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Quote Me Tuesday: A place to engage & explore

Liverpool Biennial, Creative Avoidance

Liverpool Biennial, Liverpool 2010

Friday last week saw the launch of the Liverpool Biennial, an event I look forward to with huge excitement. The city fills with colour and depth, encouraging wanderings and exploration of galleries and public spaces, giving time to escape the cooler, darker autumn days (I cannot actually believe it has been two years since the last event!).

This year seems particularly prolific with around 45 places and spaces to see, explore and get involved.  A great place to start is on Renshaw Street in what was once Rapid Hardware but now a completely empty store providing the perfect backdrop to a diverse and eclectic gathering of international artistic talent  (just avoid the young female volunteer on the first floor if you hope to wander around with a coffee,  you will be barked at regardless of the fact that you may be an adult fully in control of a covered coffee vessel!).

There is no such censorship of the artwork so darkness and brutal depictions are blatant and thought provoking at times, other pieces alternating between the grotesque and the mundane.  The Time Bank is my personal favourite, particularly given my personal endeavours to increase the trading of skills and reduce consumption generally. There is an overall theme throughout, bringing over consumption and capitalism sharply into focus. Definitely worth a visit  or two!

There is so much more to to see so, this weeks Quote Me Tuesday comes, of course , from the Liverpool Biennial….. read, go explore and enjoy!

Quote Me Tuesday: Non Time Management

Pomodoro Technique

Since becoming a Freelancer I have experimented with various time management strategies most of which work solely on the basis that grappling with time generally means getting more done, an idea I have to admit has never actually sat comfortably with me (instead it has left me wondering just how do you manage time, this mythical beast that must be tamed?!) Inevitably, all have failed, I suspect due to the feeling that none would work for me long term.

We all have those days where nothing gets done even though we feel that we haven’t paused to take a breather. Interruptions, phone calls, emails and, my personal nemesis procrastination (oh and the increasing distractions of the purring ginger, Catmandu!). Enlightenment finally came this week courtesy of Charlie Brooker’s Guardian column who, in his usual style, detailed a personal battleground of distraction when writing.  A great article as usual but the bit that I found really interesting was his link to the Pomodoro Technique, a time management approach with a difference.

The technique is by far the simplest approach I have seen, focussing not on the management of time as a whole but on harnessing the power of short and intensive periods of working to effectively plan longer term.  Each time period, or pomodoro as the technique suggests, last for 25 minutes during which time no distractions are allowed. None, zilch, zero, just intensive concentration.  Then you get to take a break for 5 minutes. The idea being that you count the number of pomodoros required for any given task, aiding the ability to improve and adjust future project planning.  The bit I like best is that absolutely no gadgets are required other than a kitchen timer (quite possibly tomato shaped, hence the name!) a pencil and piece of paper.

So this week, I am putting the idea into action to see if the technique holds the promise I imagine.  Take a look at the idea in more succinct detail this Quote me Tuesday by visiting the Pomodoro Technique Website.