Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes, the ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them, because they change things, they push the human race forward. While some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.
Steve Jobs would have turned 57 today. His words still ring in my ear like a school bell.
It was a usual morning, I woke up and already I was immersed in what I love--Writing. It was 11:oo A.M when my sister told me, “Steve Jobs is dead.” I couldn't believe her, she was quite the prankster. My Twitter account was open, as always. My eyes shifted to see the “Trending” topics, and one of them read “Steve Jobs.” I thought in panic: “Please be a rumor,” suddenly thousands of tweets confirmed the truth. It was October 5th 2011, Steve Jobs was dead, and I looked at my computer-screen in shock.
I knew Steve Jobs death was around the corner, I just never wanted to believe it was that near. Steve Jobs was a dreamer, great business leader and an “iConic” legend. His products were insanely great and every word he spoke was perfectly chosen.
Grasping the news, I knew I lost my hero. Steve Jobs inspired me to embrace being different, and honestly he showed me that being different was more than “Okay” it was “Genius and admirable.” He made “Nerds” and “Geeks” look cool.
I hated the fact that someday I’ll actually write a post about his death on my blog. It was a bitter thought that now became reality. However his words brought me peace… "No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life.” Steve Jobs.
Steve was different. Yes, he was a dreamer, but he was dreamer of the day. “All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible.” T.E Lawrence.
He made it possible.
Steve Jobs saw technology as a way to bring people together and improve life instead of being a distraction from it.
Sometimes I wonder why his words have affected me so deeply. He was a person, whom I had never met, yet I always dreamed Steve would be able to look at what I have created and know his inventions and his valuable words touched me deeply, he would feel proud. We all know this day will never come, but the lessons he taught me will never be taken away.
In the end, I realized that Steve left the world with faith in the next generation. He offered an apple, half bitten, to the world to enjoy it. He inspired me to live everyday to its fullest and not regret anything, because at the end when I connect the dots I’ll know that every choice I made was there for a reason. Like Steve did, I hope when I die I would leave the world knowing it is a better place.
One more thing....Happy Birthday Steve…
The best feeling in the world is to cross everything on your To-Do-List and feel “Productive” before having a good night sleep.
Productivity has different interpretations. A student would consider him/her self productive if they revised the lessons they learned at school, did their homework and prepare for their upcoming tests. A Golfer would consider him/her self productive if they practice every day and work on every aspect of their game. Whatever is your interpretation of productivity it has to include one important thing: Being effective in the use of all the resources surrounding you.
I define productivity by a simple equation: Productivity = Value / Time.
I don’t want to make productivity sound very mathematical, so here is my prefect productive day.
Waking up early (and by early I mean 7:00 A.M) that’s my own version of early. I would begin my day by checking my email/ Facebook/ Twitter and latest news; this will usually take fifteen minutes.
Then come the SAT Literature Practice Tests (Online/books) this is probably my favorite part of the day! Surprisingly I enjoy analyzing different paragraphs, and of course, poems. Though poems dating back to 1800s aren’t my favorites, I still enjoy spending a good amount of time building my English language skills to help me become a better writer.
Still I’m not done with English section for the day, because I will also be spending an hour (Sometimes I get carried away and spend an hour and a half) on strengthening my vocabularies and studying about word roots (Which is pretty interesting!) The English section would probably take three hours. To rest my mind/my eyes, I would read a book for another hour.
Organic Chemistry, calculus, AP US History, Languages (German + Chinese), Roman architecture (Yale Free Courseware Lectures) I spend a good amount of time on each subject.
The rest of the day would be writing, writing and writing (Drawing too) and sometimes when I’m watching TV I would memorize some Pi numbers (during commercials) to keep my memory active.
And as you are reading this you would probably say “Poor her…” But honestly, I enjoy every minute of the day. The feeling that I use every single minute of the day to be “Productive” means the world to me. I never do anything because “I have to” Yes, my days are similar to that. That would include weekends, unless I go golfing for 4 hours :)
As you can see, I spent a good amount of time in everything I do. For one thing, I like to make it nearly perfect/ or study everything as a whole.
As I head off to bed, I feel very satisfied when I cross everything off my To-Do-List, and feel very accomplished.
