Jeremey DuVall is a former personal trainer turned writer and digital publishing guy. He spends his time helping bloggers produce amazing content and contributing to a variety of health and fitness publications. He’s also really great at high fives. He blogs regularly at JeremeyDuvall.com. These are his good things.
Good things to read.
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk. Yes, before there was a movie, there was a book, and in my opinion, it’s much better than the motion picture. Although it can be difficult after having the stage set by Brad Pitt and Edward Norton, try forgetting everything you know about Fight Club and read the book with an open mind. Palahniuk’s writing is unusually entertaining, and the characters will keep you reading page after page. Be sure to read the afterword and find out that many of the events (like peeing in the soup as a waiter) are actually based on real-life events.
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho. This is just a great story from start to finish — plain and simple. Combine the interesting adventure with real life lessons, and you have one hell of a book.
Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. I’ve read all of Gladwell’s books, but this is by far my favorite. Far too often, I think we look at the success of others with contempt and envy. Outliers presents success in a very different light. While you’re reading, go ahead and pick up Tipping Point and Blink; you won’t regret it.
Good things to watch.
New Girl. By the time Tuesday arrives, everyone is usually in need of a great laugh. For my fiancee and I, New Girl provides just that. The situations the characters get themselves into are likely reminiscent of your own life. Plus, everyone knows a real-life Schmidt. Two things I’ve taken away from the show:
- Everyone should play True American at least once in their life.
- The Douchebag Jar needs to be utilized in most places.
This is Water. This commencement speech by David Foster Wallace has gone all kinds of viral. It’s certainly worth 8-9 minutes of your life. After watching, you will view the world through a different lens.
Your Own Presentation. Whether it’s giving a presentation or interviewing for a new job, getting an outsider’s perspective on your presenting style can make a world of difference. I was lucky to have several interviews critiqued when I was starting to apply for jobs. The feedback I was given made a huge difference in my confidence in front of others.
Good things to use.
Noise-Canceling Headphones. I work best when I’m isolated in my own environment. To stay focused and avoid outside distractions, I use a pair of Able Planet headphones. Put those on, and it’s like the entire world disappears around you. Seriously, someone could be screaming right next to me, and I wouldn’t hear it. For those that don’t like working to music, I occasionally use Coffitivity to give me some ambient background noise, or I play something more mellow like Acoustic Alchemy.
A Standing Desk of Some Sort. Coming from a personal training background, I’m used to constantly moving throughout the day. Since I began working at my computer more and more, I had to rely on a standing desk otherwise I would go absolutely crazy. Sitting, in general, isn’t great for your posture. Plus, you’ll likely be more awake and concentrated with a standing desk. Currently, I use a ledge in my apartment when I want to stand, but I’m looking for the ideal standing/sitting combo desk (likely going to build one). If you have to sit all day, invest in a laptop stand and use a wireless keyboard and mouse so you can avoid staring down while you work.
A Timer. Ever wonder how you finish the day with half of your to-do list unchecked? Probably by wasting time on Facebook or browsing the internet. Using a timer can help you best allocate your time and also plan intermittent rest breaks to recharge. I use Timebar because it sits in the menu bar at the top of my screen so I can see how much time I have left before the buzzer. If you find yourself constantly checking out your friend’s pics on Facebook, consider using SelfControl, a free app that both acts as a timer and a buddy that blocks any URL you want (like Facebook.com).
Connect with Jeremey on Twitter, @JeremeyD.