Storytelling

For 2019 I chose the theme of “Compounding”. Not strictly a goal, but a single word that should be present at the top of my mind when facing decisions, hardships, and successes. I wasn’t as good as I could have been in regards to using that word to help me progress past certain boundaries, and obstacles. But I did have some successes with it.

This year, I’m not going to forget the word compounding, but I’ve been giving a lot of thought to a new theme for 2020. That theme will be Storytelling. I’ve come to this word for a variety of reasons:

  • I started my professional career as an animator, which is a kind of storyteller who works with movement.
  • Over the last two years, I’ve been studying and practicing Improv comedy. An act of creating characters, relationships and stories on the spot and in the moment
  • I’ve been very mindful of the stories I tell myself over the last year. Especially the ones that are from the always chattering monkey mind, which insists that I’m too much of this, or not enough of that.
  • At work, we use User Stories to help us understand the users of the things we build. “As a Blogger, I need to write an article, so that I can express myself. User Stories are indeed stories. They tell the who, what, and why of a given action.
  • I have been tinkering with parts of a puzzle, and never putting them together completely. Web Marketing automation with zapier and other no-code tools, iOS and MacOS automation, Coaching services, Niche Job Boards and Tshirt sites, and many other “failed” side projects. Lack of focus is my story there.
  • I’ve been using images to help solve problems at work. These kinds of business drawings tell the story of the company or users.
  • Just this month I had conversations with people I’ve known for a long time that reminded me of the things I miss, and that also happen to be the most rewarding experiences for me. Telling stories.
  • We all tell stories to each other. It’s how we communicate to have people empathize with us.

All of these related thoughts (and maybe some I’m currently forgetting) have me coming back full circle to remember my love of storytelling. By bringing that to the top of mind as my yearly theme I can refocus and create.

I’m strongly considering creating an animated short film. It’s not really that I want to animate or relearn a 3D application again, it’s more like that feeling where I want to express myself in a visual way. To tell a story. To feed my good wolf.

A Brief But Awesome Trip To Austin

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Weekend Vibes

For the last couple months I’ve been planning my weekends on a sheet of printer paper with a big black marker. Sometimes this looks like a list, other times, a mindmap. Always chicken scratch, lol. Most of the time it’s titled Weekend Vibes. I don’t have a technique or process. I just get all the junk out of my brain and onto paper on Friday night or Saturday morning. Sometimes we collaborate on the paper as a family. At the end of the weekend it goes into the firestarter or recycle pile. It’s ephemeral, loose and unstructured. I like that.

Surfing the flow

I caught up with a friend tonight. He said:

Surfing is like riding pure energy. There’s a moment where you transfer natures energy through the board to your feet and up through your body; out to your outstretched arms. Before it all falls apart and returns to the water.

I like this a lot. I’m now asking myself how do I make performing sketchnoting, bass guitar and improv more like this?

Is it knowing tools and process well enough so that you can detach from the everything in your life and focus on the flow. The now. The energy.

Or maybe just focus on that flow and make mistakes until you get to ride it a bit. Repeat until you know the tools and process and can therefore stay in flow longer.

Conflict

I’m reading Why Buddhism is True which speaks to the meditation, mindfulness, and the ties from those centuries old practices to modern day cognitive behavioral therapy. Regarding Stoicism, I’m reading The Obstacle is the Way and it’s been eye opening with similar notes to the ties from ancient philosophies to modern world. The lesson I took the most from is Amor Fati. That’s loosely translated to the love of fate. No matter what obstacles, conflict, and challenges come my way I don’t simply need to bear them, but embrace them for the opportunities to grow and change that they present.

When there is conflict on team. Instead of hiding from it, ignoring it or escalating it, I’m practicing making it completely transparent for the team. I’m summarizing what I am hearing from the team members so I can recap each side of the argument in a way that hopefully transfers to the other side.

