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Be More Functional

Variety of tips and tricks that help my ADHD brain keep my life more or less together, and might help you, too.

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Task prioritisation is fake

Task prioritisation is fake

Do or do not. There is no "prioritise"

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cleaning decluttering overwhelmed help

How to clean a cluttered space when you’re overwhelmed

No matter how cluttered your space is, remember it only has 5 things in it: trash, dishes, clothing, things that have a spot, things that don’t have a spot. Don’t look at the whole morass.

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Chronos is clock time, whereas kairos is living time.

Chronos vs Kairos: Understanding how the Ancient Greeks viewed time will make your life richer

“Chronos” is measured and counted, while “kairos” is lived and experienced

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frozen because i have a responsibility at any point in the future

The “I can’t start any tasks because I have an appointment in 5 hours” problem

If I have basically anything scheduled in a day, my brain goes into “waiting mode”. Like, that appointment is the next thing on the list, can’t do things out of order, so can’t do anything.

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Make your personal admin tasks slightly more delightful by renaming them

Make your personal admin tasks slightly more delightful by renaming them

One a lot of people do is making their passwords something fun to type. That's the right approach: something that makes you happy but is kept secret, so you can be unashamedly dorky.

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Why optimisers are always late

Why optimisers are always late

Optimisers break stuff because they try to carry everything down to the car in one go instead of making multiple trips.

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Leaving Facebook was easier than I expected

Leaving Facebook was easier than I expected

I'd been agonising about it for literally years so I had this plan where I was going to do it and then write to you about the Experience but it was frankly such a non-event that I don't have much to say.

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How to remember a new PIN / digit-based password

How to remember a new PIN / digit-based password

There's a set of digit mnemonics (created, as far as I know, by a Kevin Trudeau for some cassette-based memory-training course in 1995).

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Lukewarm water, not cold, is best for a burn

Lukewarm water, not cold, is best for a burn

Cold water also stops blood flowing to the area, and you need bloodflow to heal

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Keep your house less cluttered by dealing with greyspace

Keep your house less cluttered by dealing with greyspace

If you struggle with clutter, I bet you a billion dollars you don't have proper solutions for your greyspace stuff (grey as in, neither one thing nor the other)

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A few skincare tips / why you should avoid Lush

A few skincare tips / why you should avoid Lush

All citrus oils - lemon, grapefruit, tangerine, bergamot, yuzu - are irritants, and worse, they are UV-sensitising so if you use them during the day, you will increase the amount of damage sun does to you.

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Productivity tip: Interstitial journalling

Productivity tip: Interstitial journalling

Interstitial journalling is a minute or two of journalling that you do in between tasks to help you clear the old task out of your head and re-focus on the new task.

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The minor superpowers my food allergies give me

The minor superpowers my food allergies give me

This week's Whippet ended up collecting a couple of different articles on allergies/intolerances. I have a bunch of these, which is mostly annoying but gives me two superpowers. These are superpowers that you, who can eat anything, can easily grab for yourself, so I present them here: 1. Bring

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The secret to successful spinsterhood / living alone

The secret to successful spinsterhood / living alone

People usually put more effort into day-to-day life stuff when they do it with a partner. Successful spinsterhood is when you put that effort in for yourself.

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Never do sit-ups (seriously they're bad for your back)

Never do sit-ups (seriously they're bad for your back)

Stuart McGill, professor of spine biomechanics at the University of Waterloo, did an extensive series of studies, and they're just trash for your back.

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accepting invitations in advance and getting overwhelmed

Think carefully before accepting invitations that are weeks or months in advance

When someone invites you to something in the distant future, ask: Would I say Yes to it if it was this weekend?

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it gets harder to focus for long periods as you age

Your ability to focus declines after 30 (it’s not just because smartphones)

There are two totally separate systems that govern attention: your ability to maintain focus on the thing (‘enhancement’), and your ability to tune out other things (‘suppression’).

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It's not cheating to use the skills that make it easier for you

The Wile E. Coyote Principle: Stop doing things the hard way

Wile E. Coyote has some pretty good tools for catching prey, namely: teeth, claws etc. But he always uses methods he's unskilled at.

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the psychological principles that make a personal kanban so effective

How I used a personal kanban to stop my brain turning into soup during lockdown

Once you understand the psychological principles that make kanbans so powerful, you can apply them to any productivity system.

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wear fancy house clothes and feel better

Reasons to wear fancy houseclothes (written pre-pandemic)

They can be costumes, they can be the clothes you wish you would wear outside but won’t (my most recent robe is a rainbow space galaxy with sweeping sleeves and a watercolour unicorn on the back)

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more useful things to do than scrolling social media on your phone when you have to wait

11 things to do instead of scrolling social media when you have a few minutes to kill

Like your date’s gone to the bathroom, or your lunch is in the microwave. You probably don’t want to be so compulsive about your phone, but what else are you gonna do while you wait?

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best way to reheat pizza: the easiest good method and the still pretty easy great method

The best way to reheat pizza

The easiest method that still turns out good, and the only slightly more complicated method that turns out great.

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doing fun organisation stuff when you have unfinished chores

You’re allowed to do the fun organisation tasks even if you haven’t done the boring ones

People get excited about fun organisation tasks — making a pegboard or putting all your spices in mason jars, or something pretty and fun — but feel like they can't do them when the floor hasn’t been vacuumed.

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Why videogame music is perfect focus music

Why videogame music is perfect focus music

Videogame music is specifically designed to get you into a rhythmic flow. It’s intended to be a background to a focused task.

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trick to improve your drawing

How to instantly draw slightly better (even if your starting place is 'terrible')

Look ahead of the line you’re drawing, not at the tip of your utensil where it meets the canvas!