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Stuff #84 - taste the ocean

Time, Energy and Attention are the holy trinity of productivity. Gratitude could be your new superpower, or you could enhance your history knowledge. It's all in Stuff #84.

Matt Rutherford
Matt Rutherford
3 min read
Stuff #84 - taste the ocean
Photo by George Pagan III / Unsplash
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Hi from Austin, I'm Matt...

Just like the olden days of yore, I'm on a trip for work, so this week's Stuff comes to you from Austin, Texas. It's great to have a new view on the world for a few days, and I'm enjoying writing this during the flight over.

As always, if you have any thoughts or feedback - feel free to hit reply, I'd love to hear from you.

Thank you for being a part of Stuff. If you received this email from an excellent friend, and would like to subscribe, please go here. If you'd like an archive of Stuff from the beginning of 2022 - it's here.

Onward with the Stuff that MattRs this week...
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If you ever need an Icebreaker for a meeting, check out The Questions: it's my free pile of random questions to kick start your conversations.
  1. Monday Motivation:   Let this week by the week that we all take a good look at our framework for productivity.  The amazing Ness Labs explores the idea of time, energy and attention with three practical principles to help power you to new levels.  Bonus content - this indispensable document for a modern manager, I'm working on this right now!
  2. Your new superpower:  I journal most days, 500 words before I start my day to clear my mind and capture my thoughts.  I finish every journal with gratitude, and every week I tell my team what I am grateful for at work. Now research explains how gratitude changes your brain.  I can vouch for this.  If anyone is up for a 30-day x 500 words challenge - hit reply and let me know.
  3. Essential Reading: 40 short skills for a successful modern life. Stuff readers seem to love a list like this - #24, #33 and #38 really resonated with me.
  4. Take care of yourself: This assessment will help you understand your current relationship to self-care. If you need help, follow these steps to learn when and HOW to seek support.  
  5. TWIL:  Morgan Freeman (the obvious narrator of the film of my life), wears two gold hoop earrings that are worth just enough "for someone to buy a coffin if I die in a strange place".
  6. Sit up straight, shoulders back: This ingenious app will use your computers webcam to see if you are slouching, and remind you to stand up, stretch and take a walk break.
  7. I know this track, who is it? Tunefind is a brilliant and useful resource that publishes all the music in your favourite TV shows.  Now you can find out who made those classical covers of Ariana Grande that you heard in Bridgerton.
  8. Boost your historical knowledge: In Stuff passim, I have mentioned the brilliant wikitrivia history quiz.  Now someone has taken all the data points and built this extraordinary visualisation. #geniuswork
  9. Low-fidelity:  Lo-fi streams will play you some chill music, ideal for work, study or relaxation.  No vocals, just laid-back beats.
  10. Finally: Another daily puzzle quiz, but this one is a bit more challenging.  Fast Flood is a logic puzzle, where the simple aim is to turn all the squares, the same colour.  You get three attempts a day, and it's nowhere near as east as it looks. Please don't blame me if you lose an hour thinking about this!

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Do you love independent writing? I recommend The Sample. Every day, they will send you a novel newsletter you might like, no obligation.
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My aural stuff for you this week is the new collection from Kathryn Joseph - for you who are the wronged. Kathryn is a Scottish singer-songwriter, who has stripped back their work and built this eerie and atmospheric album. It's a beautiful thing, and well worth a listen this week. Kathryn is live in Dublin this week, and I'm a bit sad that I won't get the chance to see her live.

Listen to Kathryn Joseph - for you who are the wronged on Spotify here.

Stuff that someone said:

"Don't spend your entire life building a ship without ever tasting the salt of the ocean."   Alexander Den Heijer

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