Weeknote for 7/24/2022

Productivity

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I am this close to having my Notion workspace in a usable state. Last week I set up 90% of the Bulletproof Workspace. This week I’ll add the finishing touches, and then I’ll start adapting it to my system. I’m looking forward to implementing in Notion the features of my system I’ve been conducting in Nirvana, Evernote, and Google Sheets. Bulletproof is available as a template for $150. But implementing it myself taught me important features of Notion, notably database templates, relations, and rollups. I still need to learn about formulas to complete the setup.

Some of Bulletproof applies more obviously to a business than to an individual’s personal life. For example, I might get used to referring to the organizations I deal with as “brands,” but it’s hard to see how I’d have sales stages for most of them. But it’ll be interesting to see if I can adapt Bulletproof to my life-as-a-business approach. I’m especially curious about finding possible objectives and key results to track.

People skills

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Conversation Analysis: An Introduction by Jack Sidnell reminded me how much I value the tool of close reading. The book covers the history, methods, and basic findings of its field by walking the reader through many examples. As I see it, conversation analysis is the equivalent of a close reading in literary criticism, which is an intensive analysis of a text that examines each word or phrase and interprets its meaning and how it fits into the whole piece.

Conversation analysis treats this method as scientific observation that can reveal how conversation works. It treats conversation as machinery that people use together to accomplish certain actions using mechanisms that conversation analysts call practices. There are practices for greeting someone, exchanging names, taking turns, making offers, acknowledging irony, starting a story, repairing conversational problems, ending a conversation, and more.

Close reading is half my MO for grappling with any complicated issue. If I can get a basic model of conversation and a method for closely reading it, I can use conversation’s hidden machinery to understand and engineer solutions to problems in conversational situations that I can’t solve intuitively yet, that leave me stuck in my ruts. My sense is that studying this book would put me well on my way.

Food

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Barissimo Adventure Blend Ground Coffee: 3/5. I had a rocky start with this one. It seemed hard to control the sourness. Then it somehow evened out, so I don’t know what to make of that. But I accidentally bought another bag, so I’m giving it another chance.

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