Camping and Mountain Biking

For the past few years, I’ve been a part of a weekend guys trip where we camp, ride our mountain bikes and just have fun. This past weekend we did it again and I wanted to share some of the pictures from the weekend.

I know we all get tied up with work and home life but if you have the opportunity, take a weekend off and head to the wilderness with your friends.

Cameras

I just got back home from Laracon in NYC and this year I decided I should take my real camera pictured above. I carried it around taking photos for two days then the battery went dead and I forgot the charger. doh. From that point forward I only used my iPhone.

Now that I’m home I started reviewing all the photos and to be honest I think I like all the picture from my phone better than the ones I took with this dedicated camera. Granted I’m not a “real” photographer but for how easy carrying a phone is versus one this size I just don’t think it’s worth the effort to carry a dedicated camera anymore.

Seasons

Having a daily routine is important as it allows you to coast through the day knowing what comes next. For most people, daily routines include going to work, having dinner, picking up the kids, etc. and once it’s ingrained into your daily life it seems to just happen.

I’ve noticed for me my routine of creating stuff changes based on the seasons. In the winter when it’s cold and it gets dark at 5 PM, I tend to spend more time on the computer writing, drawing, or coding. Then when the time changes and the weather turns warm I want to be outside away from all this.

A good example of this is this blog. Check out the yearly posting schedule. From October – February I posted a ton, then the time changed and I’ve stopped writing.

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At the end of the day, there are only 24 hours and if you can’t keep up a daily habit because you’d rather do something else don’t let that bother you. To quote Olin Miller, “You probably wouldn’t worry about what people think of you if you could know how seldom they do!”. Just push it aside and pick it up again when you are ready to start back.

This is also why I’m a fan of TV shows having seasons, Podcast doing seasons, and even software development going through sprints. It allows you a dedicated time to do something then move on to something else. When the end is in sight you can push to it.

Note to self…

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Note to self… Do not tweet when I’m angry. Nothing good can from it and nine times out of ten it’ll end in more frustration and heartache.

“Thoughts On” journals

Derek Sivers has a blog post from back in January on the benefits of a daily diary and topic journals and this part is something I started trying:

There are certain subjects in your life you think about a lot. People, places, hobbies, health, plans, finances.

For each subject that you might have ongoing thoughts about, start a separate “Thoughts On” journal. Whenever you have some thoughts on this subject, open up that file, write today’s date, then start writing.

I’ve started doing this in my notes app and once I see something that makes me think I open it up and start writing.

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Derek describes his thoughts on like this:

I find it so useful to keep my thoughts on each subject together, because I can see my past thoughts and current thoughts in one place. I can see how my thoughts on this subject have evolved or keep repeating. Sometimes I think I have a new thought on a subject, so I open up the file and write it down, then afterwards I see I had that same thought a year ago and had forgotten about it. If you care about your thoughts, keep them.

For me, each has been more of a rant. I see something on the internet and that enrages me so I write down all my anger. Then I’m done with it and I don’t have to think about it again. Next time you want to argue on the internet write it down and move on with life. I promise you’ll be happier.

Sleep, Glorious Sleep

sleep

For the past month, I’ve started going to bed and waking up at set times, and it’s been amazing. Every night 10 PM is bedtime, lights out, and no talking, then every morning 6:30 AM is wakeup time. I’ve been really consistent and started using a sleep app as a way of tracking it.

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As you can see, I cheated a little over the weekend, but since starting this habit, I’ve felt the best I have in years. I’m no longer tired every day, and in need of a nap. Instead, I feel great and now that my body has acclimated at around 9:50 PM my body tells me it’s bedtime.

We all know sleep is essential but if you’ve been struggling, try going to bed and waking up the same time every day, even on the weekends. I know you’ll lose a little bit of reading or work time, but it’s worth it.

iOS Do Not Disturb While Driving

Since iOS 11 Apple introduced a featured called “do not disturb while driving” where it tries to detect when you are driving and prevent notifications. On the surface, it sounds like a great feature and I enabled in a few weeks ago thinking it would make driving safer.

What I found in practice is it’s been very annoying for me. I’m not a Siri user and when I stop at red lights I typically unluck my phone and change the music. It’s not been sensitive enough to know that I’m now stopped so every time I have to select the option, “I’m not driving” which turns the whole thing off.

I imagine if I used Siri more often, I could just use that to tell it to play something new, but as I’ve written before I have no confidence in Siri, so I don’t use it. I think “do not disturb” while driving is a useful feature and I’m all for it, but right now it isn’t really polished enough for me and feels like more of an annoyance than anything.

It’s one of those features that is so close to being perfect I want to keep it activated, but at the same time, I think I’d prefer to just turn it off and be done with it.

How about you? Is this a feature you use? Am I the one doing it wrong and it’s really a great feature? Feel free to sound off in the comments below.