Slow repetition

I’ve been thinking of going slower, unsynching, and using a minimal approach to technology. For example, I don’t want to have my personal phone connected to my work account other than my calendar. But the challenge is that I really like to see all my calendars in one app.

So I’m stuck, a bit. I’m also building a morning planning and late afternoon reflection habit. Weekly and Monthly ones too. I’ve been doing this off and on for years, but until last week I was off. I started the practice again and it’s been great. I’m transitioning to a new job and this is helping keep everything clear and on track for me.

So, back to the calendar issue. I’ve come up with a plan.

I set up an iCloud calendar for work (referred to as calendarName below). In the afternoon retrospective, I look at my work computer’s calendar, and I use the Drafts iOS app on my phone to list out my upcoming work meetings.

  • Tomorrow 9-930am Team One Standup /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 930-945amTeam Two Standup /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 1-2pm Meeting Name /calendarName
  • Tomorrow 330-4pm Meeting Name /calendarName

I then use the Fantastically Good Event Parser Action in Drafts to auto generate of these calendar events on that specific calendar.

Since the first two events for each day are standardized (they shouldn’t change much) I setup a text expander snippet. I type a short, five character string of gibberish, and it expands to the first two lines above. Why not just put them as repeating calendar events? Because I like the fact that I need to enter them each day, manually. Well, somewhat manually as I am assisted by technology (textExpander) but I’m not in a “set and forget” mode.

After I expand the snippet, I can change the text if there is a variation in the meetings. I then add whatever other meetings there might be before sending this all to my calendar with the Drafts Action.

Maybe I am shaving a yak here, but slowing down, unsyching and semi-automated mindful computing is helping build and reinforce good habits for me.

Chad Moore @cm