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Issue #20 // May 29, 2020
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You can't build a reputation on what you are going to do. — Henry Ford
Why does writing matter in remote work? (8 min read)
Summary: Great writing makes life easier: saving time, reduces meetings, removes biases. You don't need to be a writer, start with slack, email, and text.
Take notes before and after meetings, default to avoid meetings at all costs, but understand when you’re wasting time by not being in a meeting (especially during a one-on-one direct messaging conversation).
  • Writing saves time
  • Writing makes meetings a last resort
  • Writing removes extrovert bias
  • Writing invites other perspectives
  • Spell out acronyms
Here's the 1 Thing You Need to Do to Learn More About Anything (4 min read)
Summary: Simply find a topic you're passionate about in order to keep things interesting.
  • Pay attention to and appreciate the process of what you're doing, rather than constantly measuring how close you are to being done.
  • Remind yourself of the bigger purpose behind whatever it is you're focusing on.
  • Set up lots of tiny milestones and actionable steps you can reward yourself for so your brain gets plenty of pleasurable hits of dopamine.
  • Take spontaneous play breaks to let your brain rest and work in a different way for a bit.
  • Coordinate and communicate well with others so they can help you set and reinforce boundaries.
  • Make it as easy as possible to work. The more challenges or annoyances there are, the more turned off to continuing you'll be.
  • Share your information with others. Being a teacher or giving advice can help you feel confident and excited about what you're doing. At the same time, it reinforces the core concepts you're absorbing and guarantees that you've really understood them.
  • Find some cheerleaders!

7 Rules for Staying Productive Long-Term (10 min read)
Summary: There are only 3 types of systems for productivity, and only one gives you buffer room from external forces.
  1. Your system needs to fit your work
  2. Counterbalance your worst tendencies
  3. You should be able to deal with exceptions, there are always edge cases
  4. A good system shouldn't feel productive
  5. Systems should evolve with your work
  6. Measure against your baseline
  7. Systems don't give work meaning
Sell Yourself, Sell Your Work (3 min read)
Summary: No matter how technically brilliant you are, you've got to sell it.
  • If you've created something. you must have a medium to show it off -- otherwise, who will ever know? Who will ever see it?
  • If you really want people to benefit from your work, figure out how to make it known
Kevin Hart — Life Lessons from a Comedic Powerhouse
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  • “I don’t understand how you do something halfway. I did that through high school, and doing that, I saw the instant consequence."
  • Be positive, no matter what
  • Always drive yourself at 100%
  • Storytelling is how you can really stand out
Smarter Side Gigs
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Roles outside of your organization can help you prosper within it

To Build Strategy, Start with the Future
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Even during a crisis, developing a “future-back” mindset can spur innovation and growth
30 Animals That Look Like Thei're About to Drop the Hottest Albums of the Year

Warren Buffett’s “20 Slot” Rule: How to Simplify Your Life and Maximize Your Results

Life Would Be Better If We Added This Line to Every Email

If work dominated your every moment would life be worth living? (9 min read)

How much can we afford to forget, if we train machines to remember?

Three Paths for a Soloist
Time is speeding up
I can't believe I'm already writing this newsletter. This is scary, it just means that I'm getting used to this whole new COVID-19 and WFH life.

Geographic Arbitrage (AKA: Cost of Living (COL) Arbitrage)
I've been thinking about this one for a while; I have had a lot of colleagues who have even exploited this. The premise is simple:
1) Live in a high COL area and live below your means
2) Live in a low COL area and work in a high COL area (far commute, remote working)
3) Live in a low COL area and work online (selling to high COL areas)
This concept seems as real as ever, given everyone is working from home. Many are moving from big cities to living with parents at home or moving to smaller towns. While this continues, many companies are offering fully remote work, though many still adjust for cost-of-living.
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