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Between my own sites and working on client sites, I've had loads of Wordpress issues. And I do not, in any way, consider myself adept at fixing them. I've been lucky enough to work with programmers who could fix issues for client sites. For my own sites, updating plugins worked sometimes. Other times I reinstalled the latest version of WP to somehow kick out the problem.
I basically have a list of "maybe this will work" solutions that I try.
Great tip on disabling plugins. I hadn't heard that one before.
1 year, 7 months ago on WordPress Won’t Load? Don’t panic… Here’s what to do!
I think I have frontier projects every few hours, though I'm spending the bulk of my time in working towards financial freedom (AKA "kill the credit card debt"). It's inapplicable to my blogging and my day job in the sense that I'm not going to start writing money-saving guides or anything like that. But, the hard work now is to free up more time for the frontier projects in the future.
1 year, 7 months ago on The Unexpected Benefits of ‘Foolhardy’ Challenges
You make a great point about our plans not always fitting the actuality of our lives. I'm far too ambitious with what I think I can accomplish in a certain amount of time, and I begin to feel the pressure of falling behind as a greater discouragement to finishing. I think that flexibility will have to play a larger role in life plans going forward.
1 year, 8 months ago on In Which We Talk About System Failures (Complete with Examples)
I have sooo many tech-things I'm trying to dig into more effectively in terms of programming and software. As long as I take it in small chunks, I can pick up the information I need. But I can really get overwhelmed by trying to take in too much info at once.
That said, I am completely unsavvy with automobiles. I'm not interested in learning, and I have no patience with the things. I feel like I should -- but not enough to take the time to learn it, though.
I'm working hard at drawing some boundaries on which subjects are worth large chunks of time and which are clearly not (for me).
1 year, 8 months ago on You will never become tech-savvy (if you believe that)
This is a great discussion piece, Ethan. Email responder series may be less in vogue than they were a few years ago, but the best freebie I ever got came from Sean Platt's Ghostwriter Dad site. He's moved on to writing fiction now, but the series was a very in-depth look at what it takes to be a copywriter or ghostwriter with very practical steps.
I've received plenty of clunkers, too, but that example always stands out in my mind.
1 year, 8 months ago on Is your email list bonus helping you or shooting you in the foot?
I've found myself over the past several weeks stopping out of over-stimulation and just being still, waiting to catch up with myself. It's been a very real process of re-evaluating in which parts of my life I want to invest.
I like the idea of going quietly among the noise and haste. The rest of the world isn't slowing down. It's a choice that we have to make, but that seems doable. I don't actually have to slow down the rest of the world, just me.
By the way, where did the "violent and original" quote come from?
1 year, 8 months ago on Desiderata: How to Enjoy Serenity and Focus
"Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to all even to the dull and ignorant; they too have their story."
I get caught up in listening to only a select few voices in the thoughts that they'll have all the answers I need, but life is too messy for that. Kernels of wisdom are in the strangest places, even the "dull and ignorant." I can only find that wisdom through clear communication - sharing and listening.
1 year, 8 months ago on That Which is Necessary or Desired
The biggest strategy I've adopted is the first one you mentioned here. By simply relaxing and not being so conscientious all the time, I've felt much more comfortable with the work I've produced. And because I'm not freaking out about every turn of phrase, I can write more.
It can still get a lot better, but at least the process is easier.
1 year, 8 months ago on Ooh! Ask Me!: "How do I consistently sound like me?"
@ethanwaldman If you have time to invest in one resource, check out Moz's Beginner Guide to SEO: http://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo. It's absolutely great, and the blog always keeps me up to date.
Following their stuff, check out Copyblogger (http://www.copyblogger.com/blog/) and Neil Patel (http://www.quicksprout.com/). They're my go-to resources.
1 year, 8 months ago on The key to successful air travel (and dealing with technology)
Yeah, I've definitely been running late with air travel before, and I got there when I got there. Not a lot I could do about it.
