Blogging – does it have to be so hard?

Will Do No Comments

For years I’ve been looking for easy ways to get thoughts and ideas out onto a web page.  Yeah, most people call that blogging.  Consistency is always a big hurdle for me.  This blog is a testament to that fact.

I couple months ago I found a service that would connect with Evernote and allow me to automatically post things I wrote in there.  Well it got a little flaky and it didn’t have some of the functionality I wanted.  So I decided to just get back over here and use this old site as a proving ground and slowly fix it up as I have ideas, opportunity, and inspiration.

But what do I do with those original posts?  I could just copy them over here in one lump.  Since blogs are dated (like a journal or log, hence the name), I could back date them and fit them into the time stream as they originally came out.  But that seems like cheating somehow.  Creating an alternate history.  So here’s my idea.  I will repost them with a little introduction and that way they’ll be inserted here organically and they won’t be lost (not that they’re any great treasure of wisdom, only of effort).  And I’ll be able to get into the swing of doing things the “hard” way by posting directly to the admin side of the blog.

Now if only I could get motivated to update the fonts and graphics around here…  hmm, not really my thing.

Update: So one thing to fix is the time stamps.  This had me posting an hour earlier than I did.  Silly daylight savings.  How much daylight do you have in your savings?  Let me know.

Watching the NBA Finals, So Close

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I love a good series.  Back and forth.  I didn’t grow up a basketball fan.  In fact, I was resentful when a coach sought me out and asked me to try out for a team.  “You only want me to play because I’m tall.”  I was young and foolish – being tall’s a real advantage on the court.

But in the finals of ’93 with the Suns vs. the Bulls I finally developed an appreciation for the game.  Granted, I’m a fair weather fan and only get interested towards the end of the season.  I used to complain that it seemed like all the action happened in the last 3 minutes of the game.  Why not just skip to that and just play an intense 3 minute game.  You could play two or three a day!  Much more exciting…

I then realized something.  You had to attain a certain level, you had to persevere to a certain point to be “in the hunt” for those final three minutes to matter.  When two teams qualified to battle it out for those last 3 minutes – then it finally became the game within the game.  But you had to be worthy to make it to that place.

We have to qualify, we have to do the work, we have to take the action to be able to be there for those final seconds where so much drama and so much potential for victory or defeat are put before us.  Do the small things that will get you there,  I’ll endeavor to do the same – and in the end we can leave it all on the court and be satisfied with that.

This year we lost, but you can’t say we didn’t fight hard.

Inspired by Soth Godin’s 5,000+ Blog Posts

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A post a day for 5,000 days. That’s an achievement. I can’t even keep up with a weekly post. The problem is looking over his posts – they are short and sweet.  This 5,000th post was back on June 5th.  Here is a link to Seth Godin’s 5,000th post.

And here is my takeaway quote from that little post:

Showing up daily isn’t my challenge–it’s learning to live with the fact that I can’t say everything I want in a single post, that the trade-off of reaching people easily is that you can also lose people easily.

I would like to take up that challenge, because writing too much – too many words for the thought I want to convey is a problem of mine.  Pithy I’m not.  But a challenge like that brings up in me fears of not being able to succeed like few things I’m currently aware of.  More than public speaking.  And the excuses start pouring out, “Which blog would I put it on?”  I have about 8 dead blogs to choose from.  😀

Well, I put this one here.  That’s enough inspiration for now.

OK, Back From the Break

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The house is now back to it’s currently regular occupants. It’s time to get back into the swing of things. I haven’t left myself much time to write. But it’s not about the time or the amount – it’s about the habit… the doing it.

So I’m back. Let me ask you – how do you handle a backlog? What do you do when commitments and tasks has piled up on you and there’s really more than what you can do?

Here’s what I’m trying. It’s a simple 3 step process.
1) Keep your head and stop the madness. Drop the hatchet. There is what needs to be done today, and there’s all that piled up stuff. Put the piled up stuff in a pile (or in my case, in a plastic bin). Make sure you are keeping up with the things that need to be done today. For me… today’s “day job” is going to be a thriller with 2 meetings in the morning and a continued investigation of a bug in production. I found it but my boss wants to know what it does, when it got introduced, and why wasn’t it caught in testing? To answer all these questions is taking time. Time that could be spent moving forward – but hey, I do what I’m asked to do. If I wanted to work on a CSI team, I would’ve signed up for it. But it pays the bills. Plus I have a meeting over lunch regarding a church meeting coming up this weekend. And then tonight I have a meeting to possible bring in some side business. (However I think that will fall through because I’m going to be asked to do somethings that aren’t my specialty. Just because they would pay me to drive a race car, should I? I don’t think I’d be good at it – so an offer shouldn’t always be accepted just because it’s “there”… word to the wise).

