On weeks that have felt as long as this one, a glass of wine on the sofa in front of a great film seems like the best way to end it. Tonight’s movie choice, Gladiator. 🎥📺

Netflix has got some brilliant older films on at the moment. Tonight’s viewing while I sorted my online groceries order, Star Gate. Despite seeing it several times before, it’s oddly engrossing! 📺 🎥

Made the mistake of reading Twitters trending topic for Billy Graham. Disgusted by the hate filled posts, but I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

Things 3.4 Brings Powerful New Automation Features and App Integrations ›

I’ve been using Things since version 3 came out and found it to be the best task app around, with one exception, the ability to automate task creation was a bit limited. This new version fixes that, and goes a lot further than I thought I needed.

MacStories have a great article that highlights some of the possibilities using the new, and very comprehensive, URL scheme found in Things 3.4. I’ve already spent some time this evening updating a couple of Workflows that I use to create tasks, looking forward to seeing what else I can do thanks to this update.

A bit of late night work done tonight. Probably not the best idea, but sometimes you just have to run with it when focus and flow arrive when you’ve been struggling to find it all day.

Letter Play

When I was back home at my parents over Christmas I sorted through a couple of boxes of bits that were taking up some space in the room I sleep in when I’m there. During the process I came across some of my old sketchbooks from my Art Foundation course and had a flick through.

I was struck by how different they were compared to the notebooks I’ve been keeping for the last few years. They were full of creativity. Each page was different, whether it was exploring my own ideas on a project, or a contextual spread about a designer or artist that inspired me.

The last couple of days have been odd ones for me. After many months of not feeling much of the effects of my depression, yesterday when I woke up I could feel the heaviness and fog of it. I had the same thing this morning, so I’ve done what is the only thing I can do. I’ve tried to push on and not let it stop me doing my work.

This evening I put a film on, one of my favourites, Good Will Hunting and grabbed my sketch book, a scalpel, two magazines I get free from Waitrose, a pritt-stick, and my Bible. I flicked to one of my favourite verses and while I watched the film I sat on the floor cutting out words and letters.

It’s been a long time since I did anything like this and about ten minutes before the film finished I had finished. It might’ve taken me a lot longer than I remember it taking, but for those two hours there was no fog and I was just able to enjoy being absorbed in something a little more creative than my normal design work.

It’s Micro Monday on Micro.blog and I figured it was time to share another nomination since its been a few weeks since my last one. This time I’m recommending @EddieHinckle who has excellent taste in books!

📚 Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking

Author: Susan Cain
Published: 2012
Rating: ★★★★★
Finished on: 13/02/2018

I don’t normally read psychology related books, but this one caught my attention and intrigued me a great deal. I’m an introvert, multiple Myers Briggs tests tell me I’m an INFJ—the rarest of them all—and for a few years I’ve struggled with how to harness my personality to work for me as a freelance designer.

The book is a fascinating read and one which I recommend introverts and extraverts read, it will help both personality types understand each other a bit more. What was most interesting to me is some of the chapters about the effects of our culture on introverted children and how that affects their ability to learn and progress in life. Also of real interest were the chapters about faking extraversion to help overcome some of the issues many introverts battle, I’m still mulling over some of the strategies that were highlighted, especially those in regard to running your own business.

This is a book I will be returning to in the future, I’m already looking to grab a copy of my own for such a time.

Depression is a funny thing. Sometimes, out of no where, it hits you with a bad day and the prospect of doing anything takes a monumental effort.

Establishing New Habits Without Apps ›

I’ve been trying to establish some new habits lately so this was a timely post from CJ Chilvers. I’ve been using the app Streaks like he mentions to keep focused on some of my habits, but there is a certain lack of accountability that goes with it. When a big streak gets broken it’s very hard to find the energy to start again.

One thing I’ve found a bit easier to face when starting—or restarting—a project is to break it down to months. Define the goal, decide to begin it at the start of the next month, and then make sure you’re ready to go in the time in between. The space allows you to process what you’re aiming to accomplish, and allows you the time you need to make sure you’re ready to get going.

Pretty sure there was just a minor earthquake tremor in Cheltenham.

Watching some skeleton in the Winter Olympics. They’re absolutely nuts.

Watched Slumdog Millionaire for the first time this evening. Not sure why it took me so long to see it, really enjoyed it. 🎬

My Secret Battle – a Grief Shared ›

This week I can across the blog is Simon Thomas. He’s a Sky Sports presenter and a Christian, known by many in the U.K. He lost his wife to cancer in September last year and has been blogging about his grief. This week he shared a post about his Secret Battle with depression and anxiety.

It’s a very honest and open account of the battle he has, and still is, facing. I have a great admiration for anyone who is able to post so publicly about their battle with mental health. I have attempted to write many times about my own struggle with depression, it is not an easy thing to do. I’m thankful that Simon has a strong faith in God that is helping him through this time. My own faith helped me in my darkest time, and I have witnessed the faith of others close to me help them. I am forever thankful for this.

From my walk to work yesterday morning, an absolutely stunning sunrise.

My walk to work this morning was in day light. My walk home from work this evening was in day light. It’s amazing the effect this has had on my mood today. It actually felt like there was still some of the day left when I got home.

📚 Red Rising (Red Rising Saga, #1)

Author: Pierce Brown
Published: 2014
Rating: ★★★★☆
Finished on: 10/02/2018

At the start of the year I needed a new fiction series to read, and I’d seen this one recommended on a few sites so I decided to give it a go. I quite enjoyed it, the story was entertaining and I found myself engaging with the characters well. What I liked about this book was the mixture of settings that allows the reader to put their imagination to work building these different environments. It provided a good way of shutting my brain down at the end of the day. What’s most telling is that I’ve made a start on the second book in the series, that’s usually a good sign that I enjoyed the first.

Not sure why I’ve never looked into using svg files for logo’s on websites until today. They look so good on retina displays and more economical than multiple image sizes.

Siri has stopped working with third party apps for tasks, it just keeps telling me I need to continue in the app. Driving me mad.

Starting to feel the value in my recent Sunday night routine, emptying inboxes, last bits of tidying up around the flat and then planning my week out. It makes a real difference to my productivity and focus on a Monday morning.