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Creator: — A simpler personal productivity system. Writing about productivity, self-improvement, business, and life.

This 110 year-old book taught me more in 90 pages than many of the newest big books on the market

Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

I love stumbling upon a hidden gem of a book. One that I’ve never heard of, but someone well-respected speaks highly of it.

I was listening to an interview with the great Brian Tracy, when I heard him mention a book in passing as one of his all-time favorites on…

I tried all the popular productivity systems. This is what finally stuck.

Photo: Netalieh/Getty Images

For the better part of a decade, I’d get frustrated at myself for not
being able to make popular productivity systems to work for me.
GTD, the Bullet Journal Method, Day Designer, The Franklin Covey
planner, the Ivy Lee Method, time-blocking — I tried them all. …

The often-overlooked cognitive bias that hurts both personal and professional relationships creeps in everywhere, and learning how to avoid it is crucial to your development

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Cognitive biases are all the rage these days. Writers all over the internet are abuzz with explanations of these flawed ways of reasoning that trip up our ability to be smart about various things. …

How NOT to be naïve about your passion and find something you love doing.

Photo by Clark Tibbs on Unsplash

My father worked for almost 40 years — for 12–16 hours per day, at a job that he hated. He worked all sorts of crazy hours, was shuffled from location to location, and by his account — hated every minute of it.

Also by his account, he was in this…

Use it in your work life, personal life, and everywhere in between

Photo by Volodymyr Hryshchenko on Unsplash

Early on in my sales training, I had to sit down with engineers and learn about the technical side of what the company sells. The company I work for places a lot of emphasis on its technical aptitude and sells based on industry-leading technical services. …

I was a GTD fanatic for over 10 years, but when I realized it wasn’t giving me what I needed, I had to build my own system

Index cards.
Photo by Kate Trysh on Unsplash

For the first 10 years or so of my working life, I was a huge GTD adherent. At times, I was more than an adherent, I was a fanatic. It seemed like the perfect system to me. I loved ubiquitous capture (and still do, as a matter of fact). Understanding…

A reminder that it’s not about you, and thinking otherwise is the primary reason why things go off the rails

Photo by Grégoire Hervé-Bazin on Unsplash

Goals are interesting. A goal is basically just a strong desire that things be different than they are now. That’s not too interesting. What is interesting is the reason why a particular goal is adopted by someone. …

On Feelings, Facts, and the Minefield of Human Motivation

Photo by Sydney Sims on Unsplash

A few months ago, I was on the phone with the sourcing manager of a prospective customer. I had submitted a quote to her a week ago, and I was following up to see what the next steps were. As I suspected, the next step was: lower your prices.


Finding both the work I love and the person I love took me on a journey that taught me to rethink everything I thought I knew about how love works

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

From the time I was an adolescent, and I first became aware that I was responsible for making a life for myself, I knew that a good life involved love. I had to find work I love, a person I love, a place to live that I love — and…

The thin line of choice we face every day between us and the world

Photo by Katerina Pavlyuchkova on Unsplash

“Life is really simple, but men insist on making it complicated.”

The quote above is from Confucius. I think about it from time to time — whenever my list of things to do seems to have swelled to larger than I can manage.

I also think about it when I…

Mike Sturm

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