When Everything is a Priority…

Nothing is a priority.

I’m reminding myself this more than anything. I have so many ideas that I could see becoming something real and magically, but that doesn’t mean a lick of salt if I don’t prioritize one and create it. Napoleon Hill, author of Think and Grow Rich, said it best “First comes thought; then organization of that thought, into ideas and plans; then transformation of those plans into reality. The beginning, as you will observe, is in your imagination.”

The logic is fairly straight forward:

Divide our time into too many “buckets” and we’ll have a whole lot of unfinished, mostly empty projects. In the words of Jar Jar Binks, “Dissen gonna be bery messy! Me no watchin!”

Or we can chose one project, a few at most, and pour all our time and energy into them until we’ve finished them and then work on the next one.

It’s like wanting passive income, or multiple revenue streams. We don’t just start right out the gate with a dozen income streams at once.First we’ve got to get one thing going super well. Are we creating something valuable? Are we creating something worth buying? Are we sharing what we are doing? Good. Once we find one thing that works, then we start another.

I’m always tripping on this because I love making things and there’s always new ideas and interesting avenues to take.

You can use a thousand boards of wood to being building a thousand houses, or you could use all the boards and build a single killer house.

Ask yourself:

• “Out of all the projects I start, how many do I actually finish?”

• “What’s one thing I want to prioritize and finish right now?”

If everything is a priority, then nothing is a priority.

Amplifying Skills

There are many types of skills and knowledge in general that, if learned, can amplify everything that you do.

Improving your ability to communicate, for example. What part of life doesn’t involve some form of written, graphic, or verbal communication? Think about it: blogging, writing emails, tweeting, caption, website copy, speeches, journaling, wit and banter among friends, sharing stories about yourself with relationships, getting your ideas across, job hunting, pitching clients… communication is at the heart of what it means to be human.

Health is another great skill that has reach across your life. Eating well, exercising, and resting can all increase the quality and longevity of your life. How can you put a quantifiable impact on that?

One big part of being multidisciplinary is to cultivate these types of foundational skills.

How to Learn

How to Think



Even just one of these could improve your life in immeasurable ways.


Time is certainly our most valuable resource.

What we do with our time determines who we are. It’s easy for me to say that but saying that doesn’t always feeling it.

Knowing what I do with my time doesn’t always equal spending my time wisely.

I often find myself compartmentalizing my day and todo’s into different categories and desires — work list, learning list, passions list, book list, relationship list — which can give the false impression that I have an infinite amount of time.

In reality time spent on one thing, takes away available time for the others.

Spending our time is like packing a suitcase.

Trying to pack more stuff into one day is a like packing a suitcase when you’re traveling. You can fit only as much as much as the suitcase has room for. You can try to fit more, sitting on it, going at it at different angles, and breaking out a full on sweat by trying to get your suitcase to close.

The more you stuff your suitcase, the less functional it becomes.

There is only so much time you can dedicate to the stuff you have to do, let alone want to do.

You can compartmentalize a lot of things, but time isn’t one of them — time ticks on, whether you are using it on things you love or not.

Quality time is about doing what you love, with the people you love, and doing that more than on things you dislike.

Stuffing our lives with more things doesn’t amount to more quality living.

But if focus on what matters (and less on what doesn’t) we can have more space for them to grow.

Commit to Daily Self-Cultivation

“In order to start, we must make a decision. This decision is a commitment to daily self-cultivation. We must make a strong connection to our inner selves outside matters are superfluous.” — Ding Ming-Dao, 365 Tao

I wish “listen to your heart” didn’t sound so trite. It’s such an important principle.

Listening to your heart means committing to who you want to be. It means committing to your practice and continuing, no matter what challenges you face along the way.

In order to create change, we must commit.

Commit to respecting your dreams.

Commit to following through with your values.

And commit to stand up when you fail.

Otherwise, anything that comes our way might tempt us and distract us from our main task.

Keep Going

“If you’re going through hell, keep going.”Winston Churchill

It’s really hard to get back on top of things when you get derailed.

You build up all this momentum—finally working out consistently again, or making progress on an idea, or two weeks of taking an online coding class—then something gets in the way and whoosh—you face plant.

