How to stop overthinking and make magic happen

The line between thinking and overthinking is a thin one. It’s hard for anyone to discern where they are relative to it. Err on the side of action, and build momentum. Sometimes, you have to dumb it down. There’s no shortage of sayings, like, “Done is better than perfect,” or, “No time like the present,” […]

You should only compete with one person: yourself

Source: The Mushroom Kingdom It’s easy to compare yourself against other people especially as they flood our screens with images. But when you compete against other people, you judge yourself based on their values and metrics. The problem with this is even if you win, you only do something that’s important to them, not you. […]

How average first drafts become extraordinary

The myth of great art is that it’s created through spurts of inspiration, genius, and epiphanies. This isn’t always the case. Rather, great art can evolve from what seems like very ordinary, average, rough drafts, often created during very ordinary moments. Not unlike an agile sprint or a lean startup, artists will then get feedback, […]

Why you should work on one thing at a time

I grasped one of the my important productivity insights when I worked at Xtreme Labs: the importance of doing one thing at a time. Our VP of Engineering, Farhan Thawar, was a proponent of “monotasking,” and he warned against multitasking and distraction. Professor Gloria Mark from the University of California, Irvine, told Fast Company that […]

Consider your conveniences

You’re running late for a meeting. You push the elevator button. Ugh, the closest one is still 23 floors up. You reach into your pocket. You pull out your phone. Peter sent you a message. Ahhhhh. What did he say? You slide the screen and check. Peter: Hey, I got some tickets to the Jays […]

Creative excess leads to creative success

There is no substitute for creative waste. It’s a part of the process I’m listening to Pharrell speak with NPR when he says he doesn’t know where his hits come from, or why they were hits in the first place. They just work. He laughs and calls himself the Mr. Magoo of music. I find […]

Choose or others will choose for you

The old saying goes, “Those who stand for nothing fall for anything.” Or, more appropriately, as Madame Gao tells Wilson Fisk in Daredevil: “Man cannot be both savior and oppressor, light and shadow, one has to be sacrificed for the other. Choose, and choose wisely, or others will choose for you.” No matter what you […]