I’m asking things like “I’m hearing rephrase the issues, is this your understanding of the issue?” And “What can we do to ensure that each viewpoint is heard and we reach understanding?”

I remind myself to be in the moment with the conflict, and to see what opportunities lie within it. It’s simple but not easy.

The Five-Set

I suppose I’m starting a new series of posts. These will be based on the five things I’m ruminating on, practicing for work, parenting, some other aspects of my life. And for fun, of course!

I’m very interested in the overlap between these areas:

  • The Agile mindset, originally a way to develop software, now being practiced in other places
  • Performing Improv comedy, and how being in the moment and trusting your partners is paramount.
  • Mindfulness, as we in the West have been practicing it to reduce distractions and focus.
  • Stoicism, the ancient philosophy, not the modern “deny your feelings” BS that seems to be hanging around. I think that the philosophy was founded on understanding what is in your control and what is not, and how choose actions that are beneficial to yourself and others.
  • Visual Communication. How our stories and narratives combined with images allow humans to gain faster and deeper knowledge and empathy.

If each of these is an ellipse laid upon each other, the intersection is where I’m focusing as I study and act in each area. See the ABCDE section in the middle of the diagram. This is the Five-set as it’s known in a Venn diagram. Hence the name of this series of posts.

Fate and coffee

I participated in the Out of the Darkness Portsmouth walk this past weekend. While there, I heard this parable and it moved me.

Carrots, Eggs, and Coffee

I carry a large coin with Amor Fati (roughly translated as “Love of Fate”) written on it. It reminds me that whatever comes my way, I should embrace that obstacle or challenge and see what opportunities may be there.

I still struggle with this, and the coin is a physical thing which I can touch to remind myself to embrace whatever it is, when it happens. So I can be the coffee bean more often that the carrot or egg.

Proportions

I’ve started a retake of Improv 201. My teachers and I thought another go at 201 was the best course of action. I have to work on being more specific in scene as my actions are too vague at times. Also, trusting myself to say the first thing that comes to mind when finding the emotional reaction in a scene. That last bit is a quote from my previous teacher, Jen. I’ll keep that all in mind as I go through the class.

Tonight my new teacher Tara said something that resonated with me in the context of improv, but also in my interests in Stoicism, at the job as an Agile Coach, and as a parent.

You have two eyes, two ears, and one mouth; use them proportionally.

That one is a keeper.

Training your strengths, hiring for your weaknesses.

I’ve had two conversations recently about the concept of training your strengths, hiring for your weaknesses.

The freelancer

I spoke to a friend who’s an animator, and creative director. He often builds teams of other freelancers to complete a given project. He said that he’d rather not take the time to learn super technical process, not that he isn’t capable, but it’s just not his strengths and what he wants to be doing. He’d rather hire to cover that, whenever possible, due to budget.

The big team

Another conversation with someone who is a lead of creative/technical people at a large firm had the same core concepts. I was speaking about the concept of hiring for fit with the team, and my past experiences determining peoples strengths. We agreed, and he added a note about how he uses the teams weaknesses as input to the hiring process. If the team lacks certain skills or mindset, he looks to candidate who exhibit those to round out the team.

Both the small indie and the large company seem aligned here, and both have the same challenges. Evaluating our teams strengths and weaknesses, finding candidates with the (often “soft”) skills that bring the team up.

I’ve done this work when hiring, but it was never formalized. Our hiring teams just talked about this as a part of the process. Is anyone doing this in a structured way?

A calendar for the Elephant, and the Rider.

As I was listening to the End the Time Management World. Start the Mind Management World episode of Kadavy’s Podcast, I was thinking of the classic Maker vs. Manager schedule conundrum. I have personally blocked off my own calendar for some “heads down” time. That has varying levels of success, based on your role, and company culture. When I worked in Client Services it rarely worked.

