Week ending 10/2/2022

:rocket: Another week, another big step forward in my migration into Fibery. This week I got all my tasks moved over from Amazing Marvin and started doing task management full-time in Fibery. So far it’s at least as good as AM in most respects, and certainly better in some as well. Over time I think it will only get better as I take more advantage of Fibery’s functionality and get more of my data into it. So now I have tasks/projects + my daily logging and weekly review practices. These are the heart of my day-to-day interaction with tools like Obsidian and Amazing Marvin. For the most part I can now leave both of those behind and have everything in one place! :champagne:

The biggest missing piece now is some way to bulk migrate markdown docs into Fibery. If I could get the markdown content into a CSV (i.e. a column in a CSV with the full markdown contents of a .md file), that would totally work. But I don’t know how to easily get all my .md files into a single .csv. Any ideas? Let me know!

:camera: One of my biggest challenges as a photographer is perfectionism. Not while I’m out taking the shot, but rather, when I’m back home, in front of my computer, and sorting through 100s or even 1000s of shots from an outing, trying to pick the best ones (modern camera burst rates can make this even harder with 10s of extremely similar shots), and then process the best ones well enough to publish. The problem is essentially self-made, in my head: I don’t want to miss any good photos, and I want the photos I do include to look as good as they possibly can. But all too often this results in me either taking ages and ages to finally publish photos I took (I still haven’t shared all of my 2019 road trip pics for example!), and in some cases this is really a bummer, like my friend’s birthday shots (some of which I think are great!) that I haven’t finished and send to him for some 6 months now. :disappointed:

Anyway, this week I tried an experiment. After a nice, long hike and some close-up wildlife photo opportunities at Pt Reyes, I took 30 minutes or so to just skim through them, pick a few “good enough”-looking ones, processed them fairly quickly, and then just exported and started sharing them. This is very unusual for me, but unsurprisingly it felt great and worked well! I was able to send some to my friend who I’d gone hiking with, my mom, and share to Instagram, all with about 30 mins of work. It will take me a while I’m sure to actually go back through and see if there are more and better shots, but the ones I picked were worth sharing regardless. And if I hadn’t taken this approach, they might never have been shared. I still want to be able to post a larger selection of the best shots from each outing, but I also want to continue practicing this more quick pass, so I can at least be sure that some highlights from the moment are shareable without too much time and effort. The Instagram set is the same as I shared here last week, but if you’re not following me on Instagram, here’s an opportunity to start. :wink: (boo to Instagram not “oneboxing” properly here in Discourse)


:grimacing: For the first time since the pandemic began, I had a near-miss with COVID. I got word from a friend that someone who was at a very small, unmasked, indoor gathering we’d had tested positive a couple days later! I’m pretty cautious overall, and I knew it was a calculated risk, one I’ve taken dozens of times since this all began. I’m glad it worked out OK once again, but it’s an important reminder that the risk is always there. Fortunately I also recently got my bivalent booster, so I can probably count on any case I might end up with being a mild one. It’s long COVID that I’m much more concerned with…

:couch_and_lamp: More progress on decorating my bar/living room space. The new accent chair has been nice to have, but something was a bit off. A friend took a look and felt like the division between the entryway and the main space wasn’t clear enough, and I spent a while thinking of how I could work that out. In the end a surprisingly simple tweak got me a good part of the way there: instead of having my shoe rack against the wall, I put it perpendicular, and it basically creates a sort of divide. It’s an open rack so the shoes are all visible and it doesn’t really work aesthetically, but it at least shows how I can probably solve this problem fairly easily. So my next plan is to probably get some kind of enclosed and more aesthetic shoe rack. As a bonus I’ll now have room for a small coat rack for guests as well, which is something I have wanted for a long time! It’s amazing how sometimes a really small change can turn out to be the key to making everything else work…

:bug: Well, I thought I’d raised my last swallowtail caterpillar for the season, but I found a bunch of new eggs on one of my regular walks, and I feel pretty confident they wouldn’t survive in the wild. So I brought them home and several have subsequently hatched. It looks like I’ll end up with 4-5 of them, which will all likely overwinter and hopefully emerge next spring! (quite a few from my last-year batch did this successfully this year) More photos to come, probably.

