John Poelstra

Bringing order to chaos and clarity to confusion

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Knowing When It’s Time to Move

I saw an an interesting article over on LinkedIn by Dr. Marla Gottschalk titled 7 Very Telling Signs Your Job is a Poor Fit. The seven signs are: You feel lost Your strengths aren’t being tapped Challenge is absent You… Continue Reading →

Defining My Mission | My WHY

Background I’m working through Chris Brogan’s Owner’s Path course, an exploration and challenge to put into practice what it means to really own your business. One of the first exercises was to set a mission statement. I spent a fair… Continue Reading →

Money is a Result Not a Belief

Reading more from Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek. In a previous post I reflected on the affect of different WHYs. I liked this quote about the confusion around money and it’s… Continue Reading →

Are You Inspired or Swayed?

Here’s a great section from Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Action by Simon Sinek. Great leaders, in contrast, are able to inspire people to act. Those who are able to inspire give people a sense of… Continue Reading →

Uncertainty and Security

More good stuff from Everything That Remains, this time from pages 114 and 115. We hold on to jobs we dislike because we believe there’s security in a paycheck. We stay in shitty relationships because we think there’s security in… Continue Reading →

Time, Motivation and Chunking

I was talking to someone recently about blogging and how there just didn’t seem to be a way to make consistent progress or posting to their blog. They talked about their schedule and how other things were often more important… Continue Reading →

Defining Success

I first got the idea of clearly defining success from Tony Robbins. It changes so much. The best part about defining your own success is that since it is YOUR definition you can define it anyway you like. If you… Continue Reading →

What’s the Next Step?

Like many people I’ve never made it all the way through David Allen’s popular book Getting Things Done. One of the most valuable take-aways I did get from Allen’s system was getting really clear on what the “next step” is… Continue Reading →


More from Everything That Remains on p. 65 I’ve always claimed that my priorities are grandly important activities like spending time with family or exercising or carving out enough time alone to write.  But they’re not.  Until I actually put… Continue Reading →

Avoiding Aimlessness

I’m reading more from Die Empty. This is all kind of common sense type stuff, but it’s good to be reminded of these things in such succinct ways. From page 58: The key takeaway is this: To avoid aimlessness, you… Continue Reading →

Giving Time Management Advice

I saw a post recently on the Portland startup switchboard looking for time management recommendations. At first I thought it was an easy questiont to answer, however the more I thought about it I realized it wasn’t. Here’s the essence… Continue Reading →


Perhaps being productive is not purely about action. Maybe it’s more about overall forward progress. Being productive and accomplishment are important values to me.  This article was a good reminder that productivity itself is not an end. It’s titled Against… Continue Reading →

Start With Why

  Lots of people talk about this TED talk, but I wonder how many have really watched the whole thing and absorbed the message. I’ve tried to watch it a few times, but usually while trying to do something else…. Continue Reading →

Put Away the You-Gun

I’m borrowing the term You-Gun from Paul Spindel. In one of his fantastic project management courses at Portland State University several years ago he talked about the you-gun. He encouraged us to “put away the you-gun” in difficult conversations. It’s… Continue Reading →

Where Do You Go to Get Things Done?

This is the dilemma of today’s office presence. I’ve walked through or heard of more than one fancy new office space that’s empty because half of the people work are working from home on a given day. I love working… Continue Reading →

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