This got me to thinking, what if we were able to have a real “mind management” calendar tool? What if the software (with your permission, and definition of course) could monitor your time for a while. Then it could auto-populate your calendar with times that you are unavailable, because you are working and creating value. It’d have to send auto-responses during those times. You’d have to define those, and have some criteria to let a small group (loved ones) interrupt you or reroute them to a txt message, for example.

Most calendars I’ve used (including paper) are for the Rider, not the Elephant and they don’t pay attention to the Path. What if a mind management calendar could learn from your Elephant, see how you clear the Path (or should clear it), and let the Rider really have some say in all this?

What would that calendar tool look like?

The worse you make it for him, the funnier it is.

At the improv jam tonight, the facilitator Andrew Morgan gave the group some pointers throughout our time together. One of them was to increase the intensity of the scene as it went on. Not so much in terms of volume or crazy antics but more in terms of raising the stakes.

I recently wrote my first comedy sketch. It’s not perfect, but I’m proud of it. Been something I’ve wanted to do for a while and it feels nice to get it out of my head and out into the world. It’s a five minute scene (ballpark) about someone who works in a corporate office. I asked some people for feedback on it, and I got a similar bit of advice.

A funny person I know said (paraphrasing), try to get the character closer to what they want in each interaction, and then right when he’s about to get what he wants, take it away. Then do that again and again. Each time increase the reasons he can’t get what he wants in terms of improbability or absurdity.

I’m a Star Wars nerd. Ever since A New Hope came out when I was 5, it’s played a part in my life. On the way home from the theatre, my dad ruminated and asked “how did they do that”?

I didn’t realize that what we just experienced wasn’t real or maybe I did on some level, but I had suspended my disbelief 100%. I asked how did who do what? He said it must be someones job to tell the story and make the special effects.

Since then when people asked what I wanted to do when I grew up, the answer was “make Star Wars movies”. I didn’t know how or what specifically until later.

I don’t love every Star Wars movie now that I’m older. But I really enjoyed The Last Jedi . One of the reasons I liked it so much (spoilers) was Rey’s backstory. She’s not a “chosen one”; her coming isn’t prophetic. I listened to a podcast with the writer/director where he talked about why he made the choice for her backstory. He said it was because (paraphrasing again) that it would be the hardest thing for her to hear and deal with.

I heard another podcast recently that taught me more about writing than anything I’ve read before. I fall victim to embracing a structure. This should happen at page X, that should happen at page Y, at the bottom of the Harmon Story Circle is where you do the plot twist. The podcast talked about why those things tend to happen at those specific intervals. The transcript is here.

In this podcast Craig Mazin says:

What you write is an ironic disruption of stasis. Ironic as in a situation that includes contradictions or sharp contrasts that is, and hear me out, genetically engineered to break your character’s soul.

In my previous life as an animator, all these things ring true as well. It’s all narrative after all. Be clear, have status exchanges, raise the stakes, make the character struggle.

People love good characters because they change based on the obstacles they face in order to get what they want/need. As a writer we get to be mean. We purposefully put these obstacles in their way to knock them back to where they started.

It’s kinda fun to be mean.

I now understand that this works in all forms of storytelling; comedic sketches, film, and in the moment of improvisation on the stage. Maybe in standup too? Perhaps even the reverse is true in the narratives we tell when we are building software via User Stories and Journey Maps. Reduce User Pain, make more enjoyable experiences. But that’s another post.

How you make people feel

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. - Maya Angelou

This quote came across my radar again and it’s been working away at me in the background all day today. At work I’m focusing on coaching to help people get past limits and anything that blocks them. At play I focus on making people laugh through improv and comedy writing. I’m new to the writing part and I haven’t fully articulated my goals with that. However it’s along the lines of noting our differences so that people understand we aren’t that different after all.

I’m hoping people remember that I made them feel that challenges truly are opportunities and I made them laugh along the way. To be connected to themselves and to the rest of the world, I suppose.

