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Yodeller

Welcome to the Yodeller: my ongoing project to try and write something every day. You can read more about the background from here. If you are a new reader you might want to start from the beginning.

Fixated by the title

The title is the first thing that I always write when starting to write a new post. It's the root of every post, defining the topic I'm about to write. After I'm done it not always necessarily suitable title anymore. I might get carried away along the way and end up writing about something completely different.

It's easy to just pick a topic, write it down and start producing text about it. But sometimes it might be hard to come up with that. It can hold me back as I can't get started with the writing, even if I have a perfect idea in my head, but I can't come up with a proper title for it.

Maybe I should for a chance try it the other way around. Just start writing something and see where it leads. And only after I have finished, look back and decide what did I just wrote about. The result might be something completely different. Without fixating my mind in trying to match a certain topic what could I come up with. Or at least seeing the ready text would allow me to put a proper and meaningful title for it. I can't remember doing that ever before. Maybe it's time to try something new again.

Green office

Yesterday my initiative for making our company carbon neutral was accepted by our happiness team. It has probably been one of the most anticipated thing coming up lately. A lot of people have expressed their interest and support in this kind of initiative. And it also aligns well with our companies new strategy.

Unfortunately, unlike most happiness team decisions, this one would need some considerable financial investment so it still needs to be accepted by the leadership. But I'm pretty sure they won't decline it. Or should I say, they can't afford to deny it.

It's nice to be in a situation where making people happy at the workplace is making sure we take care of the environment and are conscious about the impact our work has. It's no longer just free sodas and company events, we have all those and more.

I'm pretty sure we don't stop there either. I, for example have already started talking about the green tech thinking, considering the impact of our actual work on the environment instead of worrying just about our working environments impact. If we can show an example to others in this industry, and why not others as well, we can make a difference.

Cartographers of the mindscape

As writers we are like those making maps, trying to draw a picture of our thoughts and being guides for others in the vast landscape of knowledge (thanks to @haideralmosawi for introducing this metaphor). It is our job to make sure our readers can safely journey through our stories.

It's hard to put your complete thoughts into words. There will always be left those uncharted territories you didn't even realize you didn't know. It might leave some empty spots on the map. But those are up to the reader to fill. In creative writing, this is a good thing. It's good to leave something up to the imagination.

But when writing something factual there shouldn't be any big gaps in your text. It should be as comprehensive as possible. There is no room for interpretation. When you have the concept in your head it might feel like you know it all. But when you write it out you notice those uncharted territories. The places where you need to venture deeper to make your map complete.

It's also intriguing to leave some areas unmapped. Encourage others to start their own exploration at the borders of the knowledge and expand that what is known from there on.

Question everything!

People love to talk about themselves, they like to share what they know. If you just ask them to. 

Questions are a great way to learn. Both to know more about the person you are talking with and the things they know about. It's a good opportunity that shouldn't be missed. Listening to them makes them also value you more as you show appreciation towards them.

The problem is, we love to talk about ourself so much we often forget the other person. We don't ask those questions, we just keep answering the ones they are presenting to us. And we feel good about it.

I find myself way too often in that exact situation. I just keep talking thinking that this is going well. If there is a pause, if they don't ask any more questions... awkward silence. Even when given a chance I don't act. I'll wait for more, or at worst, keep telling about myself instead of being interested in them.

At minimum, I should start using those pauses, any chances they give to bounce the ball back to them. Listen to what they have to say. And maybe someday I can seamlessly divert the conversation back and forth so that both sides can tell enough about themselves.

 

Don't know where to start

Sometimes I get so big topics in my head I don't even where to start unravelling them. Getting it all out at once feels like a huge task, but at the same time, it feels impossible to split it into smaller pieces. Those pieces just don't seem to fit back together. There is too much missing from between them.

Nothing of it seems to make any sense outside of my head. There it's just perfect complete construct, but anything I get out feels incomplete and scattered. Eventually, I might get everything out, but I don't know how to tie it all back together.

Maybe there are those gaps also in my head. I just ignore them, fill them with something blurry to make it feel like it's all seamless. But when I put all those pieces down its apparent that something is missing. My mind can't obscure those missing pieces anymore.

It's dangerous to think you have something complete in your head. You are too good deceiving yourself. Only by taking it all out can you see that what is missing. And start making the whole actually complete. Filling those missing pieces and connecting everything back together. It's not incomplete because you didn't get it all out, it's incomplete because those pieces were never there.

 

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