2) Make “working the backlog” one of your tasks and take it on as you can. It will get smaller and you wont break anything due today that will eventually get you back on track.

3) Be ready for explosions and handle them expeditiously. Some of the things in your back log pile will have due dates that slip past (like a birthday card being sent out? oops). Handle them the best you can… move them to the top of the pile when you work on it. And be flexible.

It works better for me than just lining everything up chronologically and being “behind” on everything for a couple of days to a couple of weeks.

Would it work for you? How do you deal with these things?

In the Swirl of Events

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Today is my last day of work before getting some time off over Thanksgiving. I have a lot of things I need to do at home and in side projects, it makes it very tough to follow through with my “day job”. But I do want to keep my commitment to write here. So I’m simply going to put down a “Will Do” and see what happens there.

Today’s Will-Do list:

  • I will write a revision of the magazine article
  • I will get a typist to cover my for my sermon

Those are the only time pressing issues – I think.  Those are the urgent, the important list is waay longer.  TTFN

A Will-Do List

Coaching, Disciple, Will Do No Comments

I was sure I’ve talked about this before – – some things are just worth repeating.

One of the things I’m considering using this blog for is my “Will Do” list. Now why a WillDo and not a ToDo? Maybe you can think of it as a MustDo list. These concepts and lists have different purposes.

For example, in the time management system called “Getting Things Done” (GTD by devoted fans, and the rest of us…) the idea is to put everything on your list to get it out of your head and on to paper. Then you spend your time prioritizing and deciding whether that was hair brained, an errant dream, or a vital task that must be accomplished.

I’m not looking for something like that. That is an all encompassing tool. I would like a comprehensive system. But there is no system that works if you don’t run it. And for me, consistency is lacking so any system will fail when you don’t crank the handle.

However, I do still have things that need to be accomplished in my life. Hmm, authorizing my newly issued debit card is on the list since the gas station doesn’t believe me when I say I have the new one while I’m trying to convince them to “just use the old, expired one for now.” There’s also that little issue with one of the taxing authorities, they’re looking for about a hundred bucks and some form from 3rd quarter of 2010. And they probably won’t wait forever… Things still need to get done.

Enter the “will do” list. It is a list that contains items that must be done today for the day to be considered a success. So how would this list work?

  • It would have to be a short list.  You couldn’t put everything that pops into your head on this list, there are only so many hours in a day.
  • It would have to be specific.  “Work on my book” doesn’t fly,  “write 200 words” would, or “review chapter structure” would if even just a cursory glance is enough.  (Helpful tip, sometimes even just saying “open and review outline” sounds simple and an easy throw away task.  But once you’ve gone to the trouble of opening it, you might as well work on it for a little while.  It’s a great way to trick yourself out of procrastination.  Or, as I like to call it, overcoming static friction.  Inertia works both ways, staying at rest AND remaining in motion.  I know that’s hard to believe with our friend friction around, but it’s true!
  • It has to be a closed list.  This means you have to predetermine what’s on there.  You have the list laid out and you say “Go!”
  • It has to be reviewed.  Now there is an amazing phenomenon that just putting the list down and never reviewing it will get at least 60 – 70% of it completed – that’s been my experience at least!  Could this be the “Law of Attraction” at work?  Don’t get me started… another time.  But “testin’ and trackin'” is the only way to incremental improvement.  If you don’t review, that percentage will remain at it’s 2/3 success rate (not bad, but lots of room to improve.

It’s that last point that this blog might come in handy for.  It would be the accountability that pushes for a review.  Of course this may mean that there has to be two posts – one for the list and one for it’s review.  Is that really true?  Could I just post that the last WillDo list has been reviewed and that be enough?  I’m still thinking about this one.  How can a blog be used as an accountability partner or tool?  Have you got ideas on this?

Reviving an Abandoned Outpost

Disciple, Learning, Will Do No Comments

This site has been left to it’s own devices since I was in the hospital a year and a half ago. I’m thinking about re-branding this place, adding some curtains and changing the direction.

I need a place on the web to just splatter random thoughts. A public-private partnership (that just sounds so good… I think every endeavor should have a public-private partnership. It just would be so integrated) between hopes and dreams and actions and plans. The name is snappy, the URL is short. It definitely doesn’t roll off the tongue. It’s also not something you could give a shout out to on radio or in a podcast (hint, hint). But that’s not the intention. This is a place that you either “run into” by searching for all kinds of weirdness – or I let it slip to you that it even exists.

It’s an illusion hiding right in front of your face. It’s there in your browser, just one click away. Well, that’s the big idea.

So what kind of things am I expecting to go here?

