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Subscribe to 🔎 Finding Focus, an email newsletter, where I share with you my reflections from the past week to give you one thought, tip and tool to improve your focus and creativity.

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🔎 Finding Focus #15 — The Surprising Lesson Learned from Two Years of YouTube

For the past 985 days I have created a new video every two weeks (each fortnight, not Fornite). Along the way, I’ve learned a ton, grown significantly, and enjoyed thousands of insightful comments and responses from so many of you. Thank you for that. It’s been a fun ride, but what surprised me is: The most important lesson I’ve learned from YouTube wasn’t how to create great videos. General advice for growing on YouTube recommends posting a new video each week. This advice is sound, it...

brown wooden blocks on white surface

👋 Hey Friends, I've been heads down the last week or two. There are some cool things brewing (more on that at the bottom of this message). Stick to the Plan: A Sticky Note Strategy These first 90 minutes are essential. They are my most valuable of the day. This short window after I get up is when my brain is sharpest. It is my High Energy Time. I’ve known this for two years now, but I still wait until that block starts before I schedule something for it. I wake up, walk down the hall, grab a...

👋 Hey Friends, Today’s post is a personal reminder to myself. Many call me particular. Others say: attentive to detail. It is a skill that I have found helpful, especially as a designer. I recently came across this quote from John Gruber: “The quality of any creative endeavor tends to approach the level of taste of whoever is in charge.” — John Gruber I like to think my particular nature has led to increased quality in the projects I’ve been involved with. What I haven’t (until now) thought...

👋 Hey Friends, Remember that negative thing that Matt said? Actually, he never said anything at all, and I think that hurt more. I still think about it from time to time, and it still stings. That amazing dinner I had with Steve? That has long since been forgotten. This is how our brains work, they are built for survival. To our brains, things that are going well are often tuned out to create room for things that are a risk or cause us harm. This served us well when we lacked shelter and...

👋 Hey Friends, This morning I was reading Ali Abdaal’s Feel Good Productivity, and it resurfaced one of the most powerful productivity tips that I’ve come across, which is the Five-Minute Rule. This rule has gone by many names and iterations, and most of those seem to have origins back to David Allen. The Five-Minute Rule is the idea that if you just commit to doing something for five minutes, at the end of that time you’ll have momentum and can continue on that task for significantly longer...

👋 Hey Friends, Welcome to this special Monday Edition of Weekly Reset, I hope you enjoy! I’ve been considering an alternative title for this newsletter of “Finding Focus”. What do you think? Is it an improvement over the current title? Let me know. 🗝️ Key Idea: Autodidact’s Paradox During this past week’s book club, I stumbled upon a new concept that I’m calling Autodidact’s Paradox. An autodidact is someone takes initiative to learn on their own through independent study. Someone that...

👋 Hey Friends, I hope the week was good to you. 🗝️ Key Idea: Quality Driven By Service This past week, I read Ryder Carroll’s 2023 Reflection. If you're not familiar with Ryder, he is the creator of the Bullet Journal. He said something that resonated with me deeply. I’ll quote it here: “Because I think that my personal standard for quality is often driven by fear, not service. The narrative being that if I can’t show up perfectly, then I shouldn’t show up at all. That’s what keeps...

👋 Hey Friends, The clock has struck 8 a.m. on Sunday morning, and Week 5 of 2024 is officially in the books. I’m starting to feel like myself again, and this week the ENT gave me confidence that the pill I aspirated on the first of the year isn’t going to kill me. Now that that is in the rearview mirror, let’s start this week with a quote I love from Austin Kleon. It goes a little something like this: “When the sun goes down and you look back on the day, go easy on yourself. A little...

👋 Hey Friends, I hope the week has been good to you. 🗝️ Key Idea: Finding Gratitude It feels like I’m finally settling into the new year. I typically get this feeling within the first few weeks of the year, but aspirating a pill on New Year’s Day didn’t exactly start my 2024 off the way that I would have liked. I’m mostly feeling back to normal, and I’m excited about getting back into my routine. Before we settle into a new year, it makes sense to take a look back and reflect on the past...

👋 Hey friends, Another week of 2024 is in the books. I hope it was a good one for you. 🗝️ Key Idea: High Energy Time When I wake up in the morning, it takes me a bit to get going. I'm not one of those "bright-eyed and bushy-tailed" people who wakes up ready to take on the day. Despite this, I know that once I do convince myself to roll out of bed, the next two hours are my best two of the day. These 120 minutes are my freshest and most creative. They are my "High Energy Time." Commonly, when...