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Setting up VIP Notifications in Apple Mail, Music for Deep Work, and More

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Music for Deep Work »

Music for Deep Work

I’ve always loved music, from picking out melodies on the piano as a kid, to specializing in a music education program through college, it has been a central theme through a lot of my life. Since college, I’ve had less to do with making or playing music besides occasionally tinkering with our old upright piano from time to time.

As someone that spends a good deal of time staring at screens for my work, music definitely plays a role in some of my daily rituals.

How to Set Up VIP Notifications in Apple Mail »

It doesn’t take long for an email inbox to overflow, does it?

If you’re like most people and leave notifications enabled for every new message, you’ll quickly find yourself frustrated by the number of times these notifications interrupt your focus. Luckily, Apple Mail allows you to designate certain contacts as VIPs, which gives you two key benefits:

  1. A new inbox folder appears that displays only messages from these contacts, making it easy to zero in on important correspondence.
  2. You can set Apple Mail to notify you exclusively for messages from VIP contacts, minimizing interruptions.

Here’s how to set up and use VIP notifications in Apple Mail on both macOS on iOS.

Mike’s Idea System 2.0 »

Mike’s Idea System 2.0

I’ve always been fascinated by the human brain.

As amazingly powerful as our computers have become, in some ways they still don’t hold a candle to your biological hardware. For example, they’re great for repeatable tasks and automation, but your brain is far superior when it comes to ideation and brainstorming.

Which begs the question — where do ideas come from in the first place? What is the value of a single good idea, and how can you tell which ones are good and deserve more attention, and which ones aren’t worth the trouble?

I guess I’m just naturally a curious person.

That curiosity is what led me to develop what I call my “idea development system.” The goal of the idea management system is three-fold:

  1. Make sure no ideas slip through the cracks
  2. Help me tell which ideas are good and which ones aren’t
  3. See how big or small an idea really is (see how deep the rabbit hole goes)

One of the unexpected benefits of this idea system is that it made it much easier for me as a creator. Where I previously might have gotten stuck or hit writer’s block, my idea system helps me to keep my creative pump primed. By making sure I always have a stockpile of good ideas to work on and a process for developing them before I sit down to write, I no longer have to dread staring at an empty screen with a blinking cursor.

How to Use Folding & Focus Mode in MindNode »

If you work with large mind maps frequently, you’ve probably already experienced how overwhelming things can become as your mind map continues to grow.

Fortunately, MindNode has a couple of features that make it a lot easier to focus on only the sections you want to see.

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