Low hanging fruits (LWCW 2020)
During Less Wrong Community Week-end (Europe), in one event people share low-hanging fruit they used. I chaired it this year and defined low-hanging fruit as something that can be easily bought or done that improved the life. Here is the list of fruits shared in 2020. All typos are mine. “I” usually reflect the one who gave the message and not the author of this blog post.
Water watering bulbs
Before work time
Reserve some time in the morning, before you head out to work, and invest this into something that is important to you. You do this without any experience from the day (bad/good) and with you full physical ability.
Ad block on smartphone
Blokada https://blokada.org/index.html Add blocking for android. Reduce noises, distraction, bandwidth (?), easy to install. added bonus: Firefox + Ublock origin
Playing music is to listening to live music as live music is to recorded music. If you don’t want to spend time to learn an instrument, the Kalimba is cheap and directly lead to beautiful musics.
No device at night
Set all devices to lock at sleeping time.
Get a smart lightbulb, and setting to slowly dim/become red for the half hour before bed—makes going to bed at the right time the default action and makes me feel tired, and signficantly decreases the willpower it takes.
End the day with a paper book to avoid looking at screen.
Two to ten minutes of sun in the morning, or by default strong light
Schedule things in morning so that you have incentive to sleep.
Having phone 3 meters from bed, to force to go outside of bed to turn it of
Day / night separation
Ensuring you don’t see your bed from your workplace (and reciprocally) , to feel the separation between work space and personal space
Switching to using a fountain pen can force you to write slower and therefore neater. Pilot makes very cheap and good-writing fountain pens (the Pilot Varsity) that are disposable just like regular ballpoints, they’re around $20 US for a pack of 12
Use the software One Note to keep tracks of notes about everything.
Recalling fact about friends
You can use space repetition system to recall fact about friends (who is friend with who, where they moved to, what’s the current job...)
Writing a name done help to remember it (some people at least)
Uses Facebook event to remember who went to an event, who you met, and use it to take note (avoid notes from fetlife events)
Spaced repetition also helps to recall birthdays of friends/family!
Create your own wiki (e.g. wikimedia) to keep notes and links them together, so that you can revisit them when you want. Pre-commit two hours each month to see if you want to improve the wiki, add links, explanation
Bullet journaling, there’s a great guide on reddit at /r/bulletjournal
carrying a small A5 or A6 sized notebook with you can be very useful
Have an idea catcher, some place to write idea down to not forget it and not keeping the idea in mind while you do something else
Use a password manager to recall general private information you need to generally have private and accessible such as account number, all previous addresses, photo, file
Win time while writing
If there are unicode symbols you expect to use often (e.g. math symbol, foreign letter), save them as shortcut or emoji, so they can be accessed quickly and put in any message
Using autocorrect allow to shorten text you write often. E.g. @@ is automatically replaced by your email adresse, sigma replace by σ )
You can also do this on windows with autohotkey and there are similar scripts for linux/mac
even lower hanging: I find the US international layout helpful”
Start with combination stone. low to get better knife, and then cook easier to cut your food. It helps to relax. Allow more flexibility/granularity than standard knife sharpening
Set up email inbox rules to sort messages from senders you consider low-priority or work-related (if you use a combined inbox) to their own folder so you don’t have to look at them all the time. also: if using Outlook Web App there’s an option to have a text message sent to your phone as a result of an inbox rule: I have a rule that texts me if my boss’s boss (2 levels up) sends a direct email with my name in the To: line
Use more gif in chat conversation to add more silliness and joy in chat discussions
As your light bulbs in your house burn out convert to LED ones, they use less power and can be softer too! You can buy LEDs with the sun spectrum and same intensity!
Keep a list of desire/fantasy, so that if a new relationship ask what new thing you’d want to try, you don’t get lost thinking about it
Leaning about the back of the chair a few time a day relax. Most office chair allow to do it
Instead of getting a gaming chair spend the same money on a lightly used executive office chair like a Herman Miller or a Steelcase, your back will thank you. also: if you have a dealer that sells those fancy chairs near you, you can go try them to find out what size fits you best before you look for used one
Have a list of phone number to call in your wallet so that the people can call you.
Neel Nanda shared his personal list of low hanging fruit.