Let me tell you a short story about poor storytelling

I’ve been thinking about the formats of storytelling for so long… things like the Hero’s journey, the three act structure, Harmon’s story circle, and when things should be happening to a character according to script page number. It took me until this week to realize that I had it all backwards. If I’m doing my job as a storyteller, showing a character struggling, winning, and changing, things will align with typical beats / acts / script page numbers. Not the format dictating the character emotions and actions.

Unconditional love

Over the years, I have saved some writing prompts for journaling purposes. These come from all across the web and other resources. Today’s Journal prompt was:

What does unconditional love look like?

I wrote a bit about this in my journal. What I wrote there began to inform my thinking of the three minds.

I beleive unconditional love is the domain of the Raw self (I need to find better names for these). That’s the part of you that is connected to the rest of the people in the world, perhaps even the holy or divine. Or as the Jedi say, The Force. I think the Stoics call this The Logos. The Hindus call it The Lila. I may be combining ideas and terms here. Apologies, if so.

So our unconditional love comes from this well. It’s not tainted by the Monkey Mind or our own reason. It’s natural and everyone has it. I forget it and need to tap into it more often. The journaling, these posts and my efforts to draw more are helping.

My three minds

Yesterday, I wrote about the I and the Self. I’ve expanded a bit on that thinking and feel like I missed a third mind in my original post. Let me clarify and introduce mind number three.

Mind number 1

The personality. What you’ve grown to like, your preferences. Your strengths, weaknesses and communication styles. You tastes, sense of humor. The self you describe when you meet people, the words you write on your social media bios. This is shaped by external forces, I believe. This is the mind that “witnesses” your life, as Pete Holmes says. Witness the life you are living with feeling and observation. It’s the I in the “I don’t like myself when …”.

Mind number 2

The raw self. The thing that is most connected to the Divine (however that resonates with you, God, life-force, creativity; you pick). The raw human well of creativity and connection. What takes over when you are in flow. Or meditate. Or are surrounded by nature. Or when you’re doing a repetitive physical task and you “lose yourself”. Connecting to this mind is what really creative people are good at.

Mind number 3

Introducing mind number three, the Monkey mind. The chatter from learned behavior. All of our self doubt and loathing. Delusions of grandeur. Etc. It’s the mind that is literally telling me right now that no one will ever read this, and if they do they’ll hate it, so why bother. This mind can be so unkind to ourselves.

I think that’s my current understanding of my three minds. There’s overlap and a shared space in consciousness. When I perform Improv, I need my personality mind and raw-self mind to collaborate to spark my own creativity, for example.

I don’t quite now how to end this post at the moment, but my monkey mind is screaming at me to go watch Stranger Things, Season 3. To go to a warm safe place that doesn’t require all this thinking and exploration as that is not safe. Monkey mind / lizard brian wins at this point. I’ll have more tomorrow.

The I and the Self

Just finished Pete Holmes’ Comedy Sex God on audiobook. Pete is one of my favorite comedians and I’ve followed him via his podcast, talk show, and Crashing, his HBO show. That show was semi-autobiographical and this book is more of his history. The book centers around faith and interpretations of God. It’s an interesting read, and very funny, I recommend it.

In one of the passages the author asks questions about the I hate/like myself for …” kinds of statements we ask ourselves occasionally. Who is the I and who is the self? Isn’t it the same person? The me?

I won’t go into the details as not to spoil the ideas here. It’s one of my favorite bits in the book. Anyway it reminded me of the advice I’ve been hearing about writing for yourself. Ben Norris wrote about this topic recently.

Getting in touch with yourself to express what you’re thinking and feeling, forgetting everything else. If you dig into that well your rational self can read it later. Perhaps others can react to it as well but that’s not the goal.

Apparently Hemingway said:

Write drunk, edit sober.

Was he referring to digging into the self, without inhibition, while drunk? Then reflecting later, while sober?

I’m not drunk at the moment but I like this idea of multiple selves with the lens of writing applied to it. Write to get ideas out of one mind, so the other can understand.

