The 2K11 24/7 XXXIX: Less Talk, More Action!!!

You can talk all you want about the things you intend to do, but it’s meaningless unless you actually do anything about it! I definitely want to get the schedule for this blog back on track — the last while has seen me getting posts in with minutes to spare before midnight, and that’s not a practice I want to see becoming a regularity for my blog. The more I can get done ahead of time, the more time I can spend working on getting the blog more exposure, giving it a crisper look and making sure that it’s nothing short of a genuine, 100% effort at good blogging! So here I am, getting my ideas on paper (so to speak) so I can get back to getting quality posts about quality topics without worrying about missing anything due to last-minute rushes. I’ve been crafting this one in particular since what I’m told are the “wee hours” of the morning (though I do this so often that it just seems to be “normal hours of operation”, in my opinion) working on a few entries to get a handle on the flow of the blog. I’m thinking that it’ll be easiest if I ferry my ideas between a text file on my laptop and an ongoing email on my BlackBerry. I can make this work πŸ™‚

So what’s keeping our protagonist up on an early Tuesday morning?

The 2K11 24/7 XXXVIII: VOICE POST – The Road Ahead

In today's post we talk a little about what I still need to do to improve the blog and some of the things I hope to see happen in the rest of 2011 πŸ™‚

Also, if you're a reader from the Mississauga / Milton / Brampton / or even Oakville area, DO I EVER HAVE A CONTEST FOR YOU!!!
Keep it lively out there, mi amigos!
–case p.

The 2K11 24/7 XXXVII: How Does Casey do the MARVELOUS Things He Does?!

Friends, Romans, really loyal readers, how's it going??
I wanted to write on this a few days ago, but other things took precedence. Now, on my way to an ultimate frisbee game and immediately following some time spent on homework for the pre-marital classes, I'm getting into my groove. (Please note that I didn't FINISH before the ultimate game, but I'm glad I didn't since I had a lot more to write!) NJ asked me a little while ago a few questions about how I blog – the method to the madness, if you will. I've put them at the bottom of this post, because I'll get to them in just a moment. With a month of this year's blog under my belt so far, I've learned a bit more about myself:

  • The level of commitment I'm willing to put toward a cause if it means something to me
  • The importance of sticking to a theme
  • How to improve the image we convey of ourselves and how important this is
Writing the 2K11 24/7 has been a great experience so far and I'd like to tell you some more about how it's been so far and how I'mΒ improving from writing all of these posts!

And now (because I know you've all been on the edge of your seats waiting), the questions!

The 2K11 24/7 XXXVI: What’s in YOUR toolbox??

Quick wins. Long-term strategy. Re-prioritization. These are words that you often hear in planning meetings where your boss is trying to figure out the 5 w’s and the h (who, what, where, why, when, how) of the next initiative coming out — but that’s not what I’m referring to right now. I’m talking about your life. In order to get the most out of our lives, how should we live? Do we live in a reactive state, always taking care of what comes across our plate day-to-day? Do we meticulously plan, trying to take every potential outcome into consideration before making the decisions in our lives? Is there a right way? A wrong way? Should we be living more like someone else in particular?

If all of these questions are flying through your head right now, I’m here to tell you one thing — you’re overthinking it.
Everyone’s different. This is a fact that we’re all told time and time again. You and I are vastly different from one another. So why do we expect that one method of living life will work best for us above another one? That a self-help book will guide us down the correct path to where we need to be? Or that if someone figures out a way to become a multi-millionaire, and we read a book on the method they used to do so, that we instantly have the tools and skills we’ll need in order to do the same? Are you kidding me? That’s a load of crock. It’s like I told you before — you’re going to have to put in the work in order to get wherever it is you want to be. But if that’s the case, then what’s the point of reading books, going to seminars — if someone’s advertising something that will improve your life, and we’re so individual that no one method will work exactly the same for everyone, then why should we even bother?
Because you’re building your toolbox.

The 2K11 24/7 XXXV: Improving Against Daunting Odds

Wow. What a week. I hope everyone's been doing okay β€” this was probably one of the ones for the record books for me, but that's how it goes sometimes. I felt like writing about this today; I have a lot of material that I'd love to cover in the blog, but this week has tossed one thing after another in my direction. In the course of one week, I've seen:

  • My boss take another job, which changes the mix of things at work entirely (this is after my other boss took another job a month before, doubling my workload!)
  • My Mac totally acting up, which means that I'll need to find the time to take it in to the shop and be computer-less for a few days
  • The repurposing of magazines work out really well, but now I need to sit down and sort all of the clippings into a digital archive for future use
  • Missing out on a few days of free training from Element K due to being so involved with other facets of life β€” hope to post about that later this month
Amongst other things which have put what I thought was a regular schedule all out of whack.Β 
But do I give up? Come on, guys β€” I'm way too stubborn for that πŸ™‚ No, what I'm going to do is review the half-finished stuff I have, plan a little, and by the time this weekend is through, possibly have a better idea of what you might be able to expect for the rest of February πŸ™‚ It astounds me (much as it does every year) that 1/12th of the year already slipped by, but I feel for the first time in ages that I'm really making use of each passing day πŸ™‚
Before I wrap up today's post, I'd like to let you know that I really appreciate the time you guys take to answer polls. They really help me to figure out what steps to take next and what you're interested in reading about. That, comments and any other interactions are useful for me to make sure this blog isn't simply something that only I'd like to read!
So please comment with anything you'd like to read, directions you'd like to take with me β€” you know, anything and everything in that category πŸ™‚ I hope you have your reading glasses on for this weekend, because I'm coming.
Goodnight, fellow mortals!
–case p.

