(UPDATE: After mulling over the interview with Tiago Forte [see below], I think what was most valuable and interesting is the idea of fusing work and personal growth. Forte wants to see many many more knowledge workers doing creative work. Productivity (which is a huge buzzword, just google it!) can be a wonderful vehicle for personal growth. Why keep the two separate? They both involve improvement and the desire to improve, but Forte hopes [and is creating tools such as Building a Second Brain for this purpose] that, with some thought, planning and re-orientation, technology can take much of the drudgery out of “productivity” leaving workers a little freer to use all that time and effort and attention and squirreling away of millions of bits of data to actually do creative, interesting and valuable work, both for themselves and for others.

Forte has inspired me to record some of my mini-lectures, as I use them over and over. Why re-invent the wheel every year or semester? And the more I think about it, the more activities occur to me that I can record and use as templates for the future, as well as for others.

PS Building a Second Brain workshop is now accepting applications for its next session in April 2020. Sign up here.

How about you? How can you do more with less? Make things easier for your future self?

The original show-notes with time-stamps can be found here: Video  Interview: Eclectic Spacewalk with Tiago Forte

and the transcript of the entire interview on Medium here: Conversation #3 – Tiago Forte (Transcript).

Up next: I’ll summarize and comment on Tiago Forte’s critical look at Evernote and tagging. OK. Back to the scheduled programming.)

A Manifesto for Human-centered Work. In the second half of the interview I blogged about earlier, Building a Second Brain founder Tiago Forte talks about his vision of work which is both enlightened and enlightening, a vision he calls a Manifesto for Human-centred Work.

  • why you need a second brain is to offload or outsource as many of the mundane and repetitive yet necessary chores involved in knowledge-work as possible to automation, so that people can enjoy life, including and perhaps especially their work. Because 70-80% of what knowledge workers do can be done by computers.
  • I believe in work, that it can be a vehicle for personal growth… and that it can and should be intensely enjoyable.
  • Productivity is an excellent sandbox for life.
  • The solution is to fuse work and personal growth. Personal growth is often separate from work: it’s a retreat, usually expensive, sometimes company-organized, but not everyone has the time or money to afford these, effective though many of them are.
  • Your self knows what it needs. During his first meditation retreat, Forte was shocked to discover new ideas popping out of his imagination without input: no reading, no Internet; all he was doing was sitting on a cushion for 10 hours a day! “I’m supposed to learn something? But where’s it coming from? No-one is teaching me!” Alone with himself. Actually, a more accurate summary of this point might be, you have what you need already inside of you.
  • “At some level I have everything I need. I just need to stop getting in the way.”
  • If you have time, the whole interview (1 hr 20 minutes) is worth watching, particularly if you’re new to Tiago Forte’s ideas. I came away with a much better understanding of what Forte is aiming for and what underpins his Building a Second Brain concept.