Thrilled…

How Science Can Help You Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions

How Science Can Help You Achieve Your New Year's Goals

Are you having trouble sticking to your New Year’s goals? I am.

I have two: to lose the weight I gained last year, and to complete and successfully defend my dissertation. Although this requires me to focus on two goals, I believe I can achieve these two goals by focusing on one goal: being disciplined. As Nike says, “Just Do It.”

Most of all, I remind myself to maintain a positive mindset, and iterate. “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.”

How do you stay on track when you set a goal?

[Image via: Happify.com.]

<tamingdata /> Blog Milestones…

Milestones

Recently, I hit a few milestones with this blog that I would like to acknowledge.

I had just under 11k hits on this blog for the month of August 2014. That was the first time I had gone over 10k, period, and I almost made it to 11k.

A few days ago, I noticed I had passed the 100k mark for hits on this blog as the sum for this past twelve months. I’ve ignored this blog a bit for the past few months, while I started up a company and worked to complete my dissertation, so I was even more amazed at the numbers.

Last, but not least, this week, <tamingdata /> is five years old.

I must say, I feel so humbled and grateful that all of you are willing to give this blog your time and attention.

“Thank you”, from the bottom of my heart.

Bullet Journal: Students and Analog-to-Digital Day Planner Conversion (Yes! It is Possible!)

I received this note last week from my contact page.

Hi! I really enjoyed reading about your experience with the Bullet Journal. I am thinking about giving it a go, but I am in grad school and a lot of my planning is around assignments. I have a LOT of homework…reading, lesson plans, etc. If you have any ideas about how to use the Bullet Journal system with tons of homework assignments I would really appreciate suggestions! I have a master list now in an excel spread sheet but I have no idea how I would put them into the Bullet system without planning every day of the month out with due dates. Thank you for taking the time to read my message and if you have a minute I would love to hear from you. Thank you and love your blog! -Jenna

I wanted to share my reply today.

Hi Jenna!

First, I apologize for taking a week to get back to you. What with the Thanksgiving holiday, and then catching up on work, I am only today getting through all of my emails.

I am a doctoral candidate, and I have not yet found the perfect solution for managing my time.

What I do with the bullet journal is on the monthly index, I’ll set aside 3 pages. They look something like this:

(Page 1)
December 2014 Index
Personal
**list tasks

(Page 2)
December 2014 Index
Dissertation
**list tasks

December 2014 Index
Research Assistantship
**list tasks

I tend to put appointments, meetings, etc. in my digital calendar, and then use the bullet journal for task tracking.

I hope this helps.

Also, FastCoDesign had this article today [about Adobe, LiveScribe and Evernote’s analog-to-digital work with Moleskine].

From one of the slides:

“It’s not the first time we’ve seen Moleskine embrace the shifting digital culture. Recently, they’ve released notebooks that pair with Livescribe pens to automatically digitize notes and doodles, and Evernote to upload your analog day planner into your cloud-based calendar.”

I plan to look into this, myself.

Best Regards,

Jewel

Do you all have any suggestions for Jenna? Has anyone tried Moleskine with Evernote, Livescribe, or Adobe?

How Food and Family Meals Impact Our Happiness

Have you ever wondered whether it is the food or the company, or both, that brings us the most happiness?

If you have ever had the “best meal ever” with friends and family, and maybe the food itself was not so great, then you may not be surprised to learn that it is the company that matters, not the food.

Oh, and at Thanksgiving and other major holidays, stick to tradition.

How Food and Family Meals Affect Our Happiness

Did anything in this infographic surprise you?

I was happy to learn that lemon water brings down stress levels.

[Via: Happify.com.]

Are You a Late Bloomer?

too-late-to-learn-late-bloomers-people-who-succeeded-infographic

Are you an early bloomer? A late bloomer? Mid-life?

I cannot answer that question, myself. I’ve been a life-long learner, and I’ve enjoyed every stage of my life. I’m curious, though, about how other people feel about their lives.

[Via: Funders and Founders.]

What Have I Been Up To? Dissertation Writing…Sort of…

I hope to post regularly this semester, but I hope to finish my dissertation completely this semester as well. Between the two choices, I may have to set aside this blog a bit while I analyze, write, research, and revise (repeat).

Here are some comics to make you smile on a Monday. I think these apply to any writing task, not just the dissertation or thesis.

PhD Comics: Thesis Writing
[Source: PhD Comics.]

PhD Comics: Our Thesis
[Source: PhD Comics.]

PhD Comics: Finished Thesis
[Source: PhD Comics.]

