A Good Watch

I have to wear a watch. I’m very old school this way. I feel naked without one. Time itself is so precious and fleeting, I need to feel aware of my place and connection to it at all times.

Perhaps it’s a mark of my age, but I don’t understand how one can get used to checking the time on their phone. Even if it’s right there when it’s turned on.

I also have rigid and specific preferences surrounding the type of watch I will wear. It must be analog. It must have real numbers. Not markers, not roman numerals. Numbers. It also must have a day and date. I can’t remember what happened five minutes ago, do you honestly expect me to remember the date?

My current watch is a Timex Perpetual Calendar. Great watch, simple, durable, fits my requirements, and I don’t have to remember which months have 30 days.

Different Drummers

I have two favorite drummers of all time. They are radically different from each other. But what I love about them is the same.

[Stewart Copeland](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stewart_Copeland) is best known as drummer for [The Police](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Police). As a drummer, he is best known for his precision and his ability to get a myriad of versatility using a relatively small drum kit.

[Alex Van Halen](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Van_Halen) is the drummer for [Van Halen](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Van_Halen). As a drummer, he is best known for his big sound and for is ability to, in the space of a four minute song, make use of every piece of his very large drum kit.

You may look at these two and wonder how they could possibly have anything, outside of being drummers, in common. Here’s how: They both take the tools at hand and use them to their fullest extent. Big or small, they each squeeze every drop from their sets. In doing so, they each have carved out a place of their own in the history of modern rock music.

It is a reminder for me to try to do the same. No matter if I am using pen and paper, a smartphone, or a desktop computer. Command the tool at hand, squeeze every drop, carve out a place.

A Most Important Question

Hey. You. Yes, you! Come over here. I’m going to tell you a secret. OK, well, it’s not really a secret. It’s more of a question. A most important question. One that, when asked, can provide a wealth of productive power…

“Where does this belong?”

Want to know how to organize a messy desk? Take everything off, put it in a box, then take each item out, and ask that question. For some items, the answer is obvious. For other items, maybe they don’t have a place – find one. Maybe the answer is not “on the desk” or even “in the room”. Maybe the answer is not even “in the house” or “in my life”. Answering this question can not only make the clean up quick but also ensure quick work when things get out of control again. Because, everything belongs somewhere and now you know where that somewhere is.

The thing is, this question works with more than just clutter.

Want to make your task list more powerful? Ask that question of each task. Sometimes the answer is “as an immediate action”. Sometimes the answer is “on a context specific list” or “broken into smaller chunks”. Sometimes, the answer is “as part of a greater project or goal”. But, sometimes, the answer is “with someone else” or “done at some future date” or “not done at all”.

Want to get your email inbox under control? Never look at another message without asking the question. Does it belong in the inbox now that you have looked at it? No? Perhaps in a separate folder of things you need to take action on or respond to. Perhaps in a folder for reference on a project you are working on. Perhaps read and archived. Perhaps in the trash.
But, where the question becomes truly powerful, is when you apply the question to everything. Because if something does not have a place in your home, in your relationships, in your job, or or in your life, perhaps it should not be there.

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