I find it helpful to think of failing and being inconsistent with a habit (or goal) as part of the process. It reminds me of meditation. The goal isn’t to remove your thoughts, but be aware that you are thinking them, and then going back to your breath.

The goal of any habit isn’t to do it perfectly, the goal is to stick to it, no matter what. (Including messing up or missing a day.)

Actually the goal of any habit isn’t the habit at all, it’s what the habit does for us. Every habit, good or bad, creates an outcome. Journaling every day has it’s day-to-day benefits, but the true benefit is having years worth of your own thoughts and ideas you can look back on and let guide you forward.

Getting lazy (or more likely overbooked) and skipping a week of working out or practicing your code isn’t going to do you any favors, but it’s not a dead end either. Fail, get back up. Fail, try again.

The goal isn’t to be perfect, but to keep going.

Mastery is a Choice

“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.” Socrates

The more I know the less I know. That’s the excited (and occasionally overwhelming) thing about knowledge and skill. The deeper you go towards mastery, the more you unlock and the more secrets there are to uncover.

Mastery isn’t a finite state. It’s a continuous curve that never quite touches the sides. Discover is endless. Which keeps things interesting if you stay flexible and curious. There’s always another mountain to explore after you get to the top of the one you are on. There’s always another puzzle to solve.

Mastery is also a choice. We can’t learn everything, mostly because we don’t have the time.

Also time changes what is possible to mastery. Computers as we know it are less than a hundred years old (two-hundred if you start with Babbage). Think of all of the wonderful things that you focus on and master from this invention.

Well, not all. But that makes what you do choose all the more special.


“It is one of the blessings of old friends that you can afford to be stupid with them.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

The best types of friends are the ones are the ones you can hang out and do absolutely nothing with and still manage to have a good time.

The tricky thing about friends is they ripen with age, so the longer you have a friendship, the better it is over time.

I’m finding it more and more difficult to make new friends as I’m getting older (maybe I’m not trying hard enough) which I’ve heard was a thing but i didn’t believe it. Leaning on an activity, such as yoga or D & D, or dancing helps. I guess it’s easier to make friends with someone you have at least one thing (your hobby) in common with.

Some people you just hit it off with right away. These are the ones worth making effort for (no matter what’s going on at work or in your life).

When in Doubt

All-nighters and weekend warrior sprints might get the work done, but the question is, is the work any good? Could the work have been better if we were well-rested?

It’s difficult to be creative when you are exhausted and overworked.

My work is always at its most mediocre when I’m sleep deprived.

The same goes for decision-making. It’s far easier to make careless choices when your mind and body are on the back-burner.

I wonder if sleep exists merely because otherwise we would either overwork or indulge ourselves into an early grave.

Instead, sleep gives us a required break, a hard reboot that has clear (and some unclear) ramifications if we ignore it.

Sleep is a great way to reset our mindset and emotions too. Sleep washes away feels of frustration and anger. We talk of time healing all wounds but I think perhaps sleep is the one doing the healing work, or at least gets the party started.

When in doubt, go to sleep.

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STAY Rested, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1870

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Giving Up

A lot of times, the only thing standing in the way of someone who succeeds versus someone who fails is the willingness to try.

I’m sure, like me, you’ve heard that a thousand times.

And yet we still give in to our fears. We overprepare or overthink ourselves out of doing it.

Or we give up after we try the tiniest amount and do poorly, so we quit.

But the only thing we are quitting is opportunity when we stop or not try.

Even if we go after something and fail, we can still take our hard lessons learned and apply them to the next idea we have.

Failure shouldn’t decrease our enthusiasm, only change it’s direction.

Not seeing our ideas through is much worse than failing and looking bad.

STAY BOLD, Keep Pursuing— Josh Waggoner | Daily Blog #1868

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Finding Calm

Being surrounded by uncertainty doesn’t mean you have to be uncertain.

Are you taking care of your body?

Are you honing your mind?

Are you working on your character through kindness, love, and generosity?

Are you surrounding yourself with things that nourish you or drain you?

Then what misfortune can touch you? Nothing can keep a certain steadfast spirit down for long.