Slow repetition

I’ve been thinking of going slower, unsynching, and using a minimal approach to technology. For example, I don’t want to have my personal phone connected to my work account other than my calendar. But the challenge is that I really like to see all my calendars in one app.

So I’m stuck, a bit. I’m also building a morning planning and late afternoon reflection habit. Weekly and Monthly ones too. I’ve been doing this off and on for years, but until last week I was off. I started the practice again and it’s been great. I’m transitioning to a new job and this is helping keep everything clear and on track for me.

So, back to the calendar issue. I’ve come up with a plan.

I set up an iCloud calendar for work (referred to as calendarName below). In the afternoon retrospective, I look at my work computer’s calendar, and I use the Drafts iOS app on my phone to list out my upcoming work meetings.

  • Tomorrow 9-930am Team One Standup /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 930-945amTeam Two Standup /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 1-2pm Meeting Name /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 330-4pm Meeting Name /calendarName

I then use the Fantastically Good Event Parser Action in Drafts to auto generate of these calendar events on that specific calendar.

Since the first two events for each day are standardized (they shouldn’t change much) I setup a text expander snippet. I type a short, five character string of gibberish, and it expands to the first two lines above. Why not just put them as repeating calendar events? Because I like the fact that I need to enter them each day, manually. Well, somewhat manually as I am assisted by technology (textExpander) but I’m not in a “set and forget” mode.

After I expand the snippet, I can change the text if there is a variation in the meetings. I then add whatever other meetings there might be before sending this all to my calendar with the Drafts Action.

Maybe I am shaving a yak here, but slowing down, unsyching and semi-automated mindful computing is helping build and reinforce good habits for me.

A Rainy Day Of Camping Is Better Than A Dry Day Of Work?

The family got together to celebrate Fathers Day. So much pollen!

Tsundoku

Note: This is an older post, from another blog I used to run. I can’t seem to find it’s original publication date. it was around April 2016, I guess. So here it is again.

Tsundoku

I am not sure where I first came across this word. Maybe I found it on Farnham Street or Barking up the Wrong Tree. But I love this word. Here’s a great article on Tsunduko.

A Tsundoku is a “Reading Pile”.

I nibble at the books around me, and probably finish 1 in 3 of the books that I start. I’m almost 45 years old and have been doing this for about 25 years. Until I read this article, and another on The Antilibrary I thought this was a bad thing. I felt bad for hoarding books and never fully absorbing each and every one. This contributed to my feelings of being a fraud. Like I was a poser. I had all the right books on my nightstand, but never read each of them fully.

Yet I’d go back to books over the years and re-read or progress. Cross reference and collate notes. Turns out, those are the exact reasons people argue you should aquire books, and not finish them linearly. To get the gist and connect the dots.

I’m in the middle of packing to move. Once we settle in, I should have some more room for a proper “Antilibrary”. I’m looking forward to that quite a bit.

Minimal Digital

Note: This is an older post, from another blog I used to run. I can’t seem to find it’s original publication date. So here it is again.

Minimal Digital

It’s a long story, but I have 6 email accounts. It’s amazing the cruft we accumulate over the years.

  • My original gmail account. Currently used for newsletters, signing up for services, google talk, and other odds and ends
  • My email at my domain, hosted on gmail. Currently used for family, friends, professional matters that aren’t related to the day job or Rigging Dojo.
  • My Rigging Dojo email account, used for all things related to RD
  • My work email. For work related communications.
  • My work related gmail account for sharing google docs.
  • My one off email that I use for my appleID.

This is a lot, but I can’t really see me switching to just one, or combining some of them. I appreciate the separation of concerns. And half of them are single use emails. I do, however get a lot of email that I don’t need to see.

Get bad email out of your way

The Filter messages like these functionality of gmail is a wonder. It allows you to move messages out of your inbox as they arrive. You never see them. My most common trick is to Mark as read, and Archive these kinds of emails. It’ll be there if I need to reference it later, but I don’t have to see it now. You can add a Delete step to that filter for the communications you don’t want to see now, later, or ever.

