Choosing to not be tired

One of the stupidly obvious realisations I had when working through my tasks in the focus course today is “I am not very productive when I’m tried” I know big shock and not real surprise there. I’m sure you’ve had this realisation before and are aware of this truth but do you live like it?

What I mean is do you take steps to insure that you aren’t tried so that you can be productive? Do you choose not to be tired?

I haven’t been. I’d go to bed late, not have a regular time to go to sleep, not switch off my devices a suitable time before going to bed, not eat the best food for slow burning energy and so on and so on. If you looked at my lifestyle you’d almost think I wanted to be tired rather than the opposite. That’s the problem with default behaviours like fiddling about on the internet before you go to bed. They may seem harmless [no one died from me spending an extra 30 mins on the internet two nights ago] but they can lead to some greater option not being taken.

Well today I choose not to be tired [as much as within my power]. I’m not going to let my actions result in me being tired and unproductive, I’m going to mould my actions so that I am lively and full of energy for the next day, ready to do my best work.

Practical steps

Some practical steps I’m taking include

  1. Setting a regular bed time
  2. turning on do not disturb mode earlier on my devices [7pm]
  3. switching off electronic devices an hour before bed
  4. eating less junk food and more healthy foods
  5. leaving a great time between eating and sleeping
  6. drinking more water throughout the day

I’ve already implemented some of these steps and noticed a difference. I’d welcome any extra ideas you have.

link: 10 minimalist living tips

One of my “hipster” internet gems (as in things I seem to be aware of which other people aren’t) is Raymund Tamayo. He is a blogger in the Philippians who is also a christian. I haven’t always followed him closely but when I have, I’ve found some hidden gems of posts. He has recently written a series with 10 tips of minimalist living (click the headline to go to his post) and they’re worth checking out. I’m slowly reading through them, one a day, and really enjoying them.

Why not check it out and send him a message saying hi.

Over on Churchmag I covered this brilliant new iOS (currently iPhone only) bible app. It has a beautiful clean interface and makes use of top quality typography. It costs unlike some other apps and lacks many features but I love the interface (especially the simple guestures and double tap search).

Click the link to check out the full review and if you have an iPhone, consider giving a few bucks to the developers.

Stuck in by past choices

This month I got a notification from my webhost telling me that my webhosting will expire at the end of the month unless I renew.

When I picked up my webhost I went with the cheapest option because…well I was starting out with wordpress and paying for my blogging so I wanted the cheapest incase it went wrong. I had also just started working and didn’t really budget well.

Fast forward and now I host other sites (including for other people) so it made sense to pick up a larger hosting package from a compeititor. The only issue here is that my webhost also provided the domain name and hold ownership of the domain.

This means I can’t switch my website to a different webhost so I either pay more money to keep this site here or I move it and use a different domain name.

That’s not a big deal except I have a few good links to this domain such as to the digital version of the storyline productivity schedule and a few other textexapnder articles. This means that people would no longer find them. That’s a shame.

The moral of the story is not to get stuck with your choice when you start out, make sure you think about how you will grow in the future and insure you can expand. I don’t know what I’m going to do but by the end of the month this site will either

1) still be the same (and I’ll be a few pounds poorer)

2) have moved to a new domain (but everything will still be here)

3) Have been burned to the ground!!! and I’ll start again with a new blog


I don’t know which I will choose.


What I Learnt About Health, Fitness and Smart Devices From a Cancer Survivor

The link above is from a long, sometimes heavy, but also uplifting and inspiring blog post from Federico Viticci of Mac Stories on how he recovered from Cancer with the help of his iPhone.

It resounded with me as I have been on a bit of a personal mission to put on good weight and get healthier as well using technology. It resulted in me using a variety of the latest tools and apps to try and get fit. I started writing journal entries about my performance on Day One to track my progress with the intention of writing up a longer post on my experience.

The truth is that with all these cool tech items including food tracking application, pedometers, workout programs on my phone and activity tracking from my smartwatch, I didn’t make any long term significant changes. [I’m betting many people reading this are similar].

There were a few reasons including things like people questioning me when they saw me food logging (people really find it strange when a thin guy logs his food. Apparently, only fat people should be doing this [that’s not true but it’s certainly been people’s reactions to me].

But the true reason was….motivation.

