Sitting in my movie room, mourning the demise of my projector I looked over and saw some of my favorite pieces of “art work”. I wanted to share them. If you have never seen any of the work of Olly Moss, you need to check him out. He has become so much better in his craft with each new movie he re-imagines. I’m not able to afford any of his full-size prints, but I found this fantastic set of post-cards that my wife and I framed.
About 4 years ago I started reading for fun. This is something completely out of the ordinary for me. I HATED reading as a kid and rarely ever made it through a full book. It was so boring and I always felt like I was going to fall asleep after just a few paragraphs.
I had to force myself, but I find myself enjoying a good read nowadays. The book that got me started on all this was “When You’re Engulfed in Flames” by David Sedaris. http://youtu.be/QabpFCnVnzk
I’m not sure what’s changed my thoughts on reading or why I don’t fall asleep on the third page anymore, but I’m proud to say that today I finished Kurt Vonnegut’s “Slaughterhouse Five“. It was good and for most people they consider it a short read. But to be honest it wasn’t short for me at all. I’m not the fastest reader out there…at least not when you have to comprehend/remember it. If that’s not the case then I’ve got it down to a book every 30 minutes. Just don’t ask me any questions about it. My favorite line was easily, “if the accident will.” I read it about 15 times and just kept looking at it. Out of context it really makes no sense, but the line before was something like, “maybe we’ll meet again.” I understood what the line was supposed to be, but I didn’t get it. Not one bit. If the accident will what? Why did he say it that way? And then it tagged me. The word “Accident” is treated as an entity. Almost like mother nature. He’s saying if the “will” of the entity “Accident” allows it. It’s just so clever. I don’t how he was able to come up with the things he wrote, but he did a great job at it.
I’ve read three of Vonnegut’s books these past couple year including “Cat’s Cradle” and “Sirens of Titan” which were both awesome. They truly make you look at how the world is and makes you shake your head. Besides the great writing I love how his books are setup. They are broken up not only into paragraphs, but into further smaller sections that make you want to read for a just a few more minutes, ok ok….maybe a just few more minutes and then boom a chapter is done. Any other book and I would be defeated by the length and move on.
I’ve created a goal for myself, using the Everest App, to read a book a month. I also need to set it up to remind me to write this blog daily. Once a month seems slow, but hopefully I’ll get faster. January I read “Start With Why” which had lots of great ideas and thoughts of how to go about communicating, but to be honest you get everything you needed out of his TED Talk (http://youtu.be/u4ZoJKF_VuA). I wasn’t a big fan of his speaking style, but his message is great.
So what’s on the shelf next? I just picked up Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” to see how it goes. This typically wouldn’t be a book for me, but it was a present so why not. As for now, I’m proud to have killed another book. So it goes.
“It’s about managing the people and less about the project.” This is a line that I heard about 2 1/2 hours ago and I can’t get it out of my head. It’s absolutely true and something you can’t learn in school.
This is huge for me. I’m a people person. I’m a people pleaser really. But, where does this end and where does the “cut the crap and get this done” come in? I’ve found that if you’re a hard ass in the beginning then that’s what people expect and work with, but if you’re easy going then flip the switch it’s much harder. Why?
I’ve taken on the role of PM of an incubator over the last 6 months or so and I’ve had my own mental struggles. I’m glad I have these struggles because I want to grow, I want to work hard, and I want to help people have a kick butt experience working with something I’ve a had a huge hand in creating. My own experience keeps telling me to keep doing what I’m doing because people come to me when they have troubles. Even if I’m not able to help them they come over, tell me their issue and I try really really hard to solve it for them. Is that being a PM or is it being a friend?
There are two sayings that , Doug Leeby, CEO of my last company, Beeline, always said and I’ve thought about since the day I’ve heard them: “My customers are everybody that is not myself,” and “assume positive intent.” These are hard, life changing ways of living that are extremely helpful. I use them constantly to keep myself out of trouble, and I annoy the crap out of my wife and friends by repeating it.
I have many things to learn and yet I personally have come so far. None of my previous positions would of ever come close to pushing me this hard and forcing me to learn. I’m glad I have it and I just hope they’re glad to have me.
This is more of a free thinking, letting the words fly out of the head post then a this is how you do some stuff blog post, but again…it’s my time. Stop reading it if you don’t like it.
Well it’s on. I’ve taken on the challenge of one of my coworkers, Amber (http://amberaultman.wordpress.com/2013/03/04/a-challenge-to-my-self-and-the-great-tre-wee/), and decided to write more. I’ve been aching to do this for nearly a year and it’s time to start writing again. I really enjoy it. I may not be good at it, but so what. It’s my time not yours. You hear me? That’s right. Back off and then sit back and enjoy some words.