Thursday, December 17, 2009

Are You in the Right Job?

Now that I am in my 3rd career, I discovered a litmus test of finding out if you are in the right job. Ask yourself do you like the people you go to lunch with? When I was in the Army, I found it hard to find like minded individuals to chat about philosophy, politics, and books, so I usually ate alone sitting against a tree. When I was an elementary school teacher, I couldn't bear eating lunch in the teachers' lounge and listening to the gossiping and complaining, so I usually ate alone in my classroom. In my current job (now academia), I fill up my lunch plans every week with different coworkers that I genuinely enjoy chatting, collaborative brainstorming, and conversing with. After all I am not a loner luncher, I am finally in the right job around the right people for me.

Dirty Jobs Philosphical Reflection of the Lost Art of Work

Watch Mike Rowe, the host of "Dirty Jobs," tells some compelling (and horrifying) real-life job stories. Listen for his insights and observations about the lost art and  nature of hard work, and how it’s been unjustifiably degraded in society today.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Friday, December 4, 2009

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

GTD Gmail System

My GTD/Gmail system

How to Organize Your Email Folders- GTD Style

Gmail Superstars

My superstar codes:
Yellow Star=Requires Action (No Deadline)
Blue Star= (Ice melt) Requires Action Soon
Red ! = Requires Action Now
i = useful info to file
? = don't know
>>>= forward, @waiting forward, pending, delegated

If you want to find the messages that have a certain kind of star, use one of the following queries:
has:yellow-star (or l:^ss_sy)
has:blue-star (or l:^ss_sb)
has:red-star (or l:^ss_sr)
has:orange-star (or l:^ss_so)
has:green-star (or l:^ss_sg)
has:purple-star (or l:^ss_sp)
has:red-bang (or l:^ss_cr)
has:yellow-bang (or l:^ss_cy)
has:blue-info (or l:^ss_cb)
has:orange-guillemet (or l:^ss_co)
has:green-check (or l:^ss_cg)
has:purple-question (or l:^ss_cp)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Book: Eat That Frog

Brian Tracy’s “Eat That Frog! 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time”

Book Summary:
1. Set the table.
a. Decide exactly what you want.
b. Write it down.
c. Set a deadline on your goal.
d. Make a list of all substeps.
e. Organize the list into a plan.
f. Take action on the plan immediately.
g. resolve to do something every day that moves you towards your goal.

2. Plan every day in advance.
= Proper Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance.
- Master List
- Monthly List
- Weekly List
- Daily List

3. Apply the 80/20 rule to everything.
- Pareto principle 80/20
- Resist the temptation to clear up small things first.
Time management = Life management.

4. Consider the consequences.
- Long term thinking improves short-term decision making.
- Future intent influences and often determines present actions.
- Failures do what is "tension relieving", while winners do what is "goal achieving".

5. Practice the ABCDE method continually.
A = must do tasks (me intend, MIT most important tasks)
B = should do tasks (allow maybe task)
C = nice to do tasks (someday task)
D = delegate tasks (waiting for)
E = eliminate tasks (dump it
-Do all A before B then B before C etc

6. Focus on key result areas.
- Why am I on the payroll?
- Your weakest key result area sets the height at which you can use all your other skills and abilities.

7. Obey the law of forced efficiency.
- "There is never enough time to do everything, but there is always enough time to do the most important thing.

He used the term MIT most important goals or tasks
for each day/each role/area of your life

8. Prepare thoroughly before you begin.
- Clean work area
- All the required tools.

9. Do your homework.
- "Continuous learning is the minimum requirement for success in any field."

10. Leverage your special talents.
- Focus on your best abilities.

11. Identify your key constraints.

12. Take it one barrel at a time.
- Oil drums to cross the desert - one step at a time.

13. Put the pressure on yourself.
- You have to leave for an all-expense paid vacation tomorrow!

14. Maximize your personal powers.
- Sleep enough
- One day a week: absolute vacation.

15. Motivate yourself into action.
- Look for the good.
- Seek the valuable lesson in every setback.
- Look for the solution to every problem.

16. Practice creative procrastination.
- You can get your time and your life under control only to the degree to which you discontinue lower value activities.

17. Do the most difficult task first.
- List everything you have to do.
- Review with ABCDE, 80/20
- Select A1
- Assemble everything needed
- Clear workspace
- Eat that frog.

18. Slice and dice the task.
- Salami slice - fixed units of work. at a time
- Swiss cheese method - fixed units of time at regular intervals.