The framework I can think of off the top of my head is the one I use for SEO. You can't know for certain what search engines will decide is important, so always put the reader / client / customer first. Focus on user experience and cover the basics of SEO, and you're off to an incredible start.
This is always a source of struggle for me. I always think I can push hard enough to make something amazing happen, yet it never works out. It's the steady work that adds up to something decent. And even though I know that to be true, I'm still tempted to spend just a few more hours.
Between all the posts I'm reading this week, I'm definitely getting the message on prioritizing. And I'm glad. I always need the reminders.
1 year, 9 months ago on Pay the Danegeld, Never Be Rid of the Danes
The funny thing about this post is that I listened to it on Pocket while trying to get some reports done for work. I was causing congestion with the exact advice meant to undo it! Of course, I felt sheepish once I heard what you had to say about clearing your head.
So, yes. I agree! I'm ready to get rid of some congestion in a big way. I've started with the weekly reviews, and they've been tremendously helpful. And I think that the morning pages would be a big boost, too. Thanks!
1 year, 9 months ago on Two Kinds of Mental Congestion and Three Ways to Clear Them Up
It's like the way that digital artists brought human-like movement to the screen. They had to start tracking actual humans. I remember the first time I watched Iron Man and thought, "Digital works here because he's supposed to look like a robot. Well played."
Great thoughts here. I get so very disappointed when I try to control too much. There just isn't a good enough system to account for every eventuality.
1 year, 9 months ago on We Are Always Falling
Definitely digging the new design. Learning code is incredibly rewarding for bloggers since it gives you the opportunity to control so much more about the presentation of your work. I can remember being much less frustrated with WordPress and other content management systems when I could switch to code view and get around some of the quirkiness of the systems.
1 year, 10 months ago on The Big Unveil: Welcome to the New Remade By Hand!
@Shanna Mann Because I'm in the SEO / online marketing space, I find that Google+ is helpful. Lots of people within that community lose that network. I also get a kick out of quick interactions on Twitter.
1 year, 10 months ago on Advice for People ‘Living the Dream’
My challenge is sort of on the opposite end of the spectrum. I can get so wrapped up in finding motivation that I lose the discipline to keep getting things done. I tend to rely on bursts of motivation to get things done instead of just plowing through the challenges at hand.
That said, community is a major boost in keeping me going. Getting the chance to chat with others in the same space provides me with new insight and energy.
I really struggle to do something fun solely for the sake of fun. TV watching gets to be pretty boring pretty quickly unless I'm watching something for research (documentaries, TED videos, etc.)
Still, I find myself burning out if I don't take time completely away from anything "work" related. My brain stops processing new information, and I end up staring at a book or a blog without comprehending.
I try to read fiction purely for the sake of reading whenever I can. It's one way I know that I can try something different without an agenda involved.
1 year, 10 months ago on Work vs Play vs Rest
Great post, Shannon. My newest advance is the new day job, but there is plenty to consolidate before trying to start any new initiatives there. I have to get my head around this method of work before I go any further.
1 year, 11 months ago on The Art of Consolidation: Keeping What You’ve Captured
My productivity booster is pretty close to @Shanna Mann's. I use headphones with some type of music to help block out background noise whether I'm at home or the day job, and that definitely increases my output. I just can't focus on more complex tasks when I hear too many conversations.
1 year, 11 months ago on The productivity advice that you never listen to (it’s the only thing that works)
Wow. I'm really excited to try out Focus at Will. I've started listening to a lot of ambient music and music without lyrics in the past year, so that sounds like it'd be right up my alley.
I'm also an Evernote junkie. I grow more dependent on that service ev every day. Great list, Shanna!
1 year, 11 months ago on 8 Recommended Tools and Services for Streamlining Your Workflow
I'm certainly in more of a pivoting phase than slaying phase at the moment, but I find that having strong deadlines (self-imposed or not) along with a sense of purpose play a huge role in my efforts. Getting stuck wondering what all the effort is for is my quickest way to get derailed - much more so than any external temptation.