I know that it’s always easier to have someone else hold you accountable, in fact that the way it should be. I just don’t have anyone who’s applied for that job at the moment. So this would be the place. I will make statements here, I will lay down markers here. And as they are reviewed – either commenters will hold me to account, or I’ll do it myself in some sort of review process. << oh, a review process... very needed by me. And if I can figure out a way to do it systematically I could share it with others to generally improve the world. Journaling
I continue to struggle with this. I thought that SetOfSail would be the place for this, but there’s a definite theme over there. I might cross post that way, but this would be where the sloppy 1st draft would go and then the polish thought would be shared there. So that wasn’t the place to put a mess like this.

Forbidden Topics
This is the one that will get me in all the trouble, and I know it. I am passionate about things that make people mad – specifically religion and politics. These are the things that people seem the most opinionated about and if you find that a person is on the other side of your cherished opinion, you have a tendency (a compulsion? hmm…) to judge and ridicule someone with a different viewpoint. I’ve been told, by a few, that I do better than most at seeing perspectives other than my own (maybe it’s because I’m a Libra << naw, that's worse than hogwash (what is hogwash, it’s surely got to have some serious stick associated with it…)).

So that being said, I will on occasion explore religious topics from my peculiar, and some would say fanatical, point of view. I will also be talking some political and economic trash. So, this is your warning. If you don’t like that sort of thing or you are afraid that you will think less of me after reading along, then don’t. But I would leave you with this thought on that. If you read an opinionated post on a taboo subject and you think differently of me because of it. Did I change, or did you? I had that opinion before when you liked me, so by reading it you have changed. Is that good or bad? I don’t know if it’s either. But I can say that you have more control over your thoughts and opinions than you think you do. So I would urge you to bring those thoughts front and center and be more self-aware. And if you wouldn’t mind, you could keep on thinking I’m more than the wildly random thoughts I produce. I still think you’re worth hearing from and by your choice the feeling can continue to be mutual.

Yeah, I can get a little down in the dumps sometimes. I am told I can be hard on people close to me. I am often harder on myself. That may show through, but this might just be how I wrestle through and come to grips with myself. So cut me some slack here. Hey, were you invited in the first place? OK, I probably did do that – but if I choose not to respond to every piece of advice understand that I’m not saying don’t bring it, I’m just saying I don’t have to buy it. Are we cool?

If I were organized…
I’ll end with a couple of things that I’d like to conquer daily (yeah, this is heavily influenced by my unfogettable five. Actually, that’s pretty much the list. If I could do that, or use this blog to hold myself to that – things’d be swell.

Let’s just see. (Am I doubting myself already?? )

Looking for a profile pic

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I’m too groggy to have the good sense to get my good side. But my new glasses are lookin’ sharp 🙂

Posted via email from Mykl Kelsey’s posterous

Making the Best of What Is

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OK, so I wasn’t super productive this morning. But I did sleep an extra hour or so. That’s a great thing all in itself! And I’ve been able to catch up on some news items and listen to two podcasts. But now I’m a little late for work. Gonna have to hustle. But even in this compressed time, I’ve been able to have some quality thoughts. One of the podcasts hits directly at my new web venture. I’m thinking about linking to it for my inaugural post – not sure about that yet. I’ll have to decide in about 2-3 days though! 🙂

The sun’s coming up, it’s frosty out there. Gotta get moving. My shoulder was feeling good when I got up. But a little time in front of the desk, and it’s tightening up. We’ll see what the day brings. Moving out into it. One week down.

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Oops missed a morning, but not a day

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Oh, I was going to send this off this morning – but I was actually working on one of my scheduled blogs. It took a lot longer than I thought. Going after these one after the other may be a bit more than I can manage. I’m still on top of things so far though. Is this going to just be a post about how I was late in posting?

No, I’ll add some news. I actually got my first check that isn’t directly tied to my working hourly – it’s tied to business and profit and percentages and such. It’s not enough to quite my day job but it’s a start and it’s something I want to build on. I want my whole income to be derived from sources such as this. I’ll continue to chip away at that little by little.

I posted what I have for an action plan in a forum that I’m a member of. No responses back yet. I sure hope someone does a critique, I could sure use the help. And that’s one thing I love about commenting online. I can benefit directly, but then a number of other people can also benefit by seeing what I did and didn’t do correctly and listening in on the criticism and encouragement I receive. It’s till a little bit too spectator for me, but a lot of people learn that way. We’ll see what happens there.

One more day and this week will be completed. I have another doctor’s visit over lunch today for the shoulder. Eight or so more on the outside before I have my surgery. I can make it that long, I think. I’ll write more in just a few hours.

I’m going to do a little exercise before going to bed – very little.

Posted via email from Mykl Kelsey’s posterous

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