Moving Along…

I’ve been doing some thinking lately about this blog and what I want to do with it. I first started it with the intention of writing about minimalism and the philosophy and beliefs behind it. Minimalism is a great way to live life, and although I still believe in it I am not so sure that the focus of this blog is going to remain there. There are so many great minimalist blogs and writers out there and most do it better than me.

I never intended this blog to be a money maker for me, and I didn’t have any expectations of wide readership (although I am very grateful for all my readers!). But my writing interests are shifting away from minimalism and productivity. Too often I find myself writing posts that are too trite for my liking. I want and need to explore the breadth of my writing potential, and minimalism is too small a topic for that.

So, hopefully starting soon, I will be reworking this blog to give a different feel. I will still write about minimalism from time to time and I still think its a great philosophy. I’ll keep my old posts and pages. But the focus will be different. Post types and lengths will change. This is a new year! 2013 holds great things in store for me I am sure and I want to be able to write about them all and share them here.

Another thing I hope to do is become more active in looking at and interacting with other writers. Too often I have hit the “follow” button out of reciprocation and not actually taken the time to see what everyone contributes to this hobby/lifestyle called blogging.

Hopefully you, my readers, aren’t disappointed by this change, and I ask that you stick around to see whats in store. I’m certain it will be great!

Advertisements

The People Person

I’ve always been impressed by those who can remember names and connect them with specific faces. For me I can usually only remember one or the other, and generally can’t retain any sort of personal information about someone. I’m just not a “people person.” This can be a problem, and I can foresee complications when I begin my career in the field of marketing. Since marketing is a very people oriented field I need to find some way to increase my recall of names and faces and hopefully some personal information about the many people I meet.

In order to do this I am going to start using Evernote Hello. This app, made by the Evernote Corporation (duh), is designed to take your daily encounters with people and allow you to enter their name, photo (if they aren’t camera shy) and some facts about them into your phone. this way you can keep track of everyone you meet and where you met them and review it as needed. The ratings for the app are not high, however, so I dont know how this little experiment will turn out. But it’s a start right?

Another method I thought of was simply to carry a small notebook with me and record the information I had learned and people I had met as soon as I had free time. A low tech, no pictures version of Evernote’s app.

Does anyone have any other ideas of ways to boost face-to-name recall? If so please leave your comments below!

Review: SuperBetter

Recently I have started playing a new game. No It’s not Diablo 3. It’s not even the type of game I would have seen myself playing a year ago. But with a new lifestyle comes new interests. The game I am speaking of is called SuperBetter.

SuperBetter is an online, social game that allows you to put a challenge in place for yourself (such as eating healthier, losing weight, recovering from an injury, etc). You also can enter in a goal or reason for your challenge. Together they form a mission statement. Mine is: “I want to become SuperBetter at eating healthier so I can become healthier, stronger, and have more energy.”

Now comes the fun part. You can create “quests” which are tasks you can do once or as a recurring thing. These tasks are categorized as Physical, Mental, Emotional, or Social. Every time that you complete a quest you gain points in one or more of those categories. If you cant think of quests on your own SuperBetter provides “PowerPacks”-essentially bundles of quests based around a theme- which you can import into your quest list.

You are also encouraged to create “Bad Guys” to fight. These bad guys can be things like eating too much junk food, taking a smoke break, or anxious feelings. Whenever you defeat a bad guy (or fail to) you can check it off and keep a tally of your battle against the bad things you are trying to avoid. “Power Ups” help you in doing this. A Power Up is an activity or thought that is designed to give you a boost in one the four categories mentioned before. When you are feeling down, or are losing a battle to one of your bad guys you can activate a Power Up and reward yourself for doing something positive.

When you get enough points in the four categories from completing quests, defeating Bad Guys, and using your Power Ups, you gain a new level just like in a role-playing game. But the difference is you are not playing a fictional character, you are leveling up yourself. Every level brings with it a new “Secret Move” or tip on how to improve your life as well as access to research that supports the use of the Secret Move.

Pros: 

-Can be an excellent motivator for exercising or doing things to improve your life. I have done more pushups in the last week than in the last 2 months I think.

-SuperBetter is a social game so it encourages you to enlist allies to help and encourage you.

-Simple, clean site that doesn’t add a bunch of distracting fluff.

Cons:

-There is the potential to become more obsessed with leveling up than with actually progressing in real life. You have to be careful that you aren’t becoming complacent or using SuperBetter as a way to validate a lack of action in your real life.

-No full mobile application (at least for iPhone). It was originally supposed to be released in late April 2012, but according to the app’s page in the App Store the release date is now June 2012.

-To access the SuperBetter forums you have to create a separate account. It is for security purposes, but it is still an annoyance.

Overall I think SuperBetter is a great idea that harnesses the power of positive thinking, small everyday steps for improvement, and social networking to improve peoples lives. Its flexibility allows you to customize it for a variety of purposes, and it is simple enough for even the most technology illiterate to use. I encourage my readers to check it out!