76: A Failure Across the Board

Me: “I’d like to schedule a personal retreat followed by a Greycation for myself.”

@MacSparky and @mikeschmitz: “Ta da!!!”

I appreciate the mind reading!


Ooh, I really like David’s 6 monthly planner desktop wallpaper linked in the show notes; what a great idea.

How would I go about creating something like that? OmniGraffle?

About David’s self-criticism on his lack of productivity during his trip to WWDC… 1) From the outsider point of view - but also as a reader of his newsletter! - I would say the exact opposite: David seemed at his top productivity during that week, with live podcasts of MPU and Focused, an interview of an Apple executive, and obvious many parallel discussions and on-site tests that are a once-in-a-year opportunity. I bet that Jocelyn K. Glei would remind David that he did not have any productivity issue at all! He just got temporarily confused (during Focused #76) regarding his own expectations and goals for that WWDC week: he had decided to move the needle on his Nerd side of his life, with logical consequences of his other roles (as a lawyer). He sent fewer e-mails, but he met Apple big shots. He was productive, did deep work, hurried slowly, and so on. This one week will certainly trigger tons of ticked OMF tasks from now on.

On being productive during trips: I travel a lot and try to apply most of MPU & Focused advice. I live in Brazil, and most of my trips involve 10-12 hours flights, with many hours of jet lag. The way I deal with it after years of (failed) experiences is close to Mike’s comments: I change my routines totally. I defer most of my tasks in OmniFocus to the week after the trip, which also overcomes OMF’s limitations with time zones. I plan that I will not actually do any of my routine tasks. I journal in degraded mode, for instance, based on photos in Day One (also, rapid logging / BuJO make much more sense in a trip). I schedule at most ONE due task during an air flight, the one that you really have to deliver when the plane has landed. At this stage, I am even considering turning to paper-based task management and journaling, specifically for trips, to be efficient at a very different pace imposed by airports, poor connectivity (and sync problems), flights, and meeting abroad. I am considering maintaining digital tools to communicate, manage the meetings (take notes) and the trip (geolocation, boarding passes, Uber, etc.), and take photos. But I suspect that the very different constraints and routines may justify that my usual tools for self-management could be slightly counter-productive for me, and add more stress with irrelevant contexts than be useful. My main trouble would be to reintegrate everything in OMF once the trip is over.


I’ll get post up at MacSparky this week with a sample