Month: May 2021

What If Today Was the Day You Decided to Commit to One Thing?

All of the progress we crave starts with one step. Goals aren’t just a part of the endgame. They are the endgame. But your actions are what get you there. A reality so close to our faces is often ignored for the sake of seeming productive.

You see, the word progress is misused nowadays. It currently means to tack on more than we can handle in pursuit of what we think will make us happy. But do we know for sure? Of course not. The reason is tied closely with how distracted we are.

There is no way to walk in confidence if your mind is worrying about another commitment down yonder, behind you, or off to the side. (I’m only referring to tasks we voluntarily assign ourselves to — not family obligations or necessary responsibilities associated with keeping ourselves and relationships healthy.)

The issue here is not effort. Most of us have that. Instead, breakdowns come from splitting our energy into hundreds of pieces, then leaving it there to die.

“What we choose to focus on and what we choose to ignore — plays in defining the quality of our life.”Cal Newport

We are built to excel. But that doesn’t mean doing so in multiple ways, at the same time. You build excellence with intention, and intention is unidirectional.

In other words, you create sustainable growth in playing the guitar if you prioritize practicing the guitar. By giving yourself the opportunity to focus on one goal at a time, you gain traction and confidence.

We overconsume our minds with goals so much that we replace action with daydreaming.

Don’t get me wrong — it’s good to daydream. You give your mind a chance to roam free of toxic hustle culture syndrome and relish the idea of accomplishing the goals you set.

But at the end of the day, the only way you get from point A to point B is by doing the work. The question I’ve been asking myself lately, though, is…What work?

I’ve gained immense clarity in my life by doing the following:

Step 1 — Make a list of what is worth your focus. This could be the ultimate goal or micro-goals that lead to achieving it (or both). The point is to clarify where your attention belongs.

Step 2 — Make a list of what is not worth your focus. One of the best ways to figure out what matters is by getting clear on what doesn’t. In this way, you create a filter through which to live.

Step 3 — Set a time to come back to refine the lists. As you grow, your desires grow with you. How willing you are to step back and analyze the person you’re becoming plays a huge role in that.

I’m sure you’ve seen writers, entrepreneurs, and business minds who preach multitasking as if their lives depend on it. They spread the idea that if you really want to go places, you have to do it all.

I believe that idea is a dud. Why? Because you can only become an expert at one thing at a time.

I’ve tried to learn code and music simultaneously. I overworked my brain. My body begged for a break. And the only thing I actually accomplished was burnout.

That’s not moving forward; it’s moving backward.

Honest creators will confess that you need to become an expert at the most meaningful vein in your life.

That’s not to say that research should replace your creativity. Freedom of the mind is crucial to longevity in anything you pursue in life. If you put blockades in front of that, you won’t last long.

I liken the creative journey to a hike. It seems fun at first — and, in fact, it is. But then the struggle starts. The pain of repetition causes everything in your body to want to give up and call it a day. And yet, there’s nothing more rewarding than reaching the destination you worked so hard for.

Don’t miss the point. That hike required focus, consistency, and determination on one thing — wherever you set out to be. You can’t complete the trek and scuba dive.

You also don’t have time to worry about the experiences of others. At the same time, someone else’s experience may teach what you lacked the courage to learn. We are traversing the courses of our existence together and in our own way.

We are faced with decisions that affect the course of our journey each day. The questions and answers are ours to contribute to a culture absorbed in distraction.

For me, it’s been a lesson worth learning time and time again. I get caught up in how much I can do today instead of what stands as the most important thing.

A bunch of complete, minute tasks doesn’t give us the kind of traction we seek. That’s only found in intentional commitment to a specific space.

It’s time you decided to commit to one thing. Because one thing with your complete attention becomes life-changing. And that habit will translate into other areas of your existence.

Kevin Horton is a 24-year-old photographer, student, modest bookworm, and wanna-be web developer with a new-found love for writing. He writes helpful words about creativity, productivity, and the enjoyably simple life.

Image courtesy of Alexandr Podvalny.

WFH: The Essentials


Following a year of increased numbers of people working from home (WFH), due to the COVID-19 pandemic, more employers are turning to long-term remote working options for their employees.

During 2020 in the UK, 35.9 percent of the employed population did some work at home, according to a homeworking hours study from the Office for National Statistics. This number represents a 9.4 percent increase from the previous year.

Future WFH numbers are set to rise worldwide. During October 2020, Reuters revealed details from an Enterprise Technology Research (ETR) survey showing that global working from home numbers are expected to double in 2021.

