205-202-1755 shawn@shawnwright.net

If you grew up in front of the TV from 1985 to 1992 then you probably watched MacGyver. The show follows secret agent MacGyver who was played by Richard Dean Anderson. He was always using everyday materials to solve complex problems. MacGyver’s extraordinary ability to use gum, paper clips and a turkey baster to get out of danger was ripe for parody and even today most people know what is meant by saying the verb “to MacGyver.”

We can be MacGyver in our everyday lives. Some people refer to them as life triggers or life hacks. Simple things to make our life easier even if we don’t have to diffuse a bomb with a ballpoint pen and a rubber band.

Monday, March 11th is “Clean out your computer day.” Someone, somewhere, decided that the second Monday of the month would be a great time to clean out your computer.

Why not, it’s a great idea to schedule an event like this. We all have these huge hard drives on our computers and it’s very easy to leave old files and out of date applications cluttering up the place. We don’t notice anything now but sooner or later our hard drives will become more fragmented and empty space will become scarce, slowing down our computers.

There are ways to automate services on your computer. On my Mac I use a program called Hazel which watches folders and when a file is placed in that folder, Hazel triggers an action to handle that file.

An example is how I handle my stock photography. I buy photographs from services such as iStockPhoto.com and Shutterstock.com. The purchased files are sent to my download folders. The name of the company is in the filename so when Hazel sees it, the file is moved to my stock photography folder.

I can also use Hazel to empty my trash on particular day of the week or month or when the files have been in there for a certain number of days. This will keep my computer working its best.

Another automated service is “If This Then That,” better known as IFTTT. I use it to automatically send a copy of my blog posts to my Evernote account.

Since I can’t automatically turn a post from my blog into a notice on Google+, IFTTT sends me an email reminder to post to Google+ whenever a post goes live on my blog.

These are just a few ways life hacks can help you do those things that need to be done. An obvious place for these triggers to live is on your calendar.

I have a calendar for tracking life hacks. That is where my “clean out your computer” notice lives. The calendar is a trusted system as defined by David Allen of GTD fame.

One of my favorite life hacks is to change the battery in my smoke detectors the two times a year the time changes. Changing the air filter goes on the calendar as well.

I could go on and on with ideas but instead let me send you to a few sites that can help you get started.

These are just a few tips that can make your life easier and hopefully free up some time so you can create more content and keep serving your clients. Good luck MacGyver.

Shawn Wright
I have been in the advertising and marketing for over 30 years and now spend my time helping clients by creating websites and building their brand. I am a husband and father of two boys and I spend way too much time in the woods with the Boy Scouts.
Shawn Wright

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