As customer engagement with brands shifts more and more to online platforms, it is becoming increasingly important that brands are recognisable audibly as well as visually.

Chances are that, even if you don’t own an apple product yourself, you know what an iPhone sounds like when it rings and how a Macbook sounds like when starts up.

These sounds have become so iconit that they act not only as identifiers, but as symbols of quality and status. How many iPhone users do you know with custom ringtones?

Less than android owners, that’s for sure.

Every time I reach the conclusion of a game of chess, I find myself struggling to figure out how to craft a checkmate. When the game starts, there is a tempo to which both players trade pressure and pieces; there are always various possibilities with varying degrees of consequence, and no moves are likely to be your last.

But in the final moments, almost every more has the possibility to secure or thow away the game.

Maybe starting things is easier to finish them because stakes increase over time. Perhaps it’s just that we find it easier to forgive our mistakes when the boardstate is in chaos.

Either way, if you fail to checkmate your opponent, and you don’t win the game. Stalling is not an option.

You can feel it, like a storm brewing in the rear of your mind. You can see things slowly piling up. You know you should start, now. But you don’t.

You don’t, because you never do. Because something else always finds a way to capture your attention; holding it captive just long enough to let panic set in. Then, finally, you start. It’s too late too achieve what you know you could have, but it’s not too late to scrape something together.

When this narrative becomes a repetitive feature, thinks break (often things you’d prefer to keep in-tact).

Instead, cut the story short at its beginning. You feel the storm brewing, so you stop. You give yourself permission to do one of two things: the precise activity you’re meant to be doing, or absolutely nothing. No cheating. No exeptions.

Soon enough, you’ll be so bored that you’ll do anything to move on with your story.

It is almost always better to receive infomation about a result or decision before it has the chance to impact you.

There are niche cases, of course, when discovering something in the moment allows for powerful instictive reactions to take over; reactions which may be more beneficial than if you had have time to plan.

This is rare though.

Usually, finding out early is by far the best option. Which means that giving people information before it affects them is important, too. If you know someone is going to find out one way or another, why hold back?

Cut the fluff. Candid is king.

In her acceptance speech for the US National Book Award, writer, scientist and ecologist Rachel Carson argued that the arts of science and writing are inextricably linked.

The materials of science are the materials of life itself. Science is part of the reality of living; it is the what, the how, and the why of everything in our experience. It is impossible to understand man without understanding his environment and the forces that have molded him physically and mentally.

The aim of science is to discover and illuminate truth. And that, I take it, is the aim of literature, whether biography or history or fiction; it seems to me, then, that there can be no separate literature of science.

Rachel Carson

Even ficticious work, which does not seek truth in the literal sense, uncovers and explores the nature of humans as we are, have been, and could be.

Science and writing are seperate forms of exploration, unfied by the same motive.

A conspiracy, by nature, cannot be proved – as soon as it is, it ceases being a conspiracy. Facts, on the other hand, can be proved.

Science, by nature, iterates itself based on what is observed. Conspiracy seeks to provides the comfort of explanation without the heavy weight of the truth.

The truth can be painful, but it is always falsifiable; consiracy is comfortable, but it never is.

There’s only so many times you can forget something before realising that it’s not that important to you. So when we forget things which we feel should be important, it’s likely time to take stock.

Forgetting breakfast is one thing, but forgetting to walk your dog or feed your goldfish is another. If your responsibilites aren’t at the forefront of your mind, you have a priority problem; either you need to figure out what’s distracting you from what’s important, or go about discovering what important really means.

Never underestimate the efficient power of expertise; those who have been around the block have a distinct advantage.

Their insights are fuel for your progression and growth.

Surround yourself with masters you trust and aspire to, pay them the respect they’ve earned, and listen well.

Giving credit where it’s due is the only way to build credibility.

Most fierce declines are followed by surges; there’s a turning point, and things bounce back in the direction from which they came.

We’re right on the precepice of that here in Australia. Resteraunts are going to welcome us back, our gyms will be open at the crack of dawn and our community centres will be packed to the rafters.

The upshot of this virus might be that we’ll all be a little more eager to engage with one-another once it’s released us from its grasp.

We will flourish as a result of this — like wildflowers after a burn.

We get motivation from tasks and activites which offer us the clearest sense of progress. Unfortunately, the activites we should be doing aren’t always the activities which provide the clearest sense of progress.

This dissonance can cause us trouble.

Sifting through those 92 unread emails might feel like productivity as the number slowly dwindles, but there’s a good chance that we’d be ignoring some important work in the process.

It isn’t enough to work efficiently. If we want to do great work, we need to be focussed as well as efficient. Every working moment is self-investment. Invest wisely.