  1. Select an email you want to filter
  2. From the More menu choose Filter messages like these
  3. Check the details on how to select the correct email settings
  4. Choose Create Filter with this Search
  5. Set your options. Skip the Inbox (Archive it), Mark as read, are my go-to’s
  6. Don’t forget the “Also apply this to X matching conversations
  7. Done!

More Reduction

See what I did there?

As I noted at the top of the post, I keep one of my gmail addresses for newsletters. I am trying to reduce the amount of inputs digitally, but do value personal newsletters. In order to get them out of my email, I recently discovered a feature of Feedbin where you can use a custom email address to sign up to newsletters and have them routed to Feedbin, and not your email. Feedbin’s reading experience is much better than an email client, it’s better designed, and has less distractions.

Now with less!

Since I now have less emails vying for my attention, I decided to follow the advice from Manuel Moreale regarding a minimal email experience. This link was making the rounds on micro.blog and Patrick Rhone noted he wrote a similar post in 2009. Patrick is one of the people who has been discussing mindfulness, minimalism and technology for some time on the web.

It’s been almost ten years between these two posts. We’re still discussing minimalism in the digital space as companies continue to build “retention” into their software to keep us hooked. The “pull down to refresh” in every app on your iPhone is designed to mimic a Slot Machine.

Slot Machine

I know how the little white numbers in little red circles are affecting me, and I am seeing how it is affecting my children. I do not like it. Reducing the amount of inputs so that I only receive messages from other people is where I’m focusing right now.

Applying minimal email settings

I applied Manuel’s (and Patrick’s before him) email settings to my Mac and iPhone. I did add one extra thing. The little bar that has sort by date, and filter by unread.

Mac iOS
Mac iOS

I find the sorting and filtering to be useful. Perhaps as I continue my reduction strategy below, I won’t need them.

Next steps

I’ll be monitoring my email to see what I can cull. Slack is something that is useful for my work, but also has too many notifications. I’ve done some pruning there, but need to further explore. More on that later.

Running with the good wolf

I came across the parable of the two wolves via Eric Zimmer’s appearance on David Kadavy’s podcast.

Eric describes the parable as such:

A grandfather is talking with his grandson and he says there are two wolves inside of us which are always at battle. One is a good wolf which represents things like kindness, bravery, and love. The other is a bad wolf, which represents things like greed, hatred, and fear. The grandson stops and thinks about it for a second then he looks up at his grandfather and says, “Grandfather, which one wins?” The grandfather quietly replies, “The one you feed.”

Seems to me the one that wins is the one that you give your attention to. This is right in-line with what I’m reading in Why Buddhism Is True and The Obstacle is the Way. The former is a book about Buddhism, mindfulness practices, and how our brains have evolved. The later is about the Stoics, and how their writings from thousands of years ago apply to the present day.

Both seem to point to the modern practice of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I’ve never gone to a Therapist, so I may be speaking completely out of turn here. But I’m seeing correlations in all of these topics (including the ‘being present’ focus of Improv as well).

On that podcast Eric also mentioned that it’s not about caging or killing the bad wolf. I’m paraphrasing that. Seems like it exists in all of us, and from what I’ve read in the texts mentioned above The Bad Wolf is the Monkey Mind. That sometimes unkind chattering in the background of our minds.

You can’t stop feeling a particular emotion, or thinking a thought in your subconscious. Acknowledge it, label the emotion, and choose to act in a way that is not harmful to self or others.

There’s something in this overlap of the Venn diagram that I’m very interested in for exploration. On a “crawl, walk, run” scale, I’m certainly crawling here, and I am striving to be running with the good wolf.

Writing User Stories quickly

Working on Agile development projects I tend to write a lot of user stories. A User Story is information a developer uses to help them understand what functionality needs to be built.

