I have a question for you all to start this weeks newsletter. At what point do you give up and stop doing something because it seems futile. I suppose that really depends on what it is doesn’t it, the action itself may give you motivation, or encouragement to keep going. All this despite the effects of it not achieving what you expected.
Why do I write blog posts? Simply because I like doing it. I enjoy the process and the publication more than seeking any affect. Sure, I hope that it does, in silence or publicly, affect someone in a passive way. But that is not what I publish for. It is not the reason, the reason is for me.
There are a million reasons for me to not hit publish, to not finish my writing, or even to start — but I can’t do it to myself not to do it. I want to create, I want to make new things, I want to publish things to the world for no other reason than I want to.
That is not to say that I don’t struggle with it, I find loads of reasons to never hit publish. I delete more Tweets than I leave up, and have a drafts folder numbering much larger than my published posts list, but I never stop doing it. What do you give up too easy on? What could you do more that you enjoy? Futility to you could be utility to others. Don’t stop what you enjoy because the reason to do it is enjoyment.
The Shiny New Thing
I can’t find the words to sum up my feelings towards the new iPhone line up other than meh. I was (un)lucky enough to not watch the event live due to other commitments, but managed to cram the whole 1hour event down to less than 10 minutes. It left me with a strange melancholy feeling of disappointment and indifference.
I don’t know what it is about the last few launches that have left me unmotivated to go out and buy one. It is understandable to get excited at the iPhone X because it was sodifferent from anything that had gone before, but I feel as if my excitement for iPhones died at that point. As nice as the new iPhone 5S looking design is, I don’t know where I get the value from switching to one.
The iPhone 12 is the phone most people should buy — for £200 less and seemingly only a camera lens removed — but the nerd in me feels like I am a Pro (I am a pro, right?). That I would be missing out on something, I would not be accepted into the Apple circle unless I spend all the money. The dichotomy of it all is that even whilst failing to find the value in the new phone, I know I still want one.
I still want to use it and see what it does for me, peeling that plastic off the screen and making all 2020s problems just drift away. That’s what Apple wants isn’t it. To sell me a dream of owning a thing that makes me feel better. A dream of filling that hole that we all feel inside (you feel it too I know you do) with hundreds and thousands of pounds spent.
I know all these things, I know that I am being manipulated, but I can still want the new shiny thing!
Roam Research As My Second Brain
I have only written very briefly about my rapid adoption of Roam Research to dump all of my stuff into. In depth words are hard for me to sum up, I struggle to even bring together an outline of how I use it, simply because it is so flexible and powerful. I use it for everything from meeting notes to journalling, I put almost everything that I think about in here to form my second brain.
This is a widely used term to describe the process of loading everything to another place. Most people associate this with a note app, but it doesn't have to be digital at all, it can simply be a notebook or task manager. I have tried this several times, and adopted Evernote and Apple Notes at different points in my life. Although they are both great apps, I could never access the information when I wanted to — or even better, when I wasn’t even aware I needed to.
By building out my second brain on Roam I can link together ideas that come from many places and piece them all together with ease. Of the notes apps I have tried, they make the process of storing and retrieving them liner by nature, whereas by using a bi-directional linking model, as Nat Eliason puts it, Roam allows “notes live nowhere and everywhere”.
New notes are created with minimal interaction, and because of the powerful underlying technology, ideas start to come together without any interaction from me. It only gets more useful the more information you put into it, linking together words and phrases that surface when I need them to. It is a strange system to get use to, and an expensive one to buy into, but it has already proven its worth for all aspects of my life and I truly can never go back.
Just The Price Of A Coffee
It's the age-old push back to a payment or subscription. What on earth are you moaning about it's just the cost of a coffee or two and month and you get all this stuff. That's fine if you can substitute your morning coffee for a note taking app, but what if you can’t — or it all just gets too much?
Subscription fatigue is becoming a real thing, and in times like these many people are starting to restructure their expenditure and find out what is essential to them. If you're paying the price of a coffee multiple times it soon adds up to a significant amount and who really wants to sacrifice their morning coffee anyway!
It’s far too easy to dive straight into paying a subscription because it is only a small amount of money each week. It’s just as easy to make your new app a subscription model and think about all the money you will be making each month. Users want to see value now more than ever, and developers deserve to receive money back for the development they put in. So “just the price of a coffee” shouldn’t be dismissed as an insignificant sum because that little expenditure is critical to both parties.
Before I Go
The last few sentences are the worst for me to write. I never know how to wrap up the words I have written above, but always want to hear more from you. Reach out to me on Twitter or email me back in replay. I would love to hear what you’re thinking about or any response you have to my words.
MembershipWhy Should I bother?Choose the membership level that suits you best and what content you want tohave access to, no pressure, no spam. I will also be giving members a sneak peak of upcoming podcast guests, shownotes and also the chance to appear on shows themselves. Sound like somethingyou want …Greg MorrisGreg Morris
Until next time, take the very best care of yourself.
Subscribe to Greg Thinks Things
Subscribe to the newsletter and unlock access to member-only content.