Disconnecting – one way to improve focus and being present

Being present and living in the moment is one of the key principles I’ve learned through my meditation practice over the past few years. Meditation reinforces the principle by having you sit quietly and observe your thoughts. It’s an interesting process, and one that can be unsettling and sometimes a bit scary when you have a mind as active as mine.

Anyways, my meditation practice has encouraged me to look for ways to improve being present when I’m not sitting alone with my thoughts. There are so many things that vie for our attention during the day that it’s easy to get distracted. If I were to list the biggest offenders, the internet and my phone would be near the top of the list, if not at the top.

While I’d like to experiment with disconnecting for multiple days, it’s not something that’s easy to do given my work. So I find it interesting to read (and learn) about others’ experiences. The latest experience came courtesy of David McCain, who runs the blog Raptitude.com. You can read about his full experience here – https://www.raptitude.com/2022/02/what-i-learned-during-my-three-days-offline/

I really enjoyed the post and figured I’d share the things I learned from it.

(Not lost on me is the irony of having to be online to read a post about what I learned about someone else being offline, but that’s a topic for another time.)

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Fixing ‘Invalid argument supplied for foreach()’ PHP Warning in WordPress

I ran into a problem recently on a WordPress site that I manage where I was unable to disable and uninstall numerous plug-ins. After looking through the error logs on the web server, I found the following warning showing up repeatedly in the PHP error log:

PHP Warning: Invalid argument supplied for foreach() in /var/www/html/example.com/wp-cron.php on line 117

Here’s what I did to identify and fix the problem.

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Book review: The Silent Patient

Book cover for The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Outside of entertainment and learning, one of the things I enjoy most about reading is discussing and sharing books with others. I especially like it when people share book recommendations with me. Nearly all my most interesting reads have come from recommendations. And while I might not get to all of my recommendations right away, eventually I manage to get to them. I know my daughter Courtney can relate.

Anyway, both Courtney and Amanda read The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides last year. They both liked it, a lot. Since they both highly recommended it, I made it a point to put it at the top of my 2022 reading list even though it isn’t in my primary reading genre of science fiction. I wasn’t exactly sure what I was getting into, but I figured I’d give it a shot.

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2022 Fitness goals

Every year I like to do a review of the past year’s fitness goals and set new ones for the next year. This year is no different, even if I’m publishing them over a month into the year.

If you’ve followed my goals from years past, I usually focus on three areas – working out, physical activity, and diet. This year is going to be more of the same.

First, we’ll start by reviewing last year’s goals. Then we’ll move on to the goals for 2022.

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Book review: After On – A Novel of Silicon Valley

Book cover for After On: A Novel of Silicon Valley by Rob Reid

The Singularity.

The technological point when a general artificial intelligence becomes more powerful than and uncontrollable by humans. The AI does it by continuously improving itself in faster and faster cycles.

When you read as much science fiction as I do, you run into a lot of books about The Singularity. The reason is obvious. How will runaway artificial intelligence treat humans. Will it serve us benevolently and improve our lives? Or will it see us as resources that need to be optimized, bags of water and organic matter that it can use to meet its objective? Furthermore, is its emergence as inevitable as some make it out to be?

Author Rob Reid explores the topic in his book After On.

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Books to read in 2022

Looking for books to add to your reading list in 2022? Here are 10 titles for your consideration. The list is broken into three categories – General Recommendations, Personal Development, and Business. I’ve also included a list of fun reads if my 10 must reads aren’t enough.

As you dive into the list, keep in mind that my tastes lean towards technology and science fiction, so most of the books on the list are from those genres.

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Book review: Creativity, Inc.

Book cover for Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull

My final morning read for 2021 was Creativity, Inc. by Ed Catmull. In case you don’t know who Ed Catmull is, which I didn’t before reading the book, he was one of the co-founders and CEO of Pixar. Yes, that Pixar. The one that made movies such as the Toy Story franchise, A Bug’s Life, Up, Cars, Monsters, Inc., and more.

There’s an interesting story behind how I learned about the book, and it’s one I’m going to share. Why? Because it’s what I do. It’s who I am.

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