πŸ”₯ outputs only
I want to shift my thinking towards creating and building only. This "project" will be used to keep me accountable.
26 entries
First: May 31, 2020
1 contributor
Evolution of Note-Taking
Draft for Kaizen

Sent out my 53rd newsletter today. I'm getting much better at writing them and I personally find they are also more interesting.

I'm also trying a bunch of new things as well. I'm really treating my newsletter as a product that I want to grow.

Finally found a good direction for my newsletter.

Still needs a bit of tweaking, but I'm definitely on the right path.

Tried to turn my Twitter thoughts into a potential article.

I think this has the potential to be really good. I would want to elaborate on concepts such as an "information loop" and the importance on closing them for your brain to think properly.

Dumb title though, I will definitely change that,

Didn't have as much as time as I wanted to, but I'm happy I just did something. Obviously still needs a lot of improvement. Just throwing some ideas on a board and will optimize after.

Another potential draft on competition.

In my thoughts only feed, I mentioned how today someone else launched a very similar idea to mine and was pretty down about it.

It took me a few minutes, but I actually have fire burning inside and I'm actually super excited to compete and show how much better my product is. I really thrive on competition. It might not be entirely healthy, but I love it.

Started the first draft of a potential newsletter topic.

It's a reminder to myself to do more things that you actually want to do and enjoy learning about instead of doing things because of the potential rewards that MIGHT come after it.

Continued my design homework.

It looks a bit better than yesterday. Still unsure if I should actually show the table of contents or just tuck it away in a menu bar.

Big item left is try and fit in the table and then playing around with the URL links. Want to find something nicer than just the normal blue url link.

Started the Wiki redesign for my design homework.

Definitely the hardest thing I've done yet because there are so many things wrong with the website that I have no idea where to start.

But after around an hour, I was able to get some things done. Here are some reminders to myself for next time:

1 - Set yourself time to design.
Unless you are explicitly told what to design, the first steps are usually exploratory. Meaning that you don't have defined next steps. So it's almost impossible to tell yourself that you will "finish design x today" because you can't estimate the amount of work to be done. Instead, tell yourself "I will design for x number of hours today." This will give you the impression that it's "ok to fail" and will allow you to actually start even if the task feels very difficult.

2 - If you are overwhelmed, select just one section and focus on that.
In this case, I chose to start with just the title and intro paragraph. I decided to erase everything else so that I would only focus on that portion of the design.

3 - Try to vomit as many designs as possible. The lower-fidelity, the better.
What's difficult is that I don't have a design process. So I basically just try a bunch of things, usually element by element, until I get something that looks OK and roll with it.
But I feel like it's a really inefficient way to design.
Instead, I tried to visualize the final design and tried to quickly place every required element (in lo-fidelity) so that I can at least have a bigger picture of what the final design would look like. This is similar to when I first start writing as well - I try to vomit as many words as possible and then refine it so that it makes more sense only afterwards.

Published my 49th newsletter today. I didn't really have time to work on it, but it's actually not that bad considering the time I spent on it.

So super happy about the final result.

I sadly didn't prioritize well my week last week and now I'm scrambling to find something for my newsletter tomorrow.

Thankfully, I did a lot of introspection today post-move and have a lot of different thoughts about different areas so decided that I will talk about those.

Wrote my first draft on that today and will hopefully write at least 1 more before my final version.

Uhaul Redesign
was supposed to pick up my Uhaul truck at 9am and ended up leaving at 10am. And this was actually supposed to take me a lot less than that since I even chose "mobile" pickup to get out of there faster.
Although the mobile pickup worked relatively well, there are still super big flaws with the user experience that created this 1h delay and could've easily been fixed with better UX either through their website or even in-store.
So there I was thinking of UX improvements while I was waiting in line.
So the reason why I actually had to go in-line was that while I was getting my account verified (this is what you need to do when you choose mobile pickup), in one of the steps, it actually reminded me that I may want to pick-up some plastic bags for my mattresses.
What's dumb was that it asked me WHILE I WAS DOING THE PICKUP. Meaning that if I forgot to buy it, then I had to go in-store and actually buy it.
The better way to do this was to ask me while I was actually checking out online. That way, they would be able to add it in the truck I was picking up. That way I would be able to just go ahead and leave.
If that wasn't possible, the other alternative would be to offer a self-checkout. Usually, there is only 1 or maximum 2 employees at the Uhaul's I've been too. But the thing is, not every customer that comes is equal. Some might be coming and have actually no idea what they want and take actually 30 min to finally get the truck that they want (this is what happened to me today), some clients chose in-person pick-up so they would be waiting in-line, but some people know exactly what they need to buy and just need to pay and go (yup, that's me). It doesn't make sense that I HAVE to wait all this time just to pay for something, where as if there were a self-check out, I would be out and about already.
That would not only create a better customer experience, it would actually make sure that people waiting in line are actually people that need service from the employees.