I very much relate to this one below, especially the coffee part.

PhD Comics: Blood Sweat Tears Coffee
[Source: PhD Comics.]

PhD Comics: Writing Your Thesis Outline
[Source: PhD Comics.]

PhD Comics: Your Thesis Title
[Source: PhD Comics.]

PhD Comics: The Thesis Repulsor Field
[Source: PhD Comics.]

This is me, below. I hate to admit that, but it is.

PhD Comics: Why? Why???
[Source: PhD Comics.]

And, this gem below is me, too. (Insert a friend or roommate, though, not a boyfriend or spouse.)

PhD Comics: You Have Started Writing, Haven't You?
[Source: PhD Comics.]

Last but not least, The Thesis Committee, below. I’ve posted this one before, but it is so wonderful I want to post it again.

PhD Comics: The Thesis Committee
[Source: PhD Comics.]

How do you procrastinate when you write? I mean any writing…a blog, a paper, a news article, a letter to someone, or, a thesis or dissertation.

I think I am past the “dread” stage, and I hope I am past the worst of the procrastination stage. I want to finish and start the next phase of life. This has been a wonderful journey, but it is time to move on.

And now, I’ll stop writing this blog post as a form of productive procrastination, and get back to the dissertation writing.

Have a great day!

If Game of Thrones Had Mass Transit…

What would a mass transit map for Westeros and EssosThe Known World from The Game of Thrones—look like? Michael Tyznik decided to find out and created these wonderful maps that both explain and poke fun of the complicated story lines of the book and HBO series.

Inspired by the work of Cameron Booth and his awesome Transit Maps Tumblr, I created these rail maps of Westeros and The Known World. Hopefully fans will notice some small touches — the closed stations along the Wall Line, for example.

Prints of the maps are available starting at $40 at inPRNT: Westeros and The Known World. You can also view the maps at high resolution on my Flickr: Westeros and The Known World.

Here’s the starting point. Clicking on the images will take you to a larger, zoomable image.

  1. We’re at the main station for the city of King’s Landing, viewing a map of “Rail Transport in Westeros”.
  2.  
    King's Landing Header-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  3. Next, we can view more closely the full transit Routes map and Key of “Rail Transport in Westeros”.
  4.  
    Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  5. As you can see, in Westeros, all roads lead to King’s Landing.
  6.  
    Close up King's Landing-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  7. Rail transport even extends to Pyke, on the Iron Islands.
  8.  
    Close Up-Pyke Iron Islands-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  9. The Known World has mass transit in Essos, as well. Here is the Key, plus “Routes in Essos”. Based on the map alone, Essos is more sparsely settled than Westeros.
  10.  
    Rail Transport in The Known World-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  11. Please note that the service to Valyria has been discontinued, while service to Slavers Bay and the Gulf of Grief continues.
  12.  
    Close Up-Slavers Bay-Rail Transport in Westeros-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  13. Please note the closed stations along the Wall. Castle Black, as always, remains open and on guard. The distance between Winterfell and Castle Black is approximate.
  14.  
    Close Up-Winterfell-Castle Black-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik
     

  15. Last, but not least, is a close up of the Key and “Routes in Essos” from “The Known World” transit map.
  16.  
    Key-Routes in Essos-Game of Thrones-Michael Tyznik

    These maps are a labor of love. They show a great attention to detail, artistic ability, and creativity. I think these maps are a lovely way to mix reality and fantasy.

    What do you think of the transit maps. Do you have any comments you’d like to make?

    Valar morghulis, dear readers.

    [Source: Michael Tyznik via Buzzfeed.]

What is Sexual Harassment? And, Kudos to Gentlemen Everywhere

Are you a guy, wondering what women consider harassment? Are you a female and you struggle to put into words something that is almost invisible?

This poster does a great job of explaining every day examples of harassment. The author includes examples for men as to how they can react to shut down other men, and how men can be an ally — e.g., a “gentleman” — to their girlfriends, wives, mothers, and friends.

From RobotHugs:

TRIGGER WARNING: This comic discusses harassment, sexism, rape culture, and toxic attitudes towards women and femmefolk. It includes examples of slurs, harassment, and quotes from sexual offenders.

This is the longest comic I’ve ever done and it’s a monster and it took me forever and I never want to draw again.

Harassment by RobotHugs.com

Women: do you agree or disagree with any scenarios presented in this poster? What do you think about the authors’ advice to men on how to be an ally of women?

Men: did this provide examples to you of harassment and what it looks like? Do you agree or disagree with the advice on how to be an ally to women?

[Source: Robot Hugs.]