Committing to short-term projects are helpful for me to avoid some of that existential pondering and to just get stuff done. By stringing together a number of smaller projects that are related to the same overall goal, I can trick myself into more giant-slaying actions.
1 year, 12 months ago on Channel Your Inner Giant-Killer When Your Back Is Against The Wall
I'm all about iterations. From career path to artistic pursuits, I continually make adjustments.
I had a blog a few years ago that I realized was not working at all, and I just stopped using that one entirely. It was a shift I needed to make to find a subject and a community that I enjoyed working with much more.
Realizing that I'm not going to unveil some perfect solution along the way has been rather freeing. It offers the opportunity to keep iterating and growing.
Have a great time with your travels!
1 year, 12 months ago on Stop flailing. Start iterating.
This weekend I read two books. That never happens for me. I feel pretty proud when I finish a book over any period of time, but I got started on these books that both touched parts of me profoundly and I finished them in a single day each.
Reading is becoming my self-edification. It's what keeps the words flowing and my inspiration alive in so many areas of my life right now.
2 years ago on Paying Attention to the Inner Journey
Both systems definitely have their advantages. Thanks for pointing out both.
I've moved blogs across domains, and it was a lot of work. Transferring images was not fun. It was worth the trouble for the branding side of things, but in the past I just gave up on blogs that weren't well-suited to the platforms I used.
Even for computer-savvy folks, it can take a little while to get up to speed on Wordpress, but it's definitely worth the effort.
2 years ago on Should you leave Blogger for WordPress?
Love this concept. Funny and very helpful at the same time!
I noticed the world "should" creating some difficulty in my family within the past year. When I was exhausted and just hanging out with everyone, I would remember something I should have been accomplishing that day. I noticed soon enough that those shoulds created a sense of heaviness in my wife and kids. I was, in effect, saying that I didn't need to be with them, and I was supposed to be somewhere else handling something more important.
That's been a big cure to my shoulds. I either make the time in the early morning / late night, or I realize that the task isn't important enough to stress about. Not that I don't have the temptation to should, but I do my best to avoid it in order not to hurt others.
2 years ago on Are you shoulding all over yourself?
I found two-step authentication to be a pain, but I really should start using it again. For now, I've been switching out passwords on a regular basis for my most important accounts and saving them with 1Password. It's a little difficult to keep up with which password is the current one, but it's been manageable.
2 years ago on Strengthen the Security of your Passwords with Two Step Authentication
That's really a great concept. I love the idea that others can't see the wall that's totally blocking off your own view of what's next. I've totally been stuck behind that wall on a great number of projects.
For me, it comes down to the purpose of what I'm trying to accomplish. If that inner motive is strong enough, then I can fight enough to get around it and continue on. If, however, I've simply extended myself too far, then resistance that I'm not willing to overcome is a cue to back away.
I'm attempting to take more time for worthwhile causes.
2 years, 1 month ago on How to See Your Brick Walls for What They Really Are
2 years, 1 month ago on Does online education really teach us anything?
When first learning how to code a few years back, I tried out all sorts of resources. I settled on a book that had 30 lessons divided up in one-hour increments. It gave snippets of code for readers to manipulate, and then the book would instruct you on how to write code yourself (with answers provided later in the book).
That was the best way for me to learn at the time. Simply trying to read about coding is insanely boring, but getting in there and tinkering as I was going made such a huge difference.
Granted, my first project was hideous, but it was something I had built from nothing. That sense of achievement made the lessons stick much more.
@tammyrenzi Totally agreed. I probably rewrite my titles several times before I finally find one worth using. And even still, I'll use a different title in the heading that I do for the search engines.
Maybe I'm making too many promises!
Great post @remadebyhand !
