I know I am not the only one with this problem. There's something I would like to do, that I have the means to do but for some reason I just can't seem to get it done. I've been trying to finish an album for probably over six years now. I've also been needing to finish up a printable resume and take photos and create better graphics for my website. I have numerous recording and music projects to work on and finish up. I have everything I need - and more - to accomplish everything I want, and need to do.

So what's stopping me?

I hear myself complaining a lot about not being able to get stuff done at home. I don't think that is uncommon. There can be many distractions and sometimes the mind just needs a place set aside for just work. I started going to the new public library downtown and worked on writing blog posts and finishing up websites. I found I could be fairly productive there. Unfortunately, that didn't solve all of my problems.

For many of my projects, I really needed to be able to use my own computer, with my software and files. Not everything is cloud-compatible (yet, at least). My solution to this was, obviously I need a MacBook Pro. There really are quite a few legitimate reasons to have one in the house. However, spending two-grand right now isn't the wisest move. The reality is that I have what I need to do my work.

My next complaint was that the computer was set up in such a way that it was uncomfortable to use. I have always struggled with desk height, chairs and monitor position. As much as I would love to have the need to set up my room in the house as a recording studio, that's not really what most of my work now requires. I had everything set up around my mixing board. The computer keyboard was on a tray underneath the mixing desk, and the monitor was on a mount hovering above the board. This would be a great set up if I were to be making a lot of mixes on my board. However, I wasn't, and never really have. It mostly gets used as a bunch of recording channels, not an actual mixer - so there was really no need for it to be the item that was front and center. Plus, it recently developed some noise and needs to be taken apart and cleaned.

So I gave in. My focus now has to be on a useful, comfortable set up to use the computer for the projects I've working on now. The mixer is out of the room, waiting for repair. The keyboard is no longer hidden under the table where it's uncomfortable to type and difficult to see. With the keyboard up top, I no longer need the keyboard tray and can remove it to have more clearance under the desk. The monitor can now be in a lower position with a more comfortable viewing angle. I no longer have to turn on all of my recording equipment just to have my speakers on, my Apogee Duet is on the desk for easy control of the volume and for using headphones. My MIDI keyboard is up on the desk, ready to go, as well.

Maybe most importantly, I now have some table top workspace. I can have printed sheet music laying out, write down notes and have a place to rest my arms. While the re-imagining of my workspace it's entirely completed yet, this is a major first step and took care of some of my major hurdles. I have found that most of the reasons I complain about that are keeping me from being productive, are barriers that I could simply step around. Now if I could just get that dog to understand that just because I'm home doesn't mean it's play time!

So what's stopping you?
What are you hurdles and barriers?
What can you do to overcome them?
My newly cleared off and now functioning workspace.
Leading up to my 30th birthday, my main goal was to cut out eating fast food and drinking unhealthy beverages. I had also wanted to loose some weight. My wife had some success with the ten week challenge at Farrell's Extreme Body-shaping. Not only was it providing a good, balanced workout, but they also put a huge emphasis on nutrition. I eventually decided to sign up and give it a shot. While I did not hit my weight goal for my birthday, I did however manage to stop eating fast food and drinking soda and sugary juices. Along with that, I was stronger than I have ever been and generally had more energy. My body just felt like it was running better.

At the beginning of August, about one month prior to my 30th birthday, I received the news that I would no longer have a job after the end of the month. It was a job that I really enjoyed and a great direction for my desired career path (which is somewhat lucrative, at least in the area). The job actually fit very well into my life, and would have been a great situation for when my wife and I start a family. Although it was difficult to go into work everyday knowing it would soon be my last, I was grateful for having the time to prepare for new employment (more on this later).

I have long held the belief that it will become progressively harder to make changes to my lifestyle and habits after I turn 30. I'm not sure where it came from, or of it's truthfulness. However, I figure it can be used to my advantage. Plus, now that I have hit that milestone and along with it becoming unemployed for the first time since high school, I figure now is the time to work on some changes.

So naturally, my first step is to make a list. 
  • Speak more confidently and assertively
  • Consume and waste less
  • Eat and live healthier
  • Complete more projects I start

Step two is to make a plan.

For the past couple of years, I have been collecting information about how other people have learned to be more productive and work towards their goals. The intent was to be able to get myself better organized to hopefully make a living by doing freelance work or running my own business (also more on this later). However, I feel like much of these ideas I have collected can be applied to achieving any goals. Over the coming weeks, I will lay out my plans and start to share some of the information I will be using to help myself be successful. So stay tuned, and hopefully we can all share some helpful ideas and learn to be better, more producti