19. Create large chunks of time.
- Set aside time for specific work.

20. Develop a sense of urgency.
- Get that mental state of "Flow"
- Develop a bias for action.

21. Single handle every task
- Start a high-priority task and persist till its 100% done

Video: Covey's Big Rocks Concept

Friday, October 30, 2009

Swine Flu Prevention

FYI...Only certain people will have access to the swine flu (H1N1) vaccine~ elementary school children and healthcare providers. Those over 65 will be exempt as will most children over 10 years of age.

Dr. Vinay Goyal is an MBBS,DRM,DNB (Intensivist and Thyroid specialist) having clinical experience of over 20 years. He has worked in institutions like Hinduja Hospital , Bombay Hospital , Saifee Hospital , Tata Memorial etc.. Presently, he is heading our Nuclear Medicine Department and Thyroid clinic at Riddhivinayak Cardiac and Critical Centre, Malad (W).

The following message given by him, I feel makes a lot of sense and is important for all to know

The only portals of entry are the nostrils and mouth/throat. In a global epidemic of this nature, it's almost impossible to avoid coming into contact with H1N1 in spite of all precautions. Contact with H1N1 is not so much of a problem as proliferation is.

While you are still healthy and not showing any symptoms of H1N1 infection, in order to prevent proliferation, aggravation of symptoms and development of secondary infections, some very simple steps, not fully highlighted in most official communications, can be practiced (instead of focusing on how to stock N95 or Tamiflu):

1. Frequent hand-washing (well highlighted in all official communications).

2. "Hands-off-the-face" approach. Resist all temptations to touch any part of face (unless you want to eat, bathe or slap).

3. *Gargle twice a day with warm salt water (use Listerine if you don't trust salt). *H1N1 takes 2-3 days after initial infection in the throat/ nasal cavity to proliferate and show characteristic symptoms. Simple gargling prevents proliferation. In a way, gargling with salt water has the same effect on a healthy individual that Tamiflu has on an infected one....Don't underestimate this simple, inexpensive and powerful preventative method.

4. Similar to 3 above, *clean your nostrils at least once every day with warm salt water. *Not everybody may be good at Jala Neti or Sutra Neti (very good Yoga asanas to clean nasal cavities), but *blowing the nose hard once a day and swabbing both nostrils with cotton buds dipped in warm salt water is very effective in bringing down viral population.*

5. *Boost your natural immunity with foods that are rich in Vitamin C (Amla and other citrus fruits). *If you have to supplement with Vitamin C tablets, make sure that it also has Zinc to boost absorption.

6. *Drink as much of warm liquids (tea, coffee, etc) as you can. *Drinking warm liquids has the same effect as gargling, but in the reverse direction. They wash off proliferating viruses from the throat into the stomach where they cannot survive, proliferate or do any harm.

I suggest you pass this on to your entire e-list. You never know20 who might pay attention to it - and STAY ALIVE because of it.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Bill Gates High School Address

Bill Gates recently gave a speech at a High School about 11 things they did not and will not learn in school. He talks about how feel-good, politically correct teachings created a generation of kids with no concept of reality and how this concept set them up for failure in the real world.

Rule 1: Life is not fair . . . get used to it!

Rule 2: The world won't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.

Rule 3: You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn both.

Rule 4: If you think your teacher is tough, wait till you get a boss.

Rule 5: Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your Grandparents had a different word for burger flipping . . . they called it opportunity.

Rule 6: If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes, learn from them.

Rule 7: Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes and listening to you talk about how cool you thought you were. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parent's generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.

Rule 8: Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools they have abolished failing grades and they'll give you as MANY TIMES as you want to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to ANYTHING in real life.

Rule 9: Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you FIND YOURSELF. Do that on your own time.

Rule 10: Television is NOT real life. In real life people actually have to leave the coffee shop and go to jobs.

Rule 11: Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Google's Larry Page Inspirational Commencement Speech at Univ of Michigan

"You know what it’s like to wake up in the middle of the night with a vivid dream? And you know how, if you don’t have a pencil and pad by the bed to write it down, it will be completely gone the next morning?
Well, I had one of those dreams when I was 23. When I suddenly woke up, I was thinking: what if we could download the whole web, and just keep the links and… I grabbed a pen and started writing! Sometimes it is important to wake up and stop dreaming. I spent the middle of that night scribbling out the details and convincing myself it would work. Soon after, I told my advisor, Terry Winograd, it would take a couple of weeks to download the web — he nodded knowingly, fully aware it would take much longer but wise enough to not tell me. The optimism of youth is often underrated! Amazingly, I had no thought of building a search engine. The idea wasn’t even on the radar. But, much later we happened upon a better way of ranking webpages to make a really great search engine, and Google was born. When a really great dream shows up, grab it!"

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Right vs. Left Brain Hemispheres






Play the video to test yourself.