With the potential of a future working landscape involving an element of home-based days or fully remote roles, setting up a space for effective work is incredibly important.

In this guide, we’re going to cover the working from home essentials you’ll need to ensure you’re staying productive and on top of your game.

Planning for Your Space

Before you dive in and start buying great products for your desk you’ll need to plan where you’ll be working from. This will depend on the space you have and whether you have a spare room or a corner of an existing living space.

However, there are a few practicalities you’ll need to account for. Will you need somewhere quiet for calls, for instance?

Once you’ve figured out where you’ll be based, consider the following:

  • Does the space you’ll be in get particularly cold, or warm? Add a heater or desk fan to your list.
  • Will the sun shine on your screen at a particular time of day? Position your desk according to factors such as this.
  • Make a list of everything you already own, followed by the things you’ll need.

The Essentials

Planning your space and creating a list of office essentials can help you ensure nothing is overlooked.

Here are our top five areas to consider for your WFH essentials.

1. Desk and Chair

While working in an office, you’re sure to have an appropriate desk setup with a comfortable chair – this should be no different when you’re working from home.

Avoid any repetitive strain injuries, aches and pains by ensuring you invest in an excellent desk and chair.

2. Computer Equipment

The tech and equipment you have access to will probably depend on your working status. If you’re employed, your company will likely provide you with the following:

  • Laptop or computer.
  • Keyboard and a mouse.
  • Second, or even third screen if your role dictates that’s what you require.

However, if you’re self-employed, these are the types of items you’ll need to purchase. As with a desk and chair, focus first on ergonomics to help avoid RSI.

3. Tech

There are a number of other pieces of technology equipment and extras that will assist your productivity – these include:

  • Strong WiFi connection
  • Quality headphones – for noisy neighbours and to ensure you can hear/be heard on important calls.
  • Printer, plus ink or printer toner.
  • Smart speaker to ask questions or play music without having to lose focus.

4. Desk Accessories

There are several accessories that could create the difference between average and great productivity for your working life.

For instance, a computer stand can help you work from a standing position and a quality desk lamp means that if inspiration strikes after dark, you can carry on working comfortably.

Consider the following to help you flourish:

  • Risers for a laptop.
  • Computer stand.
  • Desk lamp.
  • Mouse pad.
  • Quality notepad and pen.

5. Extras for Comfort

Comfort could be key to ensuring you have a great experience of working from home, so here are some ideas for additions to your space to keep the wheels in motion:

  • Comfortable chair/area.
  • Office furniture/filing cabinets.
  • Quality water bottle.
  • Light therapy lamp.
  • Plants.

Inspired to update your home office? It’s time to get organized and create a space for working from home productivity and success.

Focus Your Attention

Focus Your Attention
• Is your attention span too short?

• Do you wish to improve your concentration?

• A focused mind enables you to carry out everything faster, more efficiently, and with fewer mistakes.

• Learn how to focus your mind and attention!

I Want More Info

How to Find Success Late in Life

When I was ten I wanted to be an astronaut, a writer, a spy, a superhero, and an advice columnist.

I wrote a play. I did spy on people. But I couldn’t figure out how to be a superhero. I read collected columns of “Dear Abby” (an advice columnist) every day.

The only advice I remember her giving was to a woman who was married to a guy who would go to clubs for “sexual favors”. The woman didn’t know what to do. Abby told her!

Then when I was in sixth grade I forgot all about the things in fifth grade. I wanted to be President! Then in seventh grade I joined a cult. And so on.

Now, people as young as 17 are sending me emails that say, “I’m 17 and I feel like I have done nothing in life! What should I do?”

There’s a simple answer: do whatever you want. Then it all adds up.

If you try to get 1% better each day at your health, at your relationships and the way you treat people, at your creativity, and at turning despair into gratitude, then that 1% compounds into an amazing person.

Do that 1%. Take one action. Even if the actions is for one minute. The 1/1/1 strategy.

I know this. Because I’m still compounding. What is 1%? Whatever you want it to be. The math of life is multi-dimensional.

What happens to amazing people? Everything happens to them. And you never worry about what you accomplish. Because there is no ONE thing. There is EVERY thing. And every day.

Here are some people who accomplished things late in life. I admire all of them. I’m 50, and one day I’m going to figure out what I want to do with my life.

James Altucher is the author of the bestselling book Choose Yourself, editor at The Altucher Report and host of the popular podcast, The James Altucher Show, which takes you beyond business and entrepreneurship by exploring what it means to be human and achieve well-being in a world that is increasingly complicated. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.

Image courtesy of Marcus Aurelius.