Meditation as a design tool

And that’s how I discovered that meditation is an incredible design and problem solving tool.
Instead of wasting hours browsing the internet looking for a solution or an idea, I sit in my room, close my eyes and simply think about the problem. It’s an incredibly useful exercise and more often than not, I come up with solutions faster that I’d do by browsing randomly the internet.

It sounds like the “walking meditation” practice that Cal Newport mentions in Deep Work. When you want solve a problem, get away from your computer and go for walk focusing on the problem. You’ll get a solution almost every time.

David Sparks writing about scheduling his workdays:

I treat the blocks of time more like versatile soup ingredients than a rigid jigsaw puzzle, so I am happy to move them around as I’m planning the next day.

I like this analogy of the calendar working like a puzzle where I can put and arrange pieces of my time as blocks. The problem is making a daily plan then scheduling my whole day simply doesn’t work for me. This system feels too restrictive, and believe me, I tried it. It was creating unwanted stress and admin work because I got into the flow, ignored notifications then rescheduled stuff constantly.

I like the idea though. Also, currently I have a longstanding problem reviewing my right task lists at the right moment. Using my calendar, I’ll try to schedule blocks of work categories, like @Home or @Admin which are representing context lists in my GTD system. I hope it will start to form at least a list review habit for me, so I can start to trust more in my system.

The secret for this—as with many things—is trying to not overdo it.

The great thing about blogging is that I can grab my iPad and start rambling about a topic which then turns into an idea I want to do. So, I publish the raw post (sometimes privately) and then send its link to my inbox to review later.

I just love to do this!

It’s Saturday so the best way to spend the day is developing an iOS app for my blog. I wanted to search it’s content from Spotlight, so I’ve created a small app that loads all my posts into a table view and also indexes them. Now I can search and load the actual post. It’s really cool to quickly find my stuff and also a great way to learn new APIs in iOS.

12/02/2018, 18:46 – Colin Walker

The outboard memory is like an external hard drive, a place to curate any useful information, quotes, facts or figures you might come across. You might be familiar with the term “commonplace book” which is, usually, a handwritten book where all these references and snippets would be placed.

I’m very into the idea of using my blog as a commonplace book. Maybe some of that stuff should be public though.