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Many readers will already know that I’m in love with Evernote. It’s a tool that I use every single to day to take notes, write articles and store information that I need to keep for future reference. However, I now have another love: Penzu.com
It’s ok. I’m not cheating on Evernote. They both now have a firm place in my heart.
Evernote helps me collate and create.
Penzu helps me think and process.
If you’re not familiar with Penzu, it’s an online journal. Its website describes it thus: “Penzu is an online diary and personal journal that is focused on privacy. With a unique and compelling user experience, it makes writing online as easy and intuitive as writing on a pad of paper.”
For fellow Latin geeks, it’s derived from “pensare” which means to ponder, examine or be full of thought.
When do I use Penzu?
You know those days when you have so many things to do, or so many ideas to pursue, that you just don’t know where to start. It’s when you feel so overwhelmed that you just don’t know what to do next.… Read more …
When it comes to choosing the right role model, I see too many people choosing … the wrong one. It’s a trend that’s been exacerbated by the online world.
That’s because if someone is smart about building an online profile, they get exposure and visibility. However, it’s so important not to confuse “profile” with “success”.
Here’s an example. I was talking to my friend, Alice (not her real name). She talked about how inspired she was about the journey of a famous blogger/startup entrepreneur who has managed to carve out an enviable lifestyle travelling the world and running his business from his laptop. We’ll call him John.
As a result, Alice modelled her blog and her business on John’s. She wrote headlines, just like John’s. She talked about creating products, just like John’s. And I began to notice certain graphics and phrases creep into her blog that looked eerily like those I’d seen on John’s blog.
Alice aspires to have a healthy income well in excess of six figures. (You know, closer to seven figures.) She wants to make enough money to invest in long-term assets, and she has plans to create a mini-empire.… Read more …
The one thing that government should change about superannuation.
I’m generally a calm person. But if there is one thing that gets me fired up, it’s insane tax laws and dumb regulations.
One of the dumbest relates to the way we have to treat our superannuation. Don’t get me wrong. I think the concept of super is awesome. But the regulations on how we can invest these funds border on moronic. Superannuation laws are among the smartest and dumbest in Australia…… Read more …
I’m on a bit of the productivity roll at the moment. Admittedly, I’m always looking for ways to streamline my workflow and become more efficient in the way work.
So I really resonated with this productivity chart from Funders and Founders.
You can print out a bigger version here.
It features the 80/20 Rule, of which I’m a big fan. The other strategies I’m particularly fond of include:
* No meetings unless they are decisive
There is nothing more frustrating than talking for hours without achieving a definite outcome. To avoid suffering from “death by meeting”, start each meeting by determining how long it’s going to take and what decisions you want to make by the end of it.
* Start an “Idea Dump” book for genius ideas you can’t work on right now
I love this – and it’s a must. I used to write down all of my ideas, but they were never collated in one spot. So I would have ideas on post-it notes, notebooks, Evernote, on the notes function in my phone – all over the place!… Read more …
You want to be productive. You want to get more done. But you seem to be falling into a never-ending spiral of tasks, emails, projects and so on. You don’t feel like you’re ever going to get on top of everything you need to do. Obviously, this causes stress. And one of the main drivers of stress is the feeling of overwhelm, that you’re drowning in a sea of tasks that never seem to stop flowing.
So you work like crazy but feel like a hamster running on a treadmill that just seems to get faster and faster. And your only option is to keep going because, if you take a break, you’re only going to have an even longer “to do” list when you get back.
I get it. I’ve been there. I know what it’s like to feel like you’re never going to get on top of things.
You end up compromising. After all, you’ve actually been told NOT to strive for perfection, otherwise you’ll never complete any tasks. You’ve learnt that you just need to get your projects to “good enough” because that’s better than not getting them done it all.… Read more …
So you’ve been inspired by someone you admire. Maybe you want to achieve what they’ve done in their life or business. Perhaps you simply think they’re awesome.
You would love to connect with them. You dream of them endorsing your book, blog or business. Or you would give your right arm for the opportunity to pick their brains for 15 minutes. But you have no idea how to make this happen.
