Thursday, May 26, 2022

Taking Care of Yourself: Some Tools & Tips from the Archives

 

This article is for the work-weary professional, manager or anyone else who feels swamped, is always getting interrupted and who feels like screaming in frustration! The selections below are from my collection Inspirations: Optimize Your Attitude, Maximize Your Results. These three are hand-picked to inspire you to take care of yourself, reclaim your humanity, enhance your job satisfaction and find some peace of mind.

Set and respect "office hours."


This excerpt from The Project Management Minimalist is a short pep talk and set of practical guidelines that will help you set aside uninterruptible office hours so you can be more productive and get into that "flow" state in which we all do our best work. 
 
Check out the book excerpt.

Leverage your signature strengths.


There is much happiness, emotional satisfaction and, arguably, higher-quality output to be had when you are doing what you are purpose-built to do.  Are you leveraging your "signature strengths?"  Learn more in this excerpt from The Project Management Minimalist.


Check out the book excerpt.

Is it time to go "off the grid?"


Ever feel like running away and simply disappearing for a while? Getting lost, going completely off the grid, can be one of the most energy-renewing, creativity-enhancing and simply joyful things you can do!  This article from the archives makes the case for doing so.  


Check out the article.


Get The Project Management Minimalist from Amazon or as a free PDF.

If you find the preceding samples to be valuable, why not go a little deeper. Specifically:

Enjoy! 

Thursday, April 28, 2022

Music to Get Lost In: A Brief Introduction to Jam Bands


What's a jam band?


I like all kinds of music: blues, rock, psychedelic, R&B, jazz and ocassionally even folk/bluegrass and their offshoots. And I especially like long, well-developed performances that I can get lost in -- the kind of music that musicians love playing as they engage a melody and soar side by side like the Blue Angels in tight formation and then diverge into solo musical loops and barrel rolls, eventually converging back at the melody where they started. This kind of musical aerobatics is the domain of the jam band. 

In introducing its comprehensive and always-growing list of jam bands, Wikipedia summarizes:  "Jam band performances often feature extended musical improvisation ('jams') over rhythmic grooves and chord patterns, and long sets of music that cross genre boundaries."  

Elsewhere, Wikipedia traces jam band origins: "The jam-band musical style spawned from the psychedelic rock movement of the 1960s. The Grateful Dead and The Allman Brothers Band became notable for their live improvisational jams and regular touring schedules, which continued into the 1990s." Wikipedia also identifies the "stylistic origins" of jam bands to include:  jazz, folk, country, psychedelic rock, progressive rock, jazz fusion, blues, rock, and Southern rock. In fact, many jam band tracks (songs) seem to slide effortlessly among several of these musical genres within the same piece. 

(Rather not read my wise & wonderful background info? Then scroll down & start listening.)

What's so great about jam band music?

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

Book Review -- "Flashing Back: Coming of Age in the American 1960s"

Amazon Listing for Flashing Back: Coming of Age in the American 1960s

[Note: As a baby boomer and a survivor of the 1960s, I found this to be one of the most powerful and authentic books I've ever read. Below is my heartfelt review & recommendation. - Mike G.]

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"The wall on which the prophets wrote is cracking at the seams..." - from King Crimson's "Epitaph," 1969

The 1960s were a swirling maelstrom of assassinated heroes, civil rights and racial strife, and the draft turning young men too young to vote (or even needing to shave every day) into cannon fodder, compelling them to kill and die in an unpopular war for reasons still unfathomable. The walls on which our prophets wrote cracked and crumbled as we discovered our institutions victimizing us rather than serving us. An entire generation called “bullshit” on the whole thing. Finding ourselves groping along an uncharted path, we tried to figure out what was going on and how we could survive. We got high. We protested and raised hell in the streets, and at our family dinner tables. Our new, over-amplified music blasted our ideals at deafening levels, a unifying force too loud to ignore. We hit the road partying, leaving the draft, the war, and Ward Cleaver’s America in our rear-view mirror. This disaffected population demographic coalesced into a counterculture of alienated youth with long hair, weird clothes, and loud music: the hippie-freaks. It was indeed a long, strange trip. It was also a passionate trip, a trip motivated by a genuine search for justice, freedom, truth, spirit, and personal authenticity.