The 2K11 24/7 XXXIV: Voice Post – Friends. How Many of Us Have Them?

Hey all, and welcome to today’s post πŸ™‚ Today I’ve done some reflection on my friendships and what it means to be a friend. There’s much to do in order to have meaningful, lasting friendships, and I chose to touch on a bit of it in today’s voice post. Agree? Disagree? I’d love to hear all about it β€” the comment box is below to use to your liking πŸ™‚

Have an awesome night!
–case p.

The 2K11 24/7 XXXIII: The Suitcase Chronicles, Part Two

I might need to think about getting a car. This is a thought I’ve never really considered before, but it might be an idea. Toronto’s an overcrowded city, without adequate roads, public transportation or traffic fluidity to support the booming population. On a day like today, where I packed a suitcase of random things I’d had lying around my office, logic would say that taking a taxi would have been easier and faster than hiking it 20 minutes to the subway and riding that home, but with the pathetic squall that was Snowmageddon 2011, it still backed up the roads enough to make that a bad idea. Hauling these loads back and forth isn’t fun, but it’s what I’ve always known. Maybe that needs to change. Less loads or get me some wheels, something’s gotta give. I mean, in all honesty, trekking with the suitcase wasn’t all that bad – I probably got some much-needed exercise out of the entire ordeal β€” but I guess I could’ve made it all much easier on myself. Anyway, sorry for yesterday’s post – I felt it was pretty incomplete, but you should’ve seen me β€” on my bed, using the last bits of my energy to try and get a post out β€” no matter what! Who was going to win β€” my sheer stubbornness or Mr. Sandman? It was tooth and nail, my eyelids drooping as my fingers go clack-a-lack on the keyboard. In the end, you got… well, a blog post about nothing, in my honest opinion.I have stuff to say about to-do lists that’s way more interesting, but it’ll take time to get a decent post together with examples and good dos and don’ts.

But let’s have some real talk β€” what did I do to improve my life today? I try to ask myself this daily, to make sure that I keep growing.

Today? Today I did more teaching than learning, but I guess I learned that I can be a decent teacher? Work right now is all about juggling my tasks with teaching newer staff how to do the procurement mambo plus trying to establish some new tools. I guess I also learned that I haven’t reached my breaking point yet, either. Don’t know if that’s a good thing πŸ™‚

I guess Blizzy Smalls kept me from really pulling anything off today. What the heck. I need to do something insane tomorrow or something. Any suggestions?
Anyway. NatandMarie finally got their live show up and running, so I guess I’ll go watch while I work on wedding invitations. Or pre-marital class homework. Or wedding invitations. Or something.
Hope you’re all having a more interesting night!
I’m out!
–case p.

The 2K11 24/7 XXXII: What To Do With Too Many To-Do Lists

Happy February, boys and girls! Here in Toronto we’re under the threat of a massive snowstorm engulfing us overnight (yes, my northern friends – here, we consider 20-30 cm massive; let us not forget the debacle of 1999 where we called the Armed Forces to help us shovel), so we’ll see what the next few days are like. Obviously I’ll keep posting – I don’t think that a snowstorm will stop the juggernaut that is the Internet – but should make for interesting times!

In the comments from my post some days back, NJ and I were alluding to the fact that we’re the types to constantly keep busy. CONSTANTLY. Relaxation for me seems to be more like a punishment than any good. I get stir crazy, I start thinking about the next thing I should be working on – yeah, it just doesn’t work out for me.

To keep all of this sorted out, I use a ton of charts, to-do lists and mind maps. I’ll open a random text file and just dump my thoughts into it until I’ve come up with another pile of things that I’d love to accomplish whenever I get the chance to.

But what happens when you’ve got too many to-do lists?

The 2K11 24/7 XXXI: Why Having So Much Crap is Such a Pain

Blergh. This post would’ve totally come out earlier, but got wrapped up in all sorts of stuff β€” dodgeball, taking on an additional role at work this week due to my colleague being on vacation β€” it’s just been busy. But I’m committed to getting you that daily content, so here I am πŸ™‚ !
So I made some progress in the Quest for Less yesterday – not as much as I’d hoped, but I soon found that the goals I’d set had been slightly naΓ―ve. My room is filled with memories, minutia and memorabilia from moments past. (Feel free to quote that.) Although our stuff is transient and in many cases will not outlast us, we can’t immediately discount the emotional bonds we’re form with it. Instead of dumping things outright, we categorize them – putting them in piles depending on their function, or perhaps the ever-ambiguous “maybe” pile :)Some things that helped to get me sorted included these approaches:

The 2K11 24/7 XXX: The Quest for Less – INTRODUCTION

So after church today I came back to Miserysauga for the night to hang with fam and just rest. But I didn’t come alone. As part of the Quest for Less, I’ve brought a whole bag full of stuff that I’ve had lying around in one form or another for way too long. Half-done scene sketches, reference material, old magazines – lots of stuff that’s either crap or that could be repurposed to something greater. I always tell Sarah that one of my main daily goals is to never come home with as much as I have when I head out the door in the morning. This applies to:

  • The amount of stuff in my bags
  • The amount of weight I’m carrying on my shoulders from the to-do list that needs tackling/how many things I have on my mind for that day
  • Sometimes, even the number of bags I’m carrying

I love the idea of downsizing life (except when it comes to job – that’s never cool). I’m sure that at one point in my life, amassing all the stuff that I have made sense. I’m sure that much of it had sentimental value at one point or another. But now is not then. The things that have a LOT of sentimental value to me – my candygrams received through five years of private school – sit in a box I’ve duct taped in triplicate. If I ever feel like I’ve reached the lowest of lows in life, that box is meant to help remind me of good times and who I can be if I try πŸ™‚