List life reminders

runner’s creed

hit the wall, fall, rest, recover, get up, break through
desperately yes that is youth is love is life is don’t forget what’s at the bottom
don’t mess everything or, if you have, then minimize damages
push forth the act of pushing forth is hope
hunt the good times they can’t hide forever
run forward and live, win

invisible roads

Each goal defines invisible roads on the rest of the world. Find and travel these roads, depending on the goals you choose.

prefrontal suplex

Sleep and
a valiant spirit revives
my goals are my responsibility and
work smart to support and protect those I love.


walking through the shelves of a library
I look at the books sadly
and with longing.
How unjust!
Lack of time
and lack of intelligence
deny me the pleasure of wisdom.

where we want to be

If this is not the life we wanted,
what can we do today to help us tomorrow?
Teams, agreements, goals, plans, schedules.

exert for freedom

If you are slow, they will drag you. If you can find the energy to run ahead, then you can make your path. If only we remember what we wanted to do when trapped instead of being distracted when free. Have the strength to stay focused and save yourself.

revise goals

Years are passing.
Let us renew
why we are here
what we came to do.

before hunger

Before hunger makes me forget my directions, while I can still see dimly with one eye, let me write a list of what I need to do, and program myself to stick to this list to ensure that I will execute it even when I lose the ability to reprogram myself because my prefrontal cortex has shut down to save energy.

how to contribute

Emergency disconnect. My world is upside down today!
Think, “I have experienced this before.”
Run checklist.
Eat. Did you eat more than four hours ago?
Sleep. Rest your broken body.
Write in journal. Don’t show anyone.
Talk meaningfully with confidante, even a stranger.
Say, “I can do it.”
Say, “I can do it!”
List today’s goals. Be reasonable.
What can we do today to help us tomorrow?
Teamwork starts with taking care of yourself.

health first

health first
live forward

no no no

say no no no
not yes yes yes
so that your loved one doesn’t tell you
even the dog thinks you’re her bitch

being social

Half of being social is taking good care of yourself.


Take good care of yourself so that the world receives what you will give to it.

internal compass

What will I do next? Choose the action that will bring the most worth to the most number of people important to you. The worth of an action is how much benefit it brings to a person, summed over all people and weighted by the importance of each person to you.

take action

As long as you are alive, you can take action.

a woman needs to feel safe

A passenger can sit comfortably if she trusts the ability of the driver.
She might overtake the steering wheel in an emergency, but does not like to do this all the time.
It is not enough for the driver to behave as though he knows what he is doing, for the passenger can sense whether they are headed in the right direction.
A person becomes a better driver through experience.
Experienced drivers easily gain the trust of their passengers.

active optimism

If love is about negotiating a way to fulfill both people’s needs, then maybe friendship is about sharing experiences and showing interest in the lives of others. It is natural to lose connection with people, no matter how close was the bond. Replenishing and cultivating your garden of friends are lifelong activities. Remind yourself that it is worth the effort and that it is never too late as long as you are alive. Think good thoughts about others. Work with what you have, even if it is imperfect. Moving forward does not mean you have to start over.

make your own options

If you ask a taxi driver at the airport how to get to the city, he will tell you there are no buses.

share what I have learned

Each day, I would like to learn and share what I have learned, in a way that other people can use.

save the future

Only you will care as much about your children to teach them the skills you believe are necessary to thrive.

guard your time

You are the guardian of your own time. Choose how you spend it. Don’t let others control your time. Don’t trust others to spend your time in a way that is meaningful to you.


How does a person, group or country submit to the will of another?
Do the friendly lose?
Do the aggressive win?


Start with something simple but complete
Improve it

beware loyalty

Beware loyalty to a person rather than a cause.
Being too loyal makes it easy for others to take advantage of you.

how to choose a path

Before embarking on a long and arduous project, it is practical to imagine exactly what story you want to be able to tell upon its successful completion.

be supportive

Being less critical of myself made me feel better.

desires and limits

Communicate clearly our desires and limits so that we don’t regret actions that we take or do not take.

work socially

It is important to work with and in the company of other people.

life allocation

Life is too short to spend on people with whom you don’t see a future.

human potential

Social classes waste human potential.