They generally follow this convention:

As a blank, I need to blank, so that I can blank.

Here are some examples:

  • As a user, I need to create an account, so that I can edit my personal information.
  • As a user, I need to log into my account, so that I can begin my session.
  • As a user, I need to log out of my account, so that I can end my session.
  • As a user, I need to create a post on my blog, so that I can publish my thoughts

The first couple examples there are very similar from a purely sentence structure point of view. That last one is a little cheeky, I admit.

There’s a ton of info and debate about good user stories and ones that could be better. But this post isn’t about that. It is about, well, let me explain it with a User Story.

As a Project Manager, I need to quickly write many similarly formatted sentences, so that I can describe what functionality needs to be built.

Enter text expansion.

I can’t tell you why it took me so long to figure this one out. I use text expansion a lot. It occurred to me today that writing user stories is something text expansion would be great at.

Text Expansion works like this. First, you setup a snippet; just a short body of text. You type said snippet and it expands to a large body of text.

For example, I set up a snippet for the first 5 words of Lorem Ipsum. When I type “;li5”, it expands to “Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet”. This works anywhere you can write text on your computer (and most of the places you can write text on iPad/iOS as well).

I have snippets for - My email addresses. - My home address. - My phone numbers (work, cell). - My work offices addresses. - And a whole lot more.

What’s the big deal? Is this going out of my way to be lazy. Maybe, but I expanded 272 snippets which saved me 48 minutes over the last month. I’m not a power user, so many folks have better stats.

As a reader, I need you to get back to your point, so that I don’t close this browser tab.

OK, I think you see where I’m going. Typing (nearly) the same thing over and over again is ripe for automation. One of the magic bits about the TextExpander app is that it allows you to add fields to specific parts of the text.

I’ve added fields to all the places I have blank in my User Story text. I then type the ;aus snippet and I get this handy pop-up.

GIve text expansion a try, I hope it saves you some time!

Sarasota / Ringling

2019 Week 14, Weeknotes #07

  • I’ve missed a couple weeks of Weeknotes. Bummer.
  • I started the Runners Alley Run Club. We meet Monday and Wednesday evenings to do a group couch to 5k sort of program. We’re prepping to run the Memorial Day 5k at Casco Brewery.
  • I missed the Armando performance which was the culmination of my level 201 Improv course with Stranger than Fiction. I had a fever and head-cold. I missed the performance at the end of 101 as well, as weather kept delaying it through the holidays. Anyway, I’m going to the jams as much as I can, and reading through the Upright Citizens Brigade book. I can’t make the next run of improv classes as I’m doing the run club, so I’ll have to wait for the summer run of classes. I should follow up to see what the schedule might be.
  • I missed my call with Bob, so we need to get the next one on the books ASAP.

It was going to be

  • The place I posted my fiction
  • The place where I put up courses to help creative people
  • The website that I used as my coaching business
  • The place for my long form articles on creativity and technology
  • The website where I posted MacOS and iOS tips and had a newsletter to drive people to hire me as a consultant
  • The place where I posted tips and tricks to using a specific blogging platform
  • A website about improv comedy

But it’s really just been sitting there. Sometimes doing the above, in part but never in full. It’s not the websites fault. It’s mine. And really it’s not a fault. I’ve bitten off more than I could chew. I don’t have the time, energy, and/or attention needed to do any of the above full time. I’m becoming OK with that. I can tinker with any of the above, and more, and not have to make a major project out of it. Just be.

Sometimes, these items I’ve posted help people. That’s fantastic, and the reasons I’ve been writing these posts. I’m grateful to have helped someone get past a hurdle (technical or otherwise).

I’m letting the Where the Light Gathers domain expire, as I just need to close the door on this chapter. I’m letting go of all the things it could have been, and that’s a bit painful. But it’s for the best so I can close a mental loop and forgive myself for not doing all the above, full time.

I’ll move the posts from that site over to this blog at some point.