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Weekly Good Things: Week 41
The Next Three. Creating a feeling. Weekly Good Eats.
Hello to you!
Exquisite blooms from our mid-day walk today. I spent the morning on a “noticing walk” where I stop doom-scrolling, skip the earbuds and focus on my surroundings (and the dog). Things I noticed:
Seasonally confused plants – summer blooms including pansies! flowering succulents, lots of bees everywhere.
Halloween decorations - particular interests include the neighbors one-upping each other on life size cinema-quality props.
How nice freshly laid asphalt is to walk on - they re-did part of the carriageway on Comm ave, and now I don’t have to be overly focused on pot holes.
In what was another deeply challenging week – how do you focus on work when your thoughts and fears are elsewhere? – my practice is to slow down and notice, take plenty of mental health breaks, and actively sign off the internet when I’m unable to set boundaries for myself.
This week I had the team at my house for an on-site, including flying in Hannah! We’re getting started on our November program which will be a four week “Ompractice Slow Down” focused on mindfulness before the holidays. I’m going to resist going overboard with theming, but any excuse to promote sloths, slow loris, snails get me incredibly excited.
Getting Things Moving: The Next Three
Are you feeling stalled? Looking to move things forward? Enter the framework of your 'Next Three’.
I keep running lists for all different areas of life and work, but one of the best ways to actually make progress is by breaking these into smaller, more manageable groupings: my ‘Next Three’. By focusing only on the next three, I’m less likely to get overwhelmed, and more likely to follow through.
‘Next Three’ is also a lifesaver when you are dealing with exhaustion or decision fatigue.
Practicing ‘Next Three’ is a lesson in prioritization. It can help if you’ve been stalling or stuck in a task that requires you do a lot of consecutive or complicated steps - it breaks down any larger project into easier pieces.
Most of the time my next three are for practical box-checking, but I also use it for breaking down big goals and wild dreams. (And sometimes it’s three - sometimes it’s just one!)
Here’s a short list of some of this week’s “Next Three” examples (with some of them listed out for you).
Tomorrow’s Next Three Most Important Tasks: weekly exec meeting where we review analytics and focus on un-blocking folks; weekly sales outreach review, and prepping for my quarterly organizing session at home.
Things to watch: John Wick 4. Past Lives. Fast X. New episodes of Our Flag Means Death, Sabrina, Loki.
Next Three Errands: sit down to print out return slips and head to the UPS store. Manicure. Break down cardboard.
Books to finish: (all currently in progress) Jennifer Armentrout’s Grace and Glory (meh but it’s book 3 in a series!), Extra Focus by Jesse Anderson, Richard Kadrey’s The Pale House Devil.
Work Related: next dream business partnerships, next sales outreach, connectors to reach out to, collateral to create, content to write, customers to talk to.
Friends to reach out to: who haven’t I talked to in my inner circle this week? Who lights me up?
Is there an area of your life you could get more specific? If three feels overwhelming, start with one. What’s your next action? What’s your ‘Next Three’?
This Week in Good Things
When we look back at someone and realize they are fundamentally so much cooler than we realized? In memory of a wonderful human: my preschool teacher, Cecily Larson died this week. I spent several days thinking about her legacy. For much of my childhood I thought of her as the calming and proper British voice in my head reminding me to be a kind human. (Except that one time she put the fear of God in me for lying about having a Martin Luther King sleeping bag in Kindergarten.) Looking back, she was actually a wild adventurer? There is just so much to admire about her. She took Montessori training in the early 60s, and ended up running her own school. She was one of my first “bosses” when I helped out at her summer camps, and she was a model of an excellent boss and peer – my mom worked for her for many years! She was funny – with both British and Midwestern humor having wandered from the UK to Minnesota. After retirement, she and her husband Dale hopped into the RV and spent much of the past twenty years traveling on grand adventures all over the country, helping people, and building community wherever they went.
Every month, my friend Kathy and I pick a bucket list restaurant to visit. This week I went to Fox + Knife. While the food overall was underwhelming, the vibes and service were *lovely*. Milanese di Maiale was very good! As was the sip I had of Kathy’s drink, which I thought was stellar. (Last month was O Ya, so it was a super high bar.) Also, I had the singularly most peculiar dessert I’ve tried in a while: it was a honeynut squash budino which I can only describe as eating salted butter cream with a hint of squash?
Good Things to Think About
🧠 Being intentional about how we want people to feel. Whether in our writing, or creating a program, hosting a meeting or event, or speaking at a conference – I think it’s incredibly valuable to think about how you want people to feel at the end of the interaction. What is the Vibe? Energy? (Generally speaking I think it’s good to think about how people feel in most interactions – but this is something you can talk about as a group!)
🖐 Asking good questions. I co-led a workshop this week, and I'm always looking for good questions that help people get to know each other, dig deeper, and start conversation. “What are you proud of today?” sparked very good conversation at our event.
🤝 Equitable household labor. My friend Kathy recently moved in with her (lovely) partner, and they’ve been using the Fair Play Deck to gamify chores and open conversations about partnership, emotional labor, and more.
Other Good Things
Interesting Apps: a neighborhood friend introduced me to the Cloud-a-Day app - and also taught me how to photograph cloud halos. Speechify reads anything out loud to you with a range of great voices to choose from.
Creativity: I enjoy‘s weekly blog posts. I ordered a new sticker from Plum Press Studio (Richard Persimmons!). This blog post - data visualization of moving costs.
David Beckham seems like a genuinely good person. I’ve queued up his Netflix documentary this week, but very much enjoyed clips of him gently calling out his wife for pretending to be working class, and this video of him eating Korean food and talking about being a role model. (I’d never seen any of the videos from this creator, and also enjoyed this video 13 minutes of him eating at a Michelin Chinese restaurant in Macao.
This shade of Le Creuset.
The Weekly Meal Plan:
When life becomes challenging, eating becomes hard.
There’s a great paradox for me – I’m deeply passionate about food, food as creative outlet, food as community building, memory stoking, food as comfort – and some days, I have no energy to make any decisions about eating, prepped food feels un-appealing, and all I have the sensory capacity for is a bowl of something in a single muted color. (I’m looking at you box of Annie’s or cold cubed tofu.)
So I meal plan as an offering to my future self – decisions made. I keep backups when I’m not able to cook, freezer re-heats, places to pick up food, decisions pre-made for myself.
I do still love to think about possibilities though! If I hit 50% of planned ideas I’m happy!
Sunday: Roasted Cauliflower and Ditalini pasta with butter and cheese
Monday: Cold tofu with peanut sauce, crunchy salad with fried onion
Tuesday: Kimchi-jjigae from Maangchi
Wednesday: Broccoli with balsamic and blue cheese with tuna
Thursday: Flexible (I’ll be out in Western Mass presenting to a class!)
Friday: Leftover fridge things or takeout
Lunches: TJs quick grab burrito, TJs Indian meals (lamb vindaloo, palak paneer, and vegetable biryani), challah with Tirokafteri cheese spread, yogurt with mix-ins.
Snacks: Amylu cacio pepe chicken sausage, hard boiled eggs, overnight oats, cottage cheese, yogurt.
Treat: cooking project - Boiled Cider. (An exercise in patience, you simply boil down a gallon of cider over several hours. The house smells fabulous and “fall”.
That’s all for now! Hope you have a great week!
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