Turns out seeking productivity and focus isn't a new thing.
"If to do were as easy as to know what were good to do, chapels had been churches, and poor men's cottage princes' palaces."
--Shakespere's Merchant of Venice, written 400-some years ago
It reminds me this old book "How to Live on 24 Hours a Day" from Arnold Bennett 1867-1931 which is Free on Kindle from Amazon : http://www.amazon.com/How-Live-Hours-Day-ebook/dp/B000JQU7DA/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1338661538&sr=1-1
Really interesting to see we all had same problems since centuries ...
Indeed. Those are from 1932, Henry Miller (http://www.ajkesslerblog.com/productivity-tips-from-1932/)
1. Work on one thing at a time until finished.
2. Start no more new books, add no more new material to “Black Spring.”
3. Don’t be nervous. Work calmly, joyously, recklessly on whatever is in hand.
4. Work according to Program and not according to mood. Stop at the appointed time!
5. When you can’t create you can work.
6. Cement a litter every day, rather than add new fertilizers.
7. Keep human! See people, go places, drink if you feel like it.
8. Don’t be a draught-horse! Work with pleasure only.
9. Discard the Program when you feel like it — but go back to it next day. Concentrate. Narrow Down. Exclude.
10.Forget the books you want to write. Think only of the book you are writing.
11. Write first and always. Painting, music, friends, cinema, all these come afterwards.
I hear people talk about luck a lot. Straightup - luck doesn't exist.
If you believe in luck, then you believe either: (1) some people consistently defy probability, or, (2) some things aren't a result of cause and effect.
Life is a series of probability. Every day, there's a chance that a given set of things will happen. If you want to have a successful life, expose yourself to as much high-upside low-downside probability as you can. Any given thing you do might not work out, but if you expose yourself to high-upside low-downside, good things will happen. Read books, reach out to people, try to get projects working, keep trying to write and build things, keep learning new skills, keep treating people well.
If you want to fail at life, expose yourself to high-downside no-upside probability. This is short term gain at long term expense type stuff. Cigarettes. Unsecured debt for consumption. Most TV.
You'll keep getting "lucky" if you keep exposing yourself to things with upside and limited downside. If you get an amazing job or contract that you had a 1 in 1,000 chance of getting, were you lucky? No, especially not if you applied and pitched 1,000 other places. If you say, "Ok, I'm going to keep trying to get what I want until I do" you'll get it, as long as it's a positive sum game you're playing.
I've always enjoyed new experiences and after seeing Quidam by Cirque du soleil last night I can't believe I waited so long to do so, it was incredible. I went with my wife to the Toledo Ohio show and was really blown away. It was more like live art than circus.
The show opened with a narrative construction about a girl who wants to dream and play and at first I thought that had they done something more akin to Alice in Wonderland I may have enjoyed it more but the loose narrative allowed for all kinds of different things and that worked out to the show's advantage.
There were people twisting from hanging ropes, hanging fabrics, and hanging hoops. There were gymnasts who were exponentially more stunning than anything the Olympics will show this year. During the show I thought "I wish this is what the Olympics gymnastics were, a team event of flips, launches, catches, tosses, turns, and 'acrobattery' ".
There were balancing acts where neither these words or the picture below do justice describing. The means of getting in that position were as delightful as the end itself .
There was a silent comedian who was very funny in the spirit of the show.