New Year Productivity

2018 Productivity and writing

Its been a while since my last post, especially after posting day after day for a while.  It’s over a month, I had taken a break from the book, the first initial draft had been done and then I did Nanowrimo, the book was put on hold and Christmas and New Year happened.

I asked a friend to have a read through of the draft, which I had already started to think to myself there were points that could be improved. I haven’t had all the feedback yet but the general gist was there were a few things that could be tweaked. Feedback is a gift.

The next step I need to print off in its entirety and read through, taking a book to get published being one of 2018 goals.

I took a different twist with regards my 2018 goals,  I decided to pay money for a notebook/ planner.  I saw one planner that looks really good but discovered it was only quarterly and expensive and only available in America, the minimum delivery charge made a 90-day journal far more expensive than a year journal for one I did get.

The journal I ended up with is called inspire now which I can say I am pleasantly pleased with.  Even if it is making me do daily tasks towards my goals.

As for my goals, that’s for another post as I have a couple more tasks to achieve today before I can get my reward of a can of diet coke, thanks to dry January.

[32] An extra hour

Turns out the nice train with the tables was a one off. Northern rail again twart my cunning plans. I seem to be more productive in the mornings than the evenings and therefore I am going to try a later train. It might be only an hour more in the morning, meaning staying an hour later but if it moves me towards my goals it’s definetly worth the sacrifice. As it’s Friday tomorrow I’ll start Monday. Who wants to still be in the office later than needed on a Friday.

Update: This is the first blog written entirely on my phone on the wordpress app.

[29] The room where time stops

I’ve always wanted a room in which time doesn’t move. It just freezes the very moment you enter to the moment you leave. I could take anything to this room even a laptop with the internet. Obviously, this doesn’t exist but it would be amazing and oh things you could do. You could learn everything you ever dreamed of. I recall this as I briefly crammed in some stretching this morning and looked around the living room. I see lots of unfinished things, stuff that shouts to me “Oi Martin what about me, when you going to sort me out. There’s a Xbox voucher for 3 months access, that’s been sat there for months, there’s a mindful gift I got for my birthday off my beautiful daughter in July than needs a daily commitment which I’ve given about three continuous days
There’s a novel writing book, the drawing pins box from yesterday, a lean in 15 book, which has never had a recipe made from it. The Guardian paper that I bought yesterday as part of the 99 tasks and for the free virtual reality headset, the baskets in the living room are another thing entirely. They are crammed with hidden things out of sight but I know they are watching. Ok if I only had my special room that I could drag all these things into them and come out seconds later with every open loop closed and that’s just the living room. Every room I enter the voices call to me. “Pick me Martin pick me” but all the voices are the same level there isn’t one that shouts with authority ” I am the one to do next, you know that” occasionally the voices annoy I find a window to do some ‘organisation’. I choose at random what gets my attention, I choose over whelming tasks I open the basket and piles things out. There is no time room to take them to. They get spread out across the floor, these items of curiosity. I get distracted. I make vague inroads and time is sucked from me. The place is a mess. I collate all my piles of wonders together, they go back in the basket the lids shuts better than it before ever so slightly. That’s a success right?, I con myself .
Even now as I write this on the train, I’d decided I wouldn’t write the book this morning but I would read a novel. I don’t read enough, I berate myself , but I am now doing something else instead.

I’m silently screaming in my head. I wonder if I didn’t take on a single new thing how long it would take to put all the curiosities and things I started, to bed. Life doesn’t work like that does it. Can you press the pause button and crack on with other things? and if you can which one do you do when there is so many. As I metophocially drag the list of unfinished things to the room where time stops.

[25] A New Dawn

A momentous day, I have managed to blog for 25 days in a row.  So to recap

Writing blog – 25 days

Meditate – 25 days

Brain Training – 7 Days ( I don’t recall missing one but it is saying I have done only 7 in a row)

The writing, editing of the book hasn’t been as consistent as I would like. A better approach is needed, with all the others items they are specific, the writing and corrections aren’t. I started with an hour a day and realised we tend to live busy lives, but that’s just an excuse.  I wrote in the morning on the train, I wrote at lunchtime but it certainly wasn’t a habit, it tailed off.  That, I need to redress. I am sitting here thinking the best approach. Writing for an hour, an exact hour is difficult. I get on the train, I might have been listening to a podcast or audiobook while walking. I might have started browsing the internet, looking at Twitter or my emails and then start writing. The journey is around forty-five minutes how much of this do I write for?  Even the days I write at lunch, I walk to the Library and back and write in between. The idea hits me while I type this, something I tell my daughter to use and I ignore myself, time boxing. The Pomodoro technique, small chunks of time where I do nothing but write. I can make this into a habit. I will endeavour to write in 15-minute segments.

