Doing Something Great

Keith over at To-Done wrote an interesting post about
doing something great.

I want to do Something Great. I’m crazy about helping people be all
they can be. I want to help people regain control over their to-do
lists, finances, and the rest of their lives. I want to help people
share their passion and knowledge through better teaching and
presentation skills.

Many of my friends also have great passions. Ranulf Goss wants to
launch the Philippine PC game development industry. He founded Slycesoft and regularly gives inspirational talks at universities to encourage students to get into game development. Maoi Arroyo wants to jumpstart the Philippine biotech industry. She founded Hybridigm Consulting and also teaches people about entrepreneurship. Gabriel Narciso wants to build the nation. He does free-lance productivity coaching and organizational development for non-profits.

Here are some of the I’ve learned from them and from many other people I admire:

  • Set audacious goals. In the book Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies, James Collins and Jerry Porras talk about Big, Hairy, Audacious Goals. Visionary companies are passionate about goals that may seem too daring or even impossible, but they achieve them because they’re
  • Write down your goals and share them with as many people as you
    can.
    Constantly write down and review your goals. Talk about
    your goals with other people. As you share your goals, you’ll not
    only learn more about yourself but also gain the insights of others.
  • Surround yourself with people doing great things. Their
    passion will inspire you to work on your own goals, and you’ll be
    surprised at how helpful your network can be.
    Steve Pavlina
    said that one of the best things you can do is look for a
    mentor. You’ll learn a lot from mentors not only in your field but also elsewhere!
  • Don’t give up. You’ll hear a lot of nos and you’ll run into a
    lot of dead ends. Don’t give up! Take criticism into consideration,
    but keep on going. You can do it!

そのコンピュータは最新式だ。 The computer is up to date.

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Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

> Congratulations!
> Is there a good time for us to talk?
>> Hi Mark,
>> For your information. We will issue an admission offer to Sandra.
>> Please let us know if she is joining us in May, or in September.
>>> Hi Brenda, This is just to advise you that the A&P Committee has
>>> approved Sandra Chua's admission to the M.A.Sc. program.

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

E-Mail from Mark Chignell

イヌとは対照的に、ネコはごく最近になって飼いならされたものである。 In contrast to the dog, the cat has become domesticated only in recent times.

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On organization

joroxx said:

oh man, how do you keep a life so organized? ya know i
love emacs and lisp but i’m bogging down on planner. :-(

i guess i like spontainity and surprises! :-)

Some people look at my website and think I’m organized. I have no idea
what gives them that impression. Maybe it’s the color-coded task list.
Yes, yes, that must be it.

Regular readers will notice, however, that I procrastinate as much as
anyone else. Just check my website tomorrow and see which tasks still
aren’t done. ;) In fact, if you look at the linked pages, you’ll find
lots of tasks I haven’t even scheduled.

I guess I procrastinate in an organized manner. ;) Planner lets me do
that. It doesn’t guilt-trip me into productivity or nag me to do
things. Rather, it helps me keep track of the things I’d like to
eventually get around to doing, and it occasionally reminds me that I
should do some of those things soon.

Planner makes working fun. I love seeing crossed-off tasks on my
Planner. When I break things down into tiny little pieces and cross
them off my list, it feels good. On the other hand, if I don’t manage
to cross off anything on my list, that means I had either made
progress on at least one task or had fun doing something unexpected. <grin>

I love surprises, too. Today I had lunch with Clair and Madj at
Greenbelt. Totally unplanned—actually, I was just planning to sleep
in—but totally, totally fun. Then my mom and I went to a wedding in
Alabang, and that was surprisingly wonderful and sweet… =)

E-Mail from Richi’s server

秘密はもうすっかり知れ渡っているよ。 The cat is well out of the bag.

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About procrastination

From http://www.dictionary.com :

pro-cras-ti-nate

(v. intr.) To put off doing something, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness.

(v. tr.) To postpone or delay needlessly.

Procrastination might not be the best word to advertise so
prominently on the wikiblog of personal information management
software maintainer, what with all its negative connotations. After
all, don’t we want software to help us be more productive, not less?

So what’s with planned procrastination, anyway? I renamed my
blog from the informative-but-boring “sacha chua – wiki” to the
huh?-and-slightly-less-boring “planned procrastination” on a whim. I
wanted to mention some kind of planning, but I didn’t want to project
myself as some kind of productivity guru. At least, not yet.