The world is not my enemy nor is it my caretaker.
Even friends do not necessarily look out for my best interests.

no illusions

I have no illusions;
Hard work is ahead,
but I will make it rewarding
for those with whom I work and
for those I love.

the next step

For each goal, decide the next step.

lifetime value of a product

A good enough product released early and used often has more
lifetime value than a perfect product released too late.

pass on the reins

It is also your responsibility to ensure that the next generation
can continue and improve the work that you have done.

be decisive

Decide how you will spend your time or others will decide for you.
Planning helps you say no.

your calling

Finish it today because there might not be time tomorrow.
Make time.

get buy-in

Win support from stakeholders before making risky decisions.

prioritize your needs

Just because a request comes from someone else does not mean that
it is more urgent than your own request to yourself.


Choice is one Yes and many No’s.

ask for help

Communication is a circulation system for information.
Ask for help, because something hard for you might be easy for someone else.

practice what you want to do

Practice a positive behavior to replace a negative behavior.

what if other people take advantage of you

He or she who gives something that the other person values also has the power to enforce limits and expectations under which he or she will continue to give.

infrastructure reconstruction

Use success from small projects to win support for large projects.

segment your audience

Segment your audience into groups and
address each group separately
depending on their respective interests.

relationship as negotiated agreement

A relationship is an agreement between two parties on what you will do for me in exchange for what I do for you, with boundaries on which activities and information can be shared with other parties and which activities and information must be exclusive for the agreement to hold. Givers try to negotiate by offering more costs. Takers try to negotiate by demanding more benefits.

who is responsible for fulfilling my needs

I am responsible for fulfilling my own needs.
Other people can fulfill my needs.
Expand my support network to cover the full spectrum of my needs.
Negotiate to get more.

influence through words

The challenge is to make other people feel healthy, loved and wanted through words and not just actions.


Focus on opportunity instead of loss.
Get what you want and don’t get what you don’t want.

be your own cheerleader

What’s good?
What’s better?
What’s next?

go forth and multiply

Constantly involve other people in my work.
Ask for advice.
Match people according to what they are interested in doing.
Form committees, meet regularly, make each contributor feel valued.
Show impact.

everyone is a customer

Be strong and steady even when the customer is upset.
Stay focused on improving the customer relationship.
Give one compliment a day to generate positivity.

involve other people in your work

Relationships are habits. You can change your habits on whom you reach out to for help. Make direct requests to specific people with clearly defined tasks.

reach life goals

When overwhelmed with work, I might schedule too much for one day in the wishful hope that I will magically get it all done. This is a false and unfair promise. It is not how much I get done, but whether I am doing what is essential toward a long-term goal.
If I reach only one goal today, which one will take me closest to where I want to be?
Ask people to do specific tasks.
Describe a ten-minute mission and cross it out when done.

minimize damages

Don’t miss new chances because you are regretting old chances.

give feedback privately

Rebuking people publicly causes resentment.
Emotion blocks the message we’re trying to send.
Give feedback one on one.
What is the change you would like to see?

win supporters

Identify stakeholders who can greatly impact the outcome of your project but who are not actively supportive of it. Strategize how to make influential stakeholders more supportive.

motivate units

Ask the team member to propose a solution.
People are more motivated if they have control over the solution.

clarify and confirm

Summarize what you learned after asking questions about the customer’s challenge, vision, stakeholders and constraints to confirm that you understand their situation.

compare tradeoffs

Compare tradeoffs before acting.
Consult when priorities change.

value your life

Don’t waste your life doing something if your heart is not in it.


Involve others in our work.
Choose only work aligned with our life mission.
Choose only work that directly advances our business.
The real work is in building collaborative relationships.

what if

Trying and missing is better than not trying and wondering what if.

scientific method

Every day is a new chance to experiment.

for the long term

The real way to keep her for the long term is to be successful.
The real way to be successful is to be passionate about what I do and not compromise my life mission for short-term gain.

little decision makers

In order to become good decision makers, children must practice making their own decisions and experience the consequences.

for dimples

Was upset for a while, but realized that, on the bright side, I’m glad that I had the balls to ask, instead of wondering what if, like so many missed opportunities. Thus, I forgive you and I’m grateful for the shared memories.

