[watch “Better Yogurt Through Post-It Notes” on YouTube; 3:03 minutes]
Like last week’s video, this crazy little how-to is more about systems thinking, viewing things though the lens of friction reduction, than it is a nutty one-off hack about closing browser tabs or sticking Post-Its on things. Actually, when you really think about it, most of my videos are about that, excepting the spicy ones.1
In this case, my points are two-fold.
First, when you get stuck, stop and think (after briefly raging at the heavens or whatever): what stuck me, and what might prevent that from happening again aside from my own deep feelings of frustration and personal inadequacy.
Second, for tasks or processes you tend to repeat, in my case, making tub after tub of yogurt, look for ways to streamline up to, but stopping short of, the point of ridiculousness. In this case, it cost me zippo to write out two sticky notes at once.
I guess there’s a third point, as well: a system that’s working is fine. You don’t have to change it! And as I hinted at in Point the Second, you don’t want to go too nutty with the tweaking. Keep the goal in sight, and remember: forest, not trees.
As to all the yogurt-talk, here is a fine explanation of our delicious yogurt, including how-tos for making it in a yogurt-maker or (gas) oven. They spell it with an “h”, but it works just fine down here in Canada South.
And here’s that SCD page on my site, because I keep taking links off the front page in my decluttering rampages.
Now, back to bed!
1I owe what little I’ve been able to absorb and implement on systems thinking to my friend and client Sam Carpenter, who literally wrote the book on it. It’s an easy and useful read, and the stuff is applicable to any line of work or area of interest in the physical world: kind of like uber-hacking. I wrote a review which you can read here. I also highly recommend Sam’s newsletter (sign up via his website) and not just because I taught him everything he knows about making that particular system work better. (Insert winky emoticon here.)