Besides, what’s wrong with the word “procrastination”? I joke about
PlannerMode
being the best procrastination tool I’ve ever used. When I think about
it, though, that’s why I like it so much. Planner doesn’t force
a particular way of thinking on me. It doesn’t bury me under a list of
urgent TODOs that must! be! done! today! Planner simply lets me get
things out of my head so that I can rest assured knowing that things I
plan to do someday won’t slip through the cracks of my memory.

Sure, a lot of self-help books tell you to stop procrastinating and
do things now.
I might be one of the rare people not
bothered by the idea that I procrastinate. I keep ideas simmering on
the backburner, ready for lazy afternoons or moments of inspiration in
the bath. My procrastination is a gleeful exercise of power over my
life, making space for other unplanned things. I don’t mind putting
things off until tomorrow if there are unexpectedly wonderful things
going on today. =)

Note that this doesn’t mean I’ll put off doing things until the
absolute last minute. In fact, I enjoy doing things with time limits
as soon as I can, and I often submitted programming assignments soon
after they were given. I once majorly freaked out when one of my group
projects was delayed not because of my part (which I had finished
weeks before) but because the other group members hadn’t even started
on their documentation until the day before (or something like
that)…

For me, procrastination is simply the ability to choose what I’d like
to work on today, knowing that I can work on other things tomorrow or
the next day or the day after that. It’s not perfect, but it does give
me a happy feeling about how much I accomplish each day and excitement
about what I’m going to do tomorrow.

I’m looking for a stronger title. “productively procrastinating”?
“structured procrastination”? Something that doesn’t mention
procrastinating but still manages to express this idea? =) Any
suggestions?

この猫はネズミを追いかけない。 This cat doesn’t chase rats.

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Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!

Hi Sacha,

I just talked to the grad office. They were waiting for me to give my
approval, oops. :) An offer letter should be going out to you shortly.

Mark

Mark Chignell wants me there by mid-May!

We will have a watermelon party later. Yay yay yay yay yay!

E-Mail from Mark Chignell

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If imitation is the highest form of flattery, I must be very boring

sassylawyer has been plagiarized. That got me to
thinking about plagiarism, and you know? I don’t think I’ve ever been
badly plagiarized. Probably not a single line maliciously lifted from my Ph104 or
JapanTraining notes.
No one reposts me to get +5 Insightful or to increase post count on
some bulletin board. I saw a number of Google queries poking around my
notebook directory back when I still had files from college,
but those were probably people who would’ve copied netlists or
programs from elsewhere on the Net, anyway.

Conclusion: I must be really boring. ;)

I suppose it also helps that the only things I post on my blog are
random code snippets, bad short stories, business ideas,
and my TODO list, all of which can be freely reposted anywhere you want.
(In fact, please steal my TODO list!)

The only people who read my blog are geeks, my family and my friends.
They’re all smarter than I am and have no problems coming up with
insightful posts on their own.

I’m not concerned about plagiarism. I trust that if my thoughts are
being posted to a forum by someone who’s too lazy to think up cool
stuff, the mere fact that the poster would think other people would
find such things interesting means that some of the readers might’ve
stumbled across my blog before. Then they laugh at the poster,
completely destroying the poster’s reputation. Mwahaha.

Even if I never get attributed, it’s nice that the ideas are out
there. My ideas are more important than my byline. I don’t care who
eventually makes stuff happen as long as the stuff happens. I learn by
writing, and I lose nothing if people copy me. If people go to the
trouble of stripping out my identity, then they’ll just have to deal
with questions and bugs themselves.

I don’t care if people stumbling upon my work never bother to find out
who I am. If they find something in my braindump useful, well and
good. If they copy-and-paste what I’ve written into something they
need to submit for class or work, they’ve lost the opportunity to
exercise their mind.

If someone ever accuses me of plagiarizing my own work, I’ll simply
laugh and point to the other stuff I’ve written or to the things I’ve
done. People know I’m real.

So there. I trust you, reader. I’ll never use Javascript hacks to make
it difficult for you to save data from my website.
I’ll never make it difficult for you to syndicate my blog
(RSS feed) or copy it
whole-sale. Heck, if you want
an archive of my planner, either wget -r
http://sacha.free.net.ph/notebook/plans/ or e-mail me for an archive.

Go ahead and steal my thoughts. Add your insights. Make them better.

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