perfectionism is lethal

People will not wait for your work to be perfect.
Have the courage to act even if the details are incomplete.

paths vs goals

Reminding yourself of a path that needs work is more effective than criticizing yourself on a goal.
The secret to staying focused is to take breaks.

passion vs dedication

Would you stay in a job that makes you unhappy? I was in a serious relationship for over seven years and stayed with several employers for much longer than necessary. I thought dedication was more important. I have since left these toxic relationships and am leading a much happier life. From experience, I can emphatically say that passion is key to success in any endeavor.

female attraction

attraction is not a decision but an emotion
women are attracted to masculine behavior
confidently take risks
be direct in the approach

get what you want

Planning increases odds that you will get what you want.

do your best

What can I do to help?
You help the family by doing your best.
Your friends get stronger when you get stronger.
Your responsibility is to survive and take care of yourself.
That is how you show love to me.

plan to get what you want

If I don’t plan and make clear to myself my own goals and what I want,
then I end up following what other people want, which leads to resentment.
Plan to prepare myself to get what I want.
Stay true to what you want to do.

ask myself

Instead of telling myself what to do, ask what I feel like doing and do that instead.
If I keep getting distracted, then my brain and body are trying to tell me something.
Write in my notebook, “What would I like to do now?”
After writing three options, circle one and do it.
Draw a line through the completed task and ask yourself the question again.
Asking questions restores control.
Listing options prevents impulsiveness.

consult the locals

Before getting in a taxi, ask nearby locals how much the trip will cost.
If there is no meter, settle the trip cost with the driver beforehand.


With distance, comes distance.

live meaningfully

It is my responsibility to realize my own goals.
Work a few hours each day on what is most important for me.

gift of choice

What a gift, to start afresh tomorrow.
What a gift, to continue from yesterday.
What a gift, to choose today.

right for me

Going against the wishes of those close to you is sad
but I know I must stick to what feels right for me
or else I’ll only live half-assed
dragging my feet.

how to get unstuck

Write a baby step.
Promise a reward.


Maybe the key to progress is not goals but habits.
Habits are what enable you to reach your goals.

assert and defend

If I decide that a request is not in my best interest, then I need to say no firmly and stick to it, regardless of what the other person says or does or how many times the person asks.
If the other person proceeds to do what is not in my best interest, then I need to respond and act strongly to respect and defend what is important to me.
It is foolish to give in, sacrifice what I want and then seethe afterwards. If I change my mind and say yes, then I need to take full responsibility for the consequences.
Other people have the right to ask me anything, no matter how ridiculous or harmful to myself, but it is my responsibility to protect myself and what is important to me.

unequal pricing

When a taxi attendant asks you questions about
where you are from,
where you are going,
when is your flight,
he is trying to decide how much to charge you.

time cushion

A generous time cushion is important when events are unpredictable and uncontrollable.
With more time, there are more options; you can negotiate and relax.
Being relaxed is good for your health.

keep your family and business completely separated

Friends do not necessarily make good business partners.

socratic method

What do you like to do?
What are you good at?
Is there someone who might enjoy doing the work that you dislike?
How would you define success for this project?

smaller tasks

The less I can concentrate, the smaller my tasks must be.

while I can

Time passes. You might be here, but so far away. And I feel guilty for not having kept my promises, even to myself. When will I reach my goals? Why do I often lose focus? Please forgive me, but I will do better today bit by bit while I can.

punctual progress

As long as I’m closer and closer to being on time with my promises, there is progress.


Maybe deadlines are the key to progress.

order of operations

Don’t give me that nonsense about being too busy for your own health.
Cultivate mind and body, do work that is fulfilling, find a way to make a living from it, seek a mate, build a family, in that order.

secret to finishing

By continually starting where you stopped, you will eventually finish.

aura of invincibility

Spiritually weak means you keep finding yourself in a recurring nightmare situation.
Spiritually strong means that you are able to steer your life in the direction you want.

Those who are spiritually weak are easy to hurt, insult and manipulate and they do this to themselves; they trip themselves.
Those who are spiritually strong are unshakable and radiate strength to others.