(Words 250)

I wanted to continue. I had to cut so many words to fit it all into 250. I am excited about tomorrow. To throw away the shackles of oppression with limited words. To be able to compete with myself,  to see how many fifteen minute segments I can accomplish.

(Words 300) 🙂

[19] The house of cards

House of cards. I can feel it starting to fall to bits. After yesterday’s blip with not stretching, I still haven’t done it today yet. It’s 6.23 PM I’m just catching the train home, so not going to be in till at least half seven. I had stuff to finish before I could leave. I’ve left myself with quite a lot to do tonight. I started a Data Science course that the deadline is midnight tonight, only discovering today after thinking I had all day tomorrow. I’m currently on 53% needing 70% for a pass but I’m not one of these people where I’d settle for 71% if I can do something about it. I didn’t bring my laptop either today. I’m getting the blog out of the way. I still need to write or do some corrections as well. Lovely Fri night ahead of me it seems. I thought I would share what I’m currently listening to, reading and watching. The audiobook I’m listening to David Eddings Domes of Fire (The Tamuli). I have a sneaky suspicion I might have read it. I’m reading book 2 of the Dresden Files, Jim Butcher Fools Moon it’s about a wizard maybe I can add a review when finished. I’m watching scene 8 on Netflix after a recommendation. I’ve also started My Dad wrote a porno series 2. So plenty going on, but some of these I can listen to at work and on the commute.

Its now just gone 10PM, I completed the course with a score of 86%

[Words 250]

[11] Getting Harder and finding Misery

It all nearly fell apart, after maintaining my initial daily routines, write, write, read meditate, stretch and not always in that order, I went to bed to meditate as I hadn’t done it at that point.  This all seems to stem from swimming in the morning, as I messed up my routine. I fell asleep with headphones in, woke late to find 10% battery, and managed to not set an alarm. Not the greatest of starts, however, I had technically meditated subconsciously. It still counts. The streak continues.

It feels like it’s starting to fall apart in slow motion. I am finishing off the 250 words, which isn’t a lot I must admit. It’s 23.18 the first part written somewhat 16 hours ago, that’s ludicrous. I have spent, the evening watching Misery (spoiler alert) after a trip to the gym. I now wonder if this happens to all budding writers. I don’t recall watching it before other than the French and Saunders parody. I would never have coped with typewriters, my typing has so many typos. How many people have been constrained by the typewriter I wonder.  My writing has so many edits, so many changes I can’t start to imagine how challenging it was to write a book before the computer.  I can’t maintain meditation or writing at the hour approaching midnight when I insist on getting up at five thirty. Something will give, I still strive for the elusive 21 days. The magical number of days I have been told forms a habit.

(words 250)





[10] Glowing boxes of distraction

It’s 7 AM, It’s not as cold this morning, there are no smoke rings to blow, Unfortunately. I am contemplating do I do too much or do I do too little.  I haven’t done my stretches for my bad back, I haven’t meditated or had breakfast. The reason was I got up and went for a swim at the local gym. I feel good for that but I have put myself under pressure because of it, or have I? I read something yesterday in a fleeting glance about people if they don’t go home after working in a dead job and not work on their dreams there is something wrong with them. I am not saying I am in a dead job here, just should I do more. Probably.  I paraphrase as didn’t capture the exact words at the time, and I imagine I could trawl through lots of things and still not find it. That is the way with the connected society.  I listened to a video ( by Simon Sinkek , look him up) before bed last night on the virtues that people don’t know how to talk to each other and mobile phones have created these environments where people never give each other the time they deserve and how it to the detriment of society. I am sat on a train full of people stirring into little glowing boxes, no one talks and it’s not the quiet carriage they don’t have those on Northern Rail, he might have a point.

(Words 250)