2 years, 1 month ago on Koi Ponds and Clarity: Three Unconventional Ways to Make Your Writing Clearer
I just came across some of these ideas recently for the first time. I was at a conference where a guy was talking about how much the book Paradox of Choice influenced his software design. The whole idea was that creating an extremely powerful tool with too many choices kept users from engaging its full capacity. Once they cut back on what they offered, the software became much more popular.
2 years, 1 month ago on Hack Your Brain: Combating Decision Fatigue
I used to do a lot more stuff on Facebook for our clients at work, and that was a huge time suck. "All I'm going to do is set up a Like button." Half an hour later, I'm scrambling to complete the assignment.
I'm doing more and more stuff away from those tempting websites, so that's been a big help.
I'm also a big fan of Pomodoro as a way of just focusing on one thing at a time. That one idea has probably been as helpful as any software I've implemented in the past year.
2 years, 1 month ago on Getting back some SelfControl
It seems like a lot of writing on self-employment and writing is focused on how anyone can do it, no matter what. It's refreshing to hear that people would make others consider the entry requirements more strongly.
2 years, 1 month ago on Philip Roth and Elizabeth Gilbert on Self-Employment (Sort of)
I love this video, and it's a great song, too!
When I first started playing in band settings, I realized that I didn't know how to recover from mistakes. I'd mess up something, and then I'd be out for the rest of the song. At home, I started practicing recovering from a screw-up so that I could keep going. It's a skill all on its own that has to be developed.
I love this thought because we can't take chances without making some mistakes. I'd rather be good at recovering than never taking chances.
2 years, 1 month ago on Are there upsides to imperfection?
I think I'd like to group myself in the "only if it's going to be worth it" category sometimes. But even if there was an effective guarantee, our attitudes so drastically affect how we perceive the results. If I'm looking for a guarantee in the first place, am I going to really be able to enjoy the reward?
2 years, 1 month ago on Leap of Faith
I love the idea about hosting your giveaway on Dropbox. It's such a simple idea, but it could make such a huge difference.
I switched over to Mailchimp, and I've been disappointed with their sign-up form options. They do offer a solution where you can use a third-party service to create the form you want, but I haven't messed with it yet. I'll have to try it out.
2 years, 2 months ago on How to set up your freebie the right way
It's amazing how blurry those lines are between content marketing, building a tribe, and running a business for a lot of people. We can so easily lock down in one mode and forget the importance of keeping up with the rest of it. Even bigger businesses are struggling with this same mentality.
Great thoughts here, Shanna!
2 years, 2 months ago on Grokking (And Executing) Business Fundamentals
More than anything else, time is my greatest fuel. As a parent / spouse / professional, I have to be quite intentional about my time. When I do, some spark of creativity will come.
Following your fire analogy here... having too much time isn't all that helpful. It's right back to the "smothering" you talk about in your post. When I sit in front of the screen for too long, I get incredibly distracted, or I start nitpicking. Neither habit helps.
And again, we're back at "balance." (I'm sensing a trend here.)
2 years, 2 months ago on The Care and Feeding of Motivation
I'm not as proficient at keeping my old email sorted as I'd like to be. In the past year, I went through and cleaned out a ton of newsletters and other junk from regularly coming in, so that was at least a big help.
I think I'm going to give these filters a shot!
2 years, 2 months ago on How to deal with messages you want to delete later: Introducing the To Delete label
This is exactly some of the frustration I've felt over the past few years. The world is drastically changing around us, and following advice from long ago on very specific matters seems incredibly limiting. Yes, there are larger truths that make a lot of sense today and yesterday, but following the prescribed lifestyle of our parents' era (house, dog, 2.6 kids) doesn't seem to work as well.
I think I'm trying to cautiously figure out what the path of living adventurously and making a difference in the world while still paying the bills looks like for my family.
2 years, 2 months ago on Seek Not to Follow
I've been fighting to keep my personal to-do list as small as possible so that I can stay flexible enough to keep up with all of the rest of the responsibilities that pile up through the day. As long as I can see that I'm making consistent progress towards something, I can have a lot more patience with the interruptions.
