Flow

Pleasure as an Organizing Principle

This essay was originally posted on the Ribbonfarm blog. The organizing principle of the modern world is pain. Avoiding it, yes. But also trading in it, taking refuge in it, and using it to justify our actions. Pain has so many uses. Why would you ever give up such a versatile tool? We trade in

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Just-In-Time PM #20: Speed as a Capability

In Part 19, I argued that continuously finding new sources of motivation was the most important challenge for knowledge workers, and that the best way to get started was to generate momentum through a series of small wins. Although Progressive Summarization can bootstrap you to a minimum level of motivation, at some point you do

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Just-In-Time PM #19: Explosive Inspiration

In Part 18, I introduced the idea that our states of mind come and go in “motivational waves,” and that we should try to surf them instead of forcing them to conform to our will. Now let’s go deeper into what these motivational states entail, and how we can use them to our advantage. A

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Just-In-Time PM #18: Motivational Waves

In Part 17, I argued that unique states of mind are the most powerful resource available to knowledge workers. But these states are difficult to reproduce on demand, and come and go unpredictably. Our challenge becomes clear: how do we capture the value from a series of valuable, yet fleeting mental states? Let’s take the

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Just-In-Time PM #17: States of Mind

In Part 16, we refined our understanding of Return on Attention by taking into account our biggest constraint as knowledge workers – not just our attention but our deeply focused attention in particular. But human attention is not a simple commodity like oil or gold. It can’t be stored in barrels or vaults or measured

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