Wrote a small outline with notes jotted-down of how design is helping me navigate through my fear of failure or fear of uncertainties

I spent around 2 months going through 5 exercises for my UI Class, but I was able to get through 3 these past 2 weeks.

I've never been this excited about learning something in a while. Definitely feels amazing and I hope it continues.

Really random thought I had today when I realized that it wasn't enough to just summarize articles.

By summarizing articles, you have a better understanding of what you read, but you are not providing more value, you are just re-iterating the same value.

That's why summarizing articles is just a stepping-stone until you are able to form your own thoughts about the subject.

The best way to form your own thoughts is by creating evergreen notes (https://notes.andymatuschak.org/Evergreen_notes).

This design summarizes these thoughts. I lowkey also really wanted to fit in Bulbasaur.

Released my 48th newsletter on Substack.

Last two newsletters have been much better. I'm going much more in-depth in the articles that I read instead of giving one-liner summaries. It forces me to actually understand what I read. However, I still need to find a way to put my own opinion on these articles. Either lessons that I've learned or try to incorporate my personal thoughts.

I want to start advertising my newsletter on Linkedin and Twitter, but still unsure of the format.


Did some copywork for my UI Design class.

Replicated Producthunt since I'm using it as inspiration for an upcoming project.

Completed my third draft for my newsletter on Tuesday.

Also did some note-taking on Naval's most recent podcast and my goal is to create evergreen notes for it tomorrow. Which should be my next output for Futureland.


Pasquale D'Silva on Twitter

β€œmakers > talkers maker only twitter would be so dope”

Draft - Focus on outputs above all

One thing I've always struggled with is the fact that I tend to consume a lot more than what I build or create. I've been getting a lot better recently and have even implemented a weekly plan to make sure that I get things done.
However, my overall output still wasn't improving. On one part, I still think that I'm trying to do too many things at the same time which is spreading my attention thin. This means that instead of doing 1 or 2 things really really well, I'm doing 4-5 things really badly instead.
This week I also stumbled on this tweet and it really resonated with me.
It resonated me for two reasons. One is because I agree with this tweet. Makes > Talkers, but I also got triggered by it because I know that I'm not there yet. I still talk way too much instead of actually building things.
I still get stuck into loops of fake productivity (aka taking notes, highlighting articles, reading Twitter) and don't do enough building (working on my project, improving my design skills and writing my blog posts).
That's where [[Futureland]] comes in. Futureland is an app that I recently discovered that it's a social platform, but focused on projects instead of people.
And the vibes are really sick too. Just take a few seconds to check the trailer and you'll understand what I mean.
I love the idea of [[Futureland]] because I've always wanted to build something similar. What I loved from Pioneer was that if you were working on a startup, you would be able to share your work in public and could get feedback from peers. But that was also the problem. What if I didn't have an idea yet? And I was exploring multiple things. I still had multiple projects that I would want to track and see progress, but it's not really something I would be able to share on Pioneer.
But with Futureland, anything can be a project. You can share your art, your new game that your building and even progress on a skill you're learning such as violin.
Futureland doesn't care about who you are and what your background is. Futureland only cares about the cool things you are doing and are willing to share with others. That's why Futureland is so interesting to me.
I'll be using Futureland to keep myself accountable and to make sure that I focus on building and creating instead of just consuming. I want to make sure that I would have more outputs than before.
That's why the first project that I created in Futureland is called "πŸ”₯ Outputs only". My goal is that every day, I would post at least one output that I created during the day in Futureland. Another cool feature that is included is the number of consecutive days that I've been posting an update for my project, which further incentivizes me to create.
So what exactly do I define as an output?
I want to make sure that I create something every day, but I also didn't want to force myself to create big things like a blog post or a full design every day. I know myself and I know that it definitely wouldn't be sustainable.
I tried to think of the most atomic units of creation for each of the outputs that I would want.
Instead of an article, an acceptable form of output would be an Evergreen note, a tweet that provides value or a draft.
Instead of a full design, a design component or a completed homework from the design course I'm currently taking.
It's only been 3 days that I've been doing it, but it's working so far. If you want to keep up with my work, feel free to try out Futureland yourself and follow me on it.
Here's to hoping that the next time I see a tweet that says maker > talker, I'll be on the good side of the equation.

alxndr πŸ”₯ outputs only