Linda Coles is the author of Start With Hello. She says her book reveals how you can master the skills of talking to strangers. I don’t mean about chatting to the cute guy on the bus in the hope you exchange phone numbers. Linda means engaging with strangers to turn them into valuable professional clients or contacts.
I specifically wanted to get Linda’s advice on how to approach your heroes. Maybe you’ve always want to reach out to Seth Godin, Sheryl Sandberg, or Richard Branson. How do you make this happen? Here’s Linda’s advice.
Hello. You are my hero, let’s connect!
Have you ever thought about reaching out to someone who is high profile but have never taken it any further because you don’t know the best way to approach them?… Read more …
My friend David insisted that I read Playboy. Apparently, it has good articles. Specifically, he was referring to the recent Playboy interview with Tony Robbins. It’s definitely worth a read so if you have a chance, head on over to the site and check it out. Just be prepared for a few pictures of pneumatic blondes to flank the text.
One thing Tony mentions struck a chord with me. Tony is often pegged as a motivational speaker, but in the interview he says: “I’m a strategist, not a motivator. I’m obsessed with finding strategies that create real results in the shortest period of time.”
That’s something we all need to remember.
It lies at the heart of why we don’t take action.
You might have a great idea for a business. You talk to your mates about it over Friday night drinks. They love it too. But one year later you’re still talking about it. You haven’t taken any action.
Or perhaps you know you need to go to the next level in your business. But it’s such an overwhelming concept that you just don’t know where to start.… Read more …
Earlier this week, I couldn’t get to sleep. At all.
I had a productive day in the office brainstorming a tonne of ideas and, by the time I left, we had bedded down some pretty exciting plans, timelines and new projects.
That night, as I lay in bed, even more ideas swirled around my brain. It was as if someone has turned on an idea hose and I had no idea how to turn it off.
On one hand, I was so excited by this that I just wanted the calendar to fast forward so I could work on them all! On the other, I was annoyed they didn’t wait till a more reasonable hour to invade my mind.
Needless to say, I couldn’t sleep. This is an anathema to me because I’m the sort of person who can usually go to sleep the minute my head hits the pillow. I can sleep on planes, trains, automobiles, even at the opera while the soprano is hitting a high C. I am what you would call a Very Good Sleeper.
So being unable to doze off is a very frustrating experience.… Read more …
We all have heroes. Role models. Or simply inspirational people who we learn from and look up to. But what happens when your heroes disappoint you so profoundly that it rocks you to your very core?
That happened to me recently. For some years I gained inspiration from the teaching, lifestyle and philosophy of a certain individual. We’ll call him Mike.
Mike is an entrepreneur, author, high achiever and considered by many to be a role model. I’ve admired him for years. We’ve met on several occasions and in those brief interactions he’s been courteous, warm and friendly.
Even as his star continued to rise on an international scale, we would exchange occasional emails and refer to each other as friends. I was not only inspired by his success, I was proud of the way he approached life with integrity.
He was what we Aussies would simply call “a top bloke”.
Until he wasn’t.
Some years after first getting to know him, I witnessed behaviour that made me question everything I thought was admirable about him. I won’t go into details here but, frankly, it traumatised me.… Read more …
Breaking up is hard to do. But sometimes you need to take a deep breath, realise when something’s not working – and have the guts to make a clean break.
Anyone who’s initiated a break up will know that it’s tough thing to do. Sometimes, it can take years before you have the guts to separate. And, in the meantime, you live a life that can range from mild dissatisfaction to sheer misery. But sometimes, we crave familiarity and comfort more than the potentially liberating feeling of uncertainty and adventure.
The things we associate ourselves with – partners, associations, jobs, friends – often define us. But when we finally take the plunge to make the chop, we often wonder why we didn’t do it earlier.
I recently wrote about my realisation that I need to let go of many things in my life. And over the past couple of weeks, that’s what I’ve been doing.
1. It’s just not working for me anymore
I started with baby steps: unsubscribing from newsletters and online groups that I no longer get value from.… Read more …