I still feel I need to do more. For example, I end up sometimes marking emails as important and then I forget to read them. (Which explains at least 20 emails waiting to be read) and I still have two books waiting to be revised (Typing Fingers & My novel). You can tell I hate revising and BTW, I’m not a big fan of re-reading books too.
What is not mentioned on the list is the minutes I spend reading tons of articles on the Huffington Post, how many times I re-write a sentence to make my blog post perfectly written (Like choosing the right synonyms etc..) However, I enjoy a minimum of 12 hours (Typically 14 hours) learning new things each day.
My definition of productivity is making use of every second, and every minute to expand my knowledge. I imagine what I do every day is sort of like a car assembly line, putting all the pieces together to end up with a nice car at the end of the day.
That’s my version of being productive. What is yours? And what’s your definition of productivity?
TIP: Here is how you can track your productivity this year:
I have a tiny bucket and every day that I feel “Accomplished/Productive” I would put a dirham (Whatever your currency is!) and at the end of the year the bucket should include 365 DHS (366 this year) you can then treat yourself or donate them to charity like I will!
Stay productive, stay productive…
This is a short story inspired by the poem "Mamie" written by Carl Sandburg.
There was something inherently appealing about this old-fashioned, worn out French furniture that lay scattered in the middle of the room, but the first thing she noticed was the cracked pale paint on the walls—pale like ghosts, everywhere she looked it felt the same. Her eyes scanned the room back and forth with desperate vision, as if she was trying to find one imperfect detail… but she couldn’t.
The pictures that hung on the wall haunted her, the way they lined up one by one against the dark-shiny brick brought her back a mixture of old memories—yet those were the memories she wished she buried behind her, back in the little Indiana town.
Where she stayed wasn’t an epicurean castle of fairy tales. Judy found herself surrounded by pale walls, cracked paint, curved Cedar wood stairs, raddled French furniture, awry chandelier, grey walls of mixed memories and finally irregular tables that had waxy circles of dripping candles and rusty silver spoons—perfect.
“Perfect” she thought.
The glass flower vase that stood right in the middle of the table—maybe one inch to the right caught the sunlight and twinkled like a tiny lamp.
She knew she ought to go… but where?
She got tired of the small city gossip, the barber shop boys and the old piece the band played. She found no excitement in going for a treasure hunt or finding mistreated maps, wrinkled around the edges. Instead, she would beat her head against the bars.
Carl Sandburg, Mamie:
She beat her head against the bars of little Indiana town and
Dreamed of romance and big things off somewhere the
Way the railroad trains all ran.
She wanted her own paintings out of sight, shuffled, turned away… anything, but she didn’t want to see them—because only then, only then she would find small imperfections and those imperfections would tease her forever. She hated them, all of them. Every masterpiece she drew, she hated it—in equal measures. But only when she stumbled across her poetry, she knew—she was like “those” poets.
She beat her head against the bars….
Judy walked through the narrow-dim hallway knowing that every picture that hung there, every painting she drew would bring her back a slice from her past.
Suddenly she broke her silence, “Why didn’t you keep me from making a fool of myself?” She asked in a low voice looking at her poster.
Judy laughed—a ridiculous laugh it was. She laughed, but tears hang tightly in her eyelashes trying not to fall and make their way down her cheeks—impossible.
She murmured words in her usual low voice and imagined herself sitting in a boat on a labyrinthine ocean. She was lost.
Only then she acknowledged that the life she led was a maze. She wanted perfection. Her life was based on “What was supposed to be” rather than how it was. After she stumbled across her painting “thoughts” she realized what she had been doing for the past years was nothing but making a blunder after another.
“Perhaps by their blunders that one gets to know people…” Judy grind, getting her voice back.
Now—only now Judy realized she led a frightfully “Perfect life” that if she was asked to re-live in a parallel world, she would live it differently. She wouldn’t care about the cracked paint, the awry chandelier or the scattered dominos on the table, and as the passage of time approaches, she only hoped other versions of “herself” didn’t lead a “Perfect life”
And even now she beats her head against the bars in the same old way and wonders if there is a bigger place the railroads run to from Chicago where maybe there is
And big things
And real dreams
That never go smash.