The very spiritually strong have an aura of invincibility.

start start start start start start start

Repeatedly try to stop destructive tasks by starting restorative tasks.
Repeatedly try to start productive tasks.
Keep setting the countdown timer for repeated attempts.

opportunities now

The truth is, there is no way for me to know whether things would have turned out better if I had taken a different path. The only thing to do is to take advantage of the opportunities that I have now.
What do I really want?
What are the opportunities that I have now?
What can I do today to help myself tomorrow?


Scope and time frame define a project. If the scope changes, then it is a different project.

builder’s morale

The key to getting the most creativity and productivity out of your builders is to motivate them with what the user needs rather than exert more control. Anything that decreases a builder’s motivation or morale will hurt the long-term health of a project.


Nothing shared is ever private.

let people speak for themselves

Instead of stating, “I don’t think she knows about XYZ.”
Ask, “Do you know about XYZ?”

rest to live

It is important to be well rested to make good decisions.

mission alignment

She left because we didn’t give her a chance to contribute in a way that was aligned with her dream goals.

notes for team leaders

Focus on results and the user’s perspective; you do not need to know exactly how it works.
Schedule a demo once every two weeks. The demo does not have to be fancy; even a command-line script is sufficient. Pay attention and provide positive feedback during demos to motivate and boost engineer morale. A safe and supportive environment is important. Avoid criticizing what is wrong as this causes people to blame each other; instead, focus on next steps and what you would like to see for the next demo.
Avoid raising emergencies as this can be toxic to team morale and lead to burnout; cost is two weeks of unproductive recovery time for every week of high stress, or worse, loss of a valuable team member.
Empower a trusted senior engineer to enforce code quality.
Take time to learn the dream goals of each team member, then give a choice of missions that align with their dream goals.

rest to work

The lesson that I keep forgetting is that working while exhausted is not a good use of time. If I am staring at the computer struggling to remember what I am trying to do, then make a small plan and go to sleep.


A microplan defines microtasks that can each be completed under five minutes. Spending fifteen minutes in drafting a microplan for how I will spend the next thirty minutes results in much more focused execution. This is how I will combat the situation of being dazed and easily distracted.


Making promises is easier than keeping them.
Be careful when making promises.
Be careful when trusting people who make promises.

fire starter

Starting work each day is like trying to start a fire. Sometimes the tinder is wet and it takes a long time for the fire to catch. Food is fuel.

live together

Every day spent without you is a missed connection. Life is meant to be lived together.

collaboration primer based on the explosive child

Instead of being authoritarian and forcing the person to do what I want,
Instead of being hands off and letting the person do whatever the person wants,
Repeat the person’s concern to the person,
Explain my concern,
Invite the person to brainstorm solutions that work for the group.
How can we solve this problem?
Actions show which people and projects I am prioritizing.
Respect the time of participants in a meeting by being prepared.
Respect contributors by commenting instead of erasing or editing directly.
Allocate time each day for communication because feedback can boost morale.

rules of conduct

Avoid telling people what to do.
Ask each other questions about their long-term and short-term goals.
Propose your plan using the mission template for what you want to do.
Present your plan at the next team meeting.
Execute your plan if the team approves it.
Respect each other’s health and work life balance.
Remind each other if they forget any of these rules of conduct.


Success means making a living fulfilling a meaningful mission.

choosing goals

Put on your plate only what you can finish.

lead by asking

Instead of answering, lead by asking.
Give positive feedback.

obey the clock

Exercise at six, eat at seven.
Exercise at twelve, eat at one.
Exercise at six, eat at seven.
Turn off electronics at ten, sleep at eleven.
For brains that get stuck, obey the clock, obey the timer.
Set a time for when you will wake from the dream or nightmare.
Obey the clock, obey the timer.

happy memory

Today was a special day. It is one of those days that I will remember when times are difficult or sad. Thanks for making this memory.

time allocation

If I don’t allocate time to do something, then it is logical I won’t make much progress in it.

productivity recipe

Sleep well
Eat meals
Exercise regularly
Specify tasks
Set alarms

training leaders

A good leader shows people how to come to their own conclusions.

realistic goals

My hypothesis is that if I get better at setting realistic goals, then I will get better at finishing tasks on time.

on teaching

Have your students fix their own mistakes.

on eating

Sometimes you eat not because you want to, but because it will give you energy for what you have to do.