When you read Federicco’s post you can’t help but notice that before his cancer he didn’t have the motivation to get fit, afterwards he did (and in bucket loads). I go through stints of motivation but they don’t last a long time. If I really want to achieve my fitness goals then I need to boost my motivation. The apps, fitness tracking tools and other accessories can help and I am going back to using them again, but the key factor in mine (or yours) success will be motivation.

[No question today, just a reminder to check out Federico’s post, it’s a really interesting and great read]



Quick thoughts on the Apple Watch

The second pre announcement of the Apple watch has occurred (yup, they’ve not released it yet but pre announced the watch) and a lot of people have had very strong reactions to the watch. Loosely there are three reactions

  1. This is the end to civilisation as we know it [people are going to stop interacting with each other]
  2. No one will buy this, Apple will go out of business
  3. This is the best thing ever ever ever
  4. [bonus:] This will distract me

I am exaggerating each point a little but only a little. In truth, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything pull such a strong reaction…maybe Google glass. But I suspect that none of these things are true. So here are some quick thoughts from me.

  1. The Apple watch will sell “well” no it won’t be another iPhone but it maybe another iPad, in addition the iPhone didn’t start off selling well. Some people will buy the edition but just like a solid Gold rolex, I doubt you or I will see one (often?)

  2. Civilisation won’t end. (going out on a limb there)

  3. People will still interact with each other

  4. The watch may be less distracting than a phone. A more discrete device for quick glances or actions may help you to take action quicker and get back to whatever you’re doing. It may also encourage you to choose more carefully which notifications you get and reduce distractions. [I found that with Android wear]

  5. The Apple watch will be less distracting than Android wear. Google makes money by distracting you, Apple makes money by selling you hardware.

  6. The price will hold off all but the early adopters.

  7. Only the early adopters would buy it anyway. [See android wear]

  8. The interface will be key here. Android wear’s interface is okay but is quite like a phone interface on your wrist. The Apple watch is different, It sounds worse to me but I am waiting to try it out. I thought a touchscreen keyboard would be worse but now I love it.

  9. It will almost exclusively only do things you can do with your phone (to start with at least).

  10. Some of those things will be much better with a device on your wrist [deleting spam emails]

  11. Some will be worse [notifications from your free with in app purchase game]

  12. The square screen is the right direction. I didn’t think so when I first saw smart watches come out but now I’m more convinced it is. The screen is better for an interface and my favourite watch faces aren’t the imitation watch faces but the unique ones that make the most of the data and flexibility of the screen. The work just as well on a square and circular screen.

  13. It’s still to early to say. Many people want to have a firm opinion on this subject, after all they get paid to have a strong for or against opinion [plus ARGH TECHNOLOGY!!! sells really well]. In all likelihood this will be something which is both good and bad and we’ll have to look at the long term effects to really know. Take smart phones, we’ve seen the benefit of being more connected with people all around the world, not having to take some many different items with us (map, camera, notebook) and so on, but we’ve also seen the reduction of communication round the table and increased anxiety for Fear Of Missing Out.


So let’s wait and see eh.

What are your thoughts on the Apple Watch/Smartwatches in general?


photo giveaway churchmag

Why I’m giving away my best photos with Churchmag

For the last few months I’ve been working on a special photography project. It’s pushed me, challenged me and made me improve my photography ability to get it done.

As projects do, it has changed and evolved over time through a series of different ideas but this weekend will finally see this idea come to life. It’s a project I have code named “Photodesk” but the name is unimportant. What matters is who it is for an the problem it solves. So here it is.

This weekend I’m teaming up with Churchmag to giveaway some of my best photos, ones which have been constructed to help support text and messages to subscribers of the Churchmag newsletter. To help equip the church and christians around the world

That’s it. we’re giving away my best photos for you to use in blog posts, social media updates, church bullitins and more.
Click this link to sign up for the newsletter

Play Hurt

The amateur believes that she must have all her ducks in a row before she can launch her start-up or compose her symphony or design her iPhone app.

The professional knows better. … Athletes play hurt. Warriors fight scared. The professional takes two aspirin and keeps on truckin’.

This kicks off a great post by John Saddington on getting started, and keeping trucking. In the past I think I’ve been pretty good at the former…now I need to get better at the latter. To push through the pain barrier and just keep swimming.

Check out the whole post, it’s worth it.