What’s your “Out of Office” say?

20-kai-ala
A few weeks ago I went on a vacation to Maui. And like every time I visit Maui it was truly beautiful and wonderful. So much so that I found my house but now need to figure out how to purchase it. In my absence from “the day job” I needed to setup an Out of Office alert as a courtesy to those who emailed me looking for me to do some work (like that would happen on vacation). Well it actually did with an early morning text message, but that’s a different story.

I was tired and bored of the “normal” Out of Office notifications and wanted to customize mine a bit. So here’s what I sent out.

Hey, you emailed me?

I’m currently Out of Office until Wednesday, April 22 soaking up the sun, sand, surf and golf on the island of Maui in the Pacific. Essentially I will have no access to email and phone. So for all matter related to WestJet Vacations, please don’t hesitate to contact Sean McXXXXXXXXX at smcXXXXX@XXXXXXXX.com or 403-5XX-XXXX…he’s looking forward to helping you out with your problem. Of course, he’s not a trained psychologist so you may not want to entirely take his advice or attempted prescribed cures.

If you don’t take his suggestions, then you might as well take a vacation to cure your woes. Check out the newly designed WestJet Vacations website at http://content.westjetvacations.com/main.php and let us know what you think. I spent way too much time working on it in lots of meetings, focus groups and of course my mind. That’s really why I need to go on vacation. My mind has already left, so now I’m trying to go find it. Did I mention I’m going to Maui? Enjoy your time without me and I’ll reply to any outstanding (but not mediocre) emails upon my return.

Aloha!

Marshall

So that simple message got me thinking. Surely there are some GREAT Out of Office alerts floating around this thing we call the internet. I’m curious to know the content (and a little context) of some great messages you’ve received. Please leave them here.

1 Comment | Filed under Life, Pointless Thoughts

Thought vs. Action

Fork in the RoadThere are many forks in the road as one travels through life. I for one am continually identifying them. There are also plenty of distractions along the way. New projects. New ideas. New clients. Old clients. The ever longing quest for money, freedom, time or whatever it is that drives the individual. For me, right now, I’m at a place where I need to take action.

As the saying goes “talk is cheap.” So is thought honestly. Without action, there’s really nothing. So for me now I need to take action and stay focused. That’s where the challenge comes in. In addition to holding a full-time, 40 hour a week job doing web design & development I also do my own gig outside that time and have a desire/need to be the best father I can be to an amazing baby girl. Toss in trying to be a respectable, decent partner and then add a dose of sleep! That really leaves me with very little time to work on the numerous ideas that are already in my head, let alone the ideas that seem to enter every day.

So what am I to do? It’s a matter of maximizing my time, efficiency and remaining focused. There’s being focused again. That’s where I’m at and know I need to take action so I can progress through the current fork in my road. I have a burning desire to break free from the current “9-5 boredom” while being underpaid and under-appreciated for the work I do. I’m confident that I have some multi-million dollar ideas in my head and those who I’ve shared them with see possibility as well. A few days ago on Twitter I slapped up a nice little tweet that really shows a little thinking outside the box. (If you’re trying to figure out the annual salary, just multiply it by 7).

That’s it, that’s all. At just a mere 10¢/second I can easily retire by the time I’m 32. A goal I’ve had for a few years. It’s so close I can taste it, but I need that focus. I need to focus on the four projects currently in progress…not to mention the others bouncing around. Heck, I even had one this morning while making breakfast. There’s no shortage of ideas.

I guess what I need to know is how do you remain focused? What techniques do you use to focus and how are you motivated to do “work for free” that ideally puts a LOT OF COIN in your pocket in the future? I need your help to keep me focused. You can seriously contribute to my success without financial expense or investment…just take a few minutes to leave a well, thought out comment. Please.

No Comments | Filed under Code Development, Life

You’re in control

Seriously, you’re in control! Well, sort of. I found myself downloading a tiny little, inexpensive app for my iPhone while vacationing in Maui. I saw my buddy playing it from across the room and thought it was a golf game so asked what it was. Well, as it turned out, it was a game called Flight Control available for just $0.99 (for a limited time of course).

The game itself is quite simple. You are in charge of ATC (air traffic control) for a rather tiny airport. Two runways and a helipad to be precise. So far, I’ve only seen four types of aircraft landing at it, but I’m wondering if there are in fact more. The play is even easier then the display. Drag your finger to plot the route for the aircraft to the appropriate landing location. Of course, the objective is to safely land as many aircraft as possible. A crash, and well it’s game over.

A high-score of 98 planes landed safely.

