Make time to reflect

Welcome to Learn Create Share No. 23 this week is a little different. Oh and find out the competition winner.

About three hour after I published the last LCS newsletter I could feel the anxiety that had been building up. I had been ambitious and trying to devour more information as well as increase the amount I was creating. My brain was struggling with all the thoughts and ideas and had no where to go.

I sat down with my iPad and apple pencil and made a quick sketchnote.

I realised that my approach of Learn, Create, Share was missing an important part.

Process or reflect.

Without some time to process or reflect, there’s no opportunity to notice the connections between two separate ideas. Your subconscious mind can’t tell the conscious mind what it really ought to hear.

This is exactly the argument people make for being “bored”. By being bored, you basically invite your subconscious mind to tell you EVERYTHING its been dying to let you know.

Unfortunately, It doesn’t always happen instantly or the first time so it needs to be part of the rhythm of life.

So perhaps “learn create share” was a bit too reductive but that’s fine, I still think its a fine name and those aspects are important too.

  • If you only have time for create and process, then you won’t grow into new areas and make surprising discoveries.

  • If you only learn and process then you don’t see the fruits of those labours (and I would argue you don’t learn everything. “In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In Practice there is.” - Benjamin Brewster)

  • And if you never share what you make, others miss out.

Add morning processing time

So this week I didn’t try to learn new things but instead gave myself time to process.

I needed to give my brain an opportunity to deal with all that it had been thinking about.

Of course, even though I stopped listening to podcasts & audiobooks as well as pausing reading kindle books, and my email newsletter subscriptions, I still learned somethings had some input. But that was not me going out to find it.

A way to build in processing time: 6 week sprints

Last year I was struggling with focus and overthinking, so I set up a system to help me. 6 week sprints.

The idea was to set an outline for 6 weeks of activities and then basically stick to it. So this would be 6 week’s of blog posts as well as the books to read etc. You could perhaps change a blog post title or idea later, but the point was that you’d published a blog post on a certain day.

For week seven, you don’t create anything like that, but instead you plan your next sprint with your next goal in mind.

The idea is to give a minimum commitment and a clear outline so if you are the kind of person who jumps from one great idea to the next, you have to wait at least 6 weeks to jump. It also helps with overthinking and questioning as you know you have a goal in mind and everything should work for that goal.

The other aspect I employed was that I could only focus on executing during the week and any big strategic ideas were left for week 7 (or the weekend) to consider. That prevented getting caught up thinking about what was the best way to approach something.

Over time I became less strict about my 6 week sprints but I still made 6 week plans.

Now I think I’ll be a bit more strict and create a new one. Perhaps you’d like to try it yourself.

Creative challenge: Reflect and Share

I was trying to apply the main idea from above in this week’s creative challenge. Take some time to think back on what you learned.

  1. Think of one interesting thing

  2. Think how it applies to you or someone else.

  3. Then share it with someone else you know.

    You can choose how you want to share it and I’d

Range competition winner!

Congratulations Scott Symes who won the Range Book competition in the last email. A copy is on its way we speak!

Thank you

Thank you for continuing to read. My last Substack post had the most views of any to date (I try not to pay too much attention...but I can’t help it).

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