I’d love to tell you that my New Year of work started off with a bang. That I was so productive your eyeballs will spin.

I can’t though. I’ve slept in. I’ve watched movies. I’ve struggled my way through two phone calls. Seriously who knew a phone call could be so so hard. I’ve hated my house with three different levels because stairs are so much work.

Yup, I’m sick and it sucks. In fact I almost totally forgot about this with naps happening.

My holiday’s were pretty good though. I did a decent job of walking away from work and hanging with my family. I tested out some new stuff for YouTube content for 2019. I put up my 6X3 (foot) calendar. I grabbed some new camera gear and got lots of great time hanging out with my kids.

If you’ve found my content helpful then new in 2019 I’ve opened up a Patreon page. You can help ensure that more helpful content keeps coming.

What I Shipped

Monday I talked about doing my daily migration in a Bullet Journal.

Wednesday I did a vlog (one of the new things for 2019) and was so sick I never linked to it on my site. Watch a day trying to get to make pizza.

So sick, still sorting content out so you got a bit of extra content this week in the form of a review of Pixave for iPad. It’s a good thing I checked, because I didn’t even schedule it to go yet.

Friday Five

1. Distraction Free Samsung Chromebook 3?

My friend Chris:

Before I get into my thoughts on the device itself I should point out that this isn’t my first attempt at a device to focus with. In fact, up until the end of 2017 I had gone through a string of iPads and fancy keyboards ending with an iPad Pro and the Apple keyboard case. With every generation I bought into the idea that “this time it can be a productive device” without ever finding a way to make it so for me.

It’s an important acknowledgement that he took himself to every device and had the same problems with focus. We do the same thing with productivity tools, change them when the current one has 200 tasks we’re never going to do.

Chris ends by saying that the way to evaluate if the Chromebook works for him is if we see more blog posts. So Chris, I’ll be watching for them.

2. “Ugly” Bullet Journalling

Rebecca Renner writing for Book Riot:

Ugly bullet journals are a wonderful thing. They exist. It’s just that a lot of them are hiding, ashamed to show their pages amongst their more Insagrammable peers.

But that’s ridiculous, because it seems to me that, contrary to the perfectly measured and color-coded reputation bullet journals have garnered, this style of organization lends itself well to the messiness of life.

Mine probably qualifies as an “ugly” Bullet Journal. I’ve also seen them call a guy’s Bullet Journal or minimal. I supposed the name doesn’t matter, it just means that you’re not drawing a bunch of stuff on every page turning it into an art piece.

I’m in favour of building a tool that works for you, not one that photographs well.

You can see my mostly ugly Bullet Journal December setup here:

3. A Bullet Journal is like The One Ring

Jamie Todd Rubin on his Bullet Journal:

Almost at once, I saw exactly where a Bullet Journal would fill a desperately needed gap: the One Book to Rule Them All.

Jamie gives us a history of his notebook usage before showing us how a Bullet Journal fills the holes he kept finding in his day. A seemingly Bullet Journal shaped hole.

I currently have my Bullet Journal, but if I’m heading out the door and want to go light I’ll grab a Field Notes book to act as a way to grab anything that’s needed. I quick grocery list will end up here if I’m heading out to get groceries because the whole Bullet Journal is just cumbersome to wrangle on a shopping cart.

My other notebook is my reading notebook. All my book notes start here, then migrate to digital places and end up in reviews.

If you’re wondering why I’d choose a notebook over software, I wrote about that. Maybe the biggest reason is that by default a notebook says no to a task. If you don’t decide to move it forward in a book, or to a new notebook, it doesn’t hang around bugging you.

4. Rebecca Renner on 6-months of freelance writing

I think the first 2 paragraphs open this up on the right tone:

I’ve always wanted to be a writer, but all of my life, people told me it wasn’t a feasible career.

Man, I love proving people wrong.

It does take some of that boldness to run your own business. If you’re not willing to dig in to the much harder work of building something from nothing, then you’re not cut out for this whole running a business thing.

Another good note that she makes:

Success is built on a hefty pile of failure, an iceberg of failure, if you will.

So so much failure happens. Are you going to put in your 3-years? 3-years of failure looking at you until you suddenly get lucky and work something truly stellar out?

5. Cory Miller on Friendship

Cory writes:

If you want my “friendship” in order to compare and compete on stuff like money, status, or material things … uncheck the friend box please.

The more successful you are the more often people call it friendship when it is anything but that. Don’t do this please.