A high-score of 98 planes landed safely.

I’m quite happy that I waited until my last day to download it. I managed to kill my battery within the first couple of hours of the long flight back home. Though I did manage a high-score of 98. Just two more away from the century mark. There’s no doubt that the guys at Firemint are a company to watch. They’ve got some other great looking games coming out soon.

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If you’re lazy and you know it clap your hands

OK, I know I still owe a lot of writing to this blog, and to it’s readers, so here we go. I’ve been busy. Well, actually I haven’t. I’ve been slacking a lot at work, and at home, and at my own business. I need to get that drive and passion back. I want to sit back, relax and enjoy life, but realize I need to invest some time into it first.I guess it’s really the time investment that I should look at, and how I divide my time. I’d like to say “there’s not enough time left in the day” but in all reality, I often have too much, and get bored and don’t want to do things.

I have an ever expanding list of things to do, which include some of the following:

  • NECCS website — follow-up on the proposal, and hopefully complete the contract.
  • NECCS marketing proposal — we’ve got some ideas, now we just need to put them on paper.
  • WOLF website — contact the owners to get final payment, or take down the website; a task I never like doing.
  • Blue Rock Landscaping website — we’ve got some mocks sent to them, now we just need their approval, then we get to build the site.
  • Happy in Rush-Hour cover, website, marketing & more — yes, we have to get that done for Leanne so that she can launch her book and sell it to the world.
  • **** website & concept — I can’t divulge the information of the project, but I can definitely make some money at it, and I’ve had the idea for a bunch of years. Time to just do it!
  • Louisbonline.com website — I need to get in contact again with Louis B and get together so that we can get the movie & theatre review site going.
  • Idoloutlook.com website — some general maintenance, tweaks & enhancements. Think I still owe Lite 96 a banner for the logo as well.
  • U of C Women’s Dinos Hockey website – get it done already!
  • And more… – I know that I’ve got more, and I’m forgetting a bunch of them. This always happens to me without my task board. Time to make an online one.

So, as you can see I have a number of projects on the go. On top of that I want to have a life, spend some time with my dogs, my girlfriend that I love, my brother and my friends — of course, not necessarily in the order that they appear. I’ve already got 33+ hours banked at work. I figure once I hit the 160 mark (which at this rate won’t take too long), then I’ll be able to take a full month off with pay, and add my vacation time of a couple of weeks to that, and I’m set for a six week vacation somewhere — like Australia for WARR I hope. That’s my plan, now to make it actually happen. Of course the more business that I can get coming in for SPRY Design Group, the better life will be. My brother wants to run with it full-time this summer, and I’m sure that if it goes good enough (which we all know it can), then I’d be willing to bet he’d continue at it, and forgo another volleyball season at SAIT…though I know he loves it. Guess that’s something we need to discuss, and probably will happen with the business chat this evening. We tend to do that on Wednesday evenings. (WC: 586)

2 Comments | Filed under null

How many circles?

So it’s been a few days since I wrote. I knew it would happen. I thought about trying to find a computer this weekend while up in Lake Louise at The Fairmont, but decided against it. I decided to actually take time out and relax. Apparently, I also forgot to post on Friday, so according to my calculations I owe you 360 words for four days resulting in 1440 words posted today. Holy smokes that’s a lot of writing to do!

I guess it’s a good thing to write though, since I’m working on my new ergonomic keyboard it will give me a chance to get used to it a little bit more. I think what I’ll do is split the posts up a little bit more and perhaps carry one of those days forward so that you don’t have to read it all at once — you know, one long pointless thought.

The weekend was spent skiing and relaxing in Lake Louise. For not having skied in about 5 years, I was actually somewhat impressed with myself that I didn’t completely bail and have my skis end up at the bottom of the hill without me. First run down the hill resulted in an almost wipe out, but I didn’t actually fall. “Great! That means I’m going to get progressively worse throughout the day” I thought to myself. Of course, being that the mind is so powerful, I instantly believed it, and as you can guess got a little worse each run down.

There were briefs period of brilliance and skill, but there were a lot of me as a beginner, and it showed. I figured that the easiest way to get up from falling was to simply not fall. Of course that didn’t always work so well. Oh well, no harm done in falling I guess.

It’s not such a great thing to have writers block, especially when I have to write so many words today, but it feels like that’s what I have. I guess it’s all the other work that’s building up that I’m thinking about. I’ll continue to write throughout today and get to that magical 1440…or you could just stand up and spin around 4 times and that would be the 1440 degrees that I would owe you!? Of course, now I’m just rambling on (though it was a great song).
(WC: 396)

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