Love the throughput / capacity comparison Shanna and Ethan! That's a great concept.
2 years, 2 months ago on Recent Brilliant Insights
I just came across something this week that might help. Michael Hyatt has a blog structure that he uses on a regular basis, and it really appealed to me. Obviously, you know how to write blog posts, but the structure of this created some interesting guidelines that has me excited to write. It's over at http://michaelhyatt.com/how-to-use-evernote-as-a-blogger.html if you're interested. He talks about using Evernote, but the structure for blog writing makes a lot of sense.
2 years, 2 months ago on At Some Point, You Have to Stop Spinning Your Wheels
I had to think about this one. One thing I stand for is simply considering the other side (actually thinking it through) before taking a strong opinion on a matter. Like in some of the examples you gave here, people consider the alternatives to their actions before making a big decion. Like Denise (and, I'm sure, all of us), I've been around my share of folks who are simply going to think what they think no matter what. No discussion about it.
I try to fully consider the alternative to my actions, and I also try to help people at least consider the other side. It's not that I even want to change people's minds, but I hate how the discussion and understanding between people can completely shut down when it could be avoided.
2 years, 2 months ago on “In Matters of Principle, Stand Like A Rock”
Hey Erin, first off, happy birthday! (I'm loving the 30s WAY more than my 20s. Big time.)
Secondly, a nagging fear of mine is not leaving a legacy behind. I always want to know the "why" behind everything I do, which can be a good thing. There are, however, times when the need to know keeps me from doing what I should. I pray that this year is more about trusting and going forward instead of worrying myself in circles.
2 years, 3 months ago on Birthdays, Fear, and a Book You Should Read
I think the identity that's helped me is being slow to speak when I don't understand or agree with a situation. Rather than charging in and expressing my feelings, I wait to get a better grasp on where someone is coming from before responding. It's been incredibly helpful in meetings and email.
At the same time, I still need to work on being aware of the needs of others to a greater degree. If I'm in a direct conversation, then I can follow with what's happening. When that person isn't right in front of me, I'm not thinking enough about how I can further help that person out. (Too much self-awareness, not enough others-awareness!)
2 years, 3 months ago on How Your Identity Fosters Your Goals
@ethanwaldman It seems like it's one thing to use my user data to better advertise to me. Taking my content for licensing deals is a trend that I really hope does not become popular.
2 years, 3 months ago on How to Set Up Professional Google Email Without Paying for Google Apps
@cjrenzi, Absolutely! I told my wife that I'm making myself wait a month before starting any new ideas. That way, I only work on the stuff that actually matters.
2 years, 3 months ago on The Year I Planned Someone Else's Life
I'm really fighting hard not to overplan this year. It's a struggle that I can completely relate to, and I hope your flexible plans work for you. (When they do, you'll have to share your awesome discoveries.)
As much as I love the whole "business-y" side of life, it's definitely all there is to living. I put too much time in last year and left myself and my family unbalanced as we struggled through.
By the way, I'm really glad to hear that your editing has gone well so far. That's great to hear!
I think my most recent time of moving away from a free service that changed its offerings was Instagram. With the new terms of service, I think I'm going to back away and start relying on Twitter's photo app more. And unfortunately with Instagram, it's not something you can just pay to keep yourself out of the new terms.
I really hadn't thought about how Google had convinced us that email should be free. That's a great point. We get so caught up in what we (think we) deserve that we completely forget that part of the equation.
I fall into the trap of planning. I'll try to see a strategy all the way through in my head and imagine every possible consequence, rendering me useless for hours. Planning is essential. Coming up with a contingency plan for every possibility is just downright excessive.
Thanks for sharing, Vicki!
2 years, 3 months ago on What Living In A Tent For 3 Months Taught Me About Being An Entrepreneur