The Philosophy of Doing

Derick Sivers:

Try it

If you’re in doubt about something that’s not in your life, try it. Things are so different in practice versus in theory. The only way to know is to experience it yourself.

Get rid of it

If you’re in doubt about something that’s in your life already, get rid of it. Not just things, this goes for identities, habits, goals, relationships, technology, and anything else. Default to not having it, then see how you do without.

No really, get rid of it

Err on the side of no. Get rid of it. Start with a clean slate, If it was a mistake, you’ll get it back with a renewed enthusiasm.

❂ 2019 Podcast Roundup

I love podcasts. I like listening while I am exercising, working outside and especially while driving. Although I am continually trying new podcasts, these are the ones I currently listen to the most.

The List

  • 99% Invisible – I love listening to Roman Mars and thinking about how we choose to design the world around us. High quality and I learn something every episode.
  • The Accidental Creative – Although I wouldn’t consider myself a creative, I really like Todd Henry’s continual focus on doing the work.
  • Accidental Tech Podcast – Listener since episode one! My favorite pundits talking about what’s going on in technology. Nothing beats a good John Siracusa critique.
  • The Art of Manliness – I listen to most episodes, but occasionally skip ones that don’t look interesting.
  • Criminal – Another podcast I have been following since the first episode. Not to be missed.
  • Derek Sivers Podcast – A recent addition. Very short episodes to make you think. Some of my favorite will be posted on this blog.
  • Focused – Started listening when they changed from Free Agents. Even bought their calendar.
  • Grace To You: Pulpit Podcast – The only religious podcast on the list. Very conservative and Biblically based. Thought provoking.
  • Invisible Office Hours – I am a fan of Paul Jarvis and many of his ideas on the world of work.
  • Order of Man – I skip lots of these episodes (All the "Ask Me Anythings" and most of the "Friday Field Notes"), but some of the interviews are fantastic.
  • Bregman Leadership Podcast – I add a lot of books to my "to read" list from here.
  • Under the Radar – The only other tech-based podcast I listen to. I am not an independant developer, but I can live vicariously though them.

The App

I have exclusively used Overcast to listen to podcasts since Version 1.0. Highly recommended. I usually listen at 1.5x speed with Smart Speed and Voice Boost enabled.

The Speakers

I most often listen on my truck stereo through Bluetooth. While mowing, I use and recommend 3M WorkTunes and while working out I use the Jabra Move Wireless Stereo Headset.

Less Stuff… Freedom

Joshua Becker writing for Becoming Minimalist

Not only does shopping not deliver freedom, it brings the exact opposite. Each purchase we make adds extra worry to our lives. Every physical item we own represents one more thing that can be broken, scratched, or stolen. The sense of freedom that comes from owning less is truly refreshing. Indeed, it is more than a feeling; it is a reality that can define your life.

Requiring Less

Garrick van Burren via MinimalMac:

The less you require to maintain your desired standard of living, the longer you can maintain it without additional income. This isn’t about celebrating a poverty mentality. Quite the opposite. It’s an acknowledgment​ that once you find what works, you can remove everything else.


My own plans are made. While I can, I sail east in the Dawn Treader. When she fails me, I paddle east in my coracle. When she sinks, I shall swim east with my four paws. And when I can swim no longer, if I have not reached Aslan’s country, or shot over the edge of the world into some vast cataract, I shall sink with my nose to the sunrise.

~ C.S. Lewis in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader

Effectiveness is a Habit

Peter Drucker in the The Effective Executive:

Effectiveness is a habit. Rather, it is a complex of five habits of the mind, that have to be acquired to be an effective executive. These five habits are

  1. Effective execs know where their time goes. They work systematically at managing the little of their time that can be brought under their control.
  2. Effective execs focus on outward contribution. They gear their efforts to results rather than to work. They start out with the question, "what results are expected of me?" rather than with the work to be done, let alone with its technique and tools.
  3. Effective execs build on strengths – their own, those of their superiors, peers, subordinates and those of the organization. They do not build on weaknesses nor do they start out with the things that they cannot do.
  4. Effective execs concentrate on the few major areas where superior performance will produce outstanding results. They force themselves to set priorities and stay with these priority decisions. They know that they have no choice but to do first things first, and second things not at all. The alternative is to get nothing done.
  5. Effective execs make dissenting decisions. They know that this is above all, a matter of system – right steps in the right sequence. They know that an effective decision is always a judgment based on "dissenting opinions" rather than on "consensus on the facts". And they know that to make many decisions fast means to make the wrong decisions. What is needed are few, but fundamental decisions. What is needed is the right strategy rather than razzle-dazzle tactics.

Where do you go when you need ideas?

Todd Henry talks about keeping a Commonplace Book on the Accidental Creative:

A Commonplace Book is single place where you keep ideas, quotes, inspiring thoughts and other potential useful information for regular review and potential repurposing.

Principles for keeping a Commonplace Book:

  1. Keep only one and make it single purpose
  2. Review it regularly
  3. Use it to generate ideas
  4. Don’t be too selective [on what you add to the book]

[Overcast® Link]