there are specific questions for each unit and you didn’t have to think much about it.

I started using this planner for just a few weeks. But, the stunning thing about it was I found that I was wasting some time and was not optimizing the time that I had.

Plus, I found that since things were not opened ended. I had to focus in on and answer some of the questions. “What was my priority for today?” and “What do I want to focus in on?”

I found for me the tiniest bit of structure helps tame my wild brain and actually get something done.

Photo by Ishan @seefromthesky on Unsplash

Today, I did something that I have been wanting to do for a long time. I don’t remember how I heard about this first but I spent an hour today “floating”.

Floating involves lying in the small pool of water filled with 10 inches of water highly concentrated Epsom salt in order to make your body perfectly buoyant.

The first few minutes took me a bit of getting used to. I was so nervous in the run-up to it. An hour is a long time and I thought that the water wouldn’t keep me afloat. When I got into the room, I started to become at ease.

Within about 5 minutes I was in the tank and the room was pitch black.

It felt like almost a scene from a movie. I can hear the water hitting the sides of the tank as I moved around.

I settled down and just tried to embrace the situation. Finally, as I started to calm down. I started to have almost a conversation with myself. Questions and ideas that have been swirling around started to come to the surface.

After my hour was over, I remember the walk to the car. I felt like I hit a reset button. Almost like that first day back from vacation. I felt relaxed and I felt like I had a clean slate.

I have been investing in cryptocurrencies for a while now. I have started to get into some more altcoins. I wanted to take a stock of some of the coins that I own and some of the coins that I have been following. – Stellar – IOTA – Request – Link

These four I do own some in each of them. But, I find the tech to be interesting and they are coins that I am going to watch this year.

Nothing above is investment advice. Just some things I find interesting. Investing in cryptocurrencies can be dangerous

2017 didn’t end the way that I wanted. I started the year off strong. But, this year I want to make a few changes and reset quickly.

One focus, this year is going to be building some systems to help me be more productive. I want to create a system that will put my back up against the wall but also force me to act more and turn off that inner critic. I want to take some things an automate and prepare as much as I can.

I used to always take the philosophy to keep a clean schedule and just figure it out as I go. Last year, didn’t work and something needs to change.

It was about -4 and it felt like it could be -30. I wanted to go outside for just a minute. In the winter one of my favorite things is when it gets cold you see your breath outside. I still love. It reminds me of life and it makes me feel so present in the moment.

I started out this year not quite sure what my goals and my path should be. I was asked recently in a card game “What Was Your Biggest Accomplishment?”. If you pause and reflect on that for a minute it's a big question. But, I time and time again keep thinking about the business I built years ago.

I think that I am on the path that I should be ok. I am going to write a lot of blog post and I am going to build some things and some of them may not be interesting or helpful. But, I am going to wake up and not be afraid of the following my curiosity.