:stopwatch::thinking: I started experimenting with the Pomodoro Technique this past week, just a bit. I’ve been curious about it for a long time, but never really gave it a proper try. It’s interesting, I find it useful in the sense that it helps me start something, but ultimately I found it far too rigid. I need to try it more to be sure, but most often I found that when the 25 min timer was up, I was “in the groove” and wanted to just keep working. That is probably a good thing in large part, and so in part I started just thinking about what I could take from the practice that would still be valuable, without having to stick to some set cadence of work. I think the most useful thing was just (seemingly) making it easier to start working on something, though I don’t know whether that would continue to be the case after the novelty of the approach is gone and it’s just routine. I also appreciated the reminder to take breaks, even though I didn’t do so. I think those are my two big take-aways, and I’ll try to work on ways of consistently incorporating that value, but in a more flexible way.

:relieved: After more than a month of avoiding it, I finally put some focus into fleshing out the OpenCollective profile and donation page for my Discourse plugin idea of a Graph or network view for navigating connections between topics. It only took a few hours and I was able to get it looking pretty decent, I think. Once I finished I shared it here, on Discourse Meta, as well as on Twitter, etc. No major traction yet, but that’s to be expected, and I intend to keep trying to build some interest over time. In particular I’d like to attract development partners, and there is some (modest, but real) funding available. So if you’re a Ruby dev and interested in hacking on a Discourse plugin let me know!

:brain: My IFS therapy work continues, and I am try to continue evolving and deepening it over time. One of the things I’ve experimented with recently is “self-IFS” work, where I basically try to “check-in” with my parts, get to know some better, maybe talk through/work through something among my parts, etc. It has been interesting and useful so far. Something else that came up recently in therapy was the new-to-me information that most people doing IFS work generally have their eyes closed when doing so-called “In-sight”, connecting with their own parts, etc. Until recently I hadn’t been doing that, whether in guided sessions with my therapist, or my own individual ones. So having learned that, this week I experimented with an eyes-closed self-IFS session. Oddly it seemed to somehow feel perhaps less “connected” and mindful, it felt perhaps like I had less awareness of and connection to my parts and got less insight. It’s just a sample size of one, so may not mean anything, but I found it interesting. I theorized that perhaps eyes closed is not as useful when alone because there’s no need to try to reduce external distraction, fear of judgment from others, etc. without the presence of a therapist (no matter how trusted), but that’s just an idea. More experimentation needed.

I also started an interesting conversation with my therapist this week, after reflecting on our relationship to-date (some 9 months now I think?), and realizing that I still don’t feel as “connected” to and perhaps “seen” by her as I did my previous therapist. There are all kinds of factors and reasons that may be the case, including that I have yet to meet her in-person due to COVID! Unfortunately it seems she plans to continue only seeing clients through video chat, and I’m not sure I want that long-term, but it also brought up some very interesting considerations of what is actually important in a therapist-client relationship, whether having a “close” relationship is important (certainly feeling safe is critical, but that’s not the same thing). In my last therapist relationship I felt “seen”, validated, and valued in a way that I don’t with this one (at least not yet). But is that necessary or even at least valuable for therapy? I’m not sure yet. But it was really nice to be able to have this conversation with my therapist, and I think it will be ongoing, especially as I consider whether I want ultimately to be able to meet in-person with my therapist, which could obviously have a big impact on our work together.

:school_satchel::hiking_boot: I’ve been trying to arrange a backpacking trip with an old friend for a while now, and after some false starts and lost hopes, it finally got turned into a real plan this past week! In the end it’s a rather less ambitious plan than I had been thinking of, but it makes a good deal more sense for the circumstances. And while I’d love to be able to do something longer, I think this is probably the right way to ease back into this, for both of us. He has been backpacking a number of times in the past few years, but got altitude sickness the last time he went in this area. I, meanwhile, haven’t been backpacking at all for 10+ years! I’m in decent hiking shape though, so hopefully this will go well.

I also want to just mention how easy it is to get caught up in a particular idea of a plan, without necessarily getting clear that the needs of everyone involved are being met, including yourself! (or rather, myself :smile:) Starting small is a great way to start, so this is just a reminder to myself, and maybe to you as well, that ambition is best in balance with other factors, and as much as it can be challenging to get on the same page sometimes (in this case we have been largely communicating with intermittent emails!), it’s worth trying to be really clear where possible.