Why You Should Only Pack 2 Electronic Devices on Your Vacation

When visiting a country that often brings people to tears with its beauty, you don’t want to skimp on the things that help you capture the moment. That may be a pen and your journal, charcoal and sketch pad or your favorite camera.

On my trip to Peru, I brought my two favorite cameras and a journal.

Camera #1 is my Fuji X100T – It’s a medium sized, lightweight yet incredible camera. It’s tack sharp, truly impressive when taking pictures in very low light situations, and has a simple, easy to use design.

FujiFilm X100T

Camera #2 is my iPhone 6 64 GB – The video is incredible and it’s really easy to take panoramic photos. It’s often difficult capture the awe of incredible places. For me, video is the answer when the photos just aren’t good enough. I love hearing the sounds of a river or waterfall, and watching friends’ faces light up at the beautiful sights we’re taking in.

My iPhone 6

We go on vacation to get away and recharge. Connecting to the internet, especially social media and email, can seriously hinder that process. no-facebook-logo-webBut if you can’t completely let go, I would encourage you to only bring your iPhone and not your computer.
If that’s not enough for you, here are a few bullet points that explain why should you leave your other devices like a laptop at home:
  • You’re more in the moment: The longer you’re away from outside influences, the more those things start to fade away and you can truly be present. Let the stress slip away.
  • Less stuff to carry around: All your gear adds up. It’s not just the laptop, but the charger and other cables you would use.
  • Less risk of loss due to theft or damage: Do you want the weight of “what happens if some one steals my bag?” hanging over you the whole trip?

Now, let’s see what this X100 can do…

Click on the photos for the high resolution version.

Moray

This is Moray, my favorite site of the whole trip. Something about this place is incredible. You stand at the top and look down and think, what did these people know then that we don’t know now? Each level has it’s own temperature. From top to bottom there is a 27 degree difference (Fahrenheit). As you’re walking along the trail you go from hot to chilly depending on the wind that catches you.

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The X100 lens is so sharp!

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This scene in real life had me in tears it was so incredible. I wish it translated better in camera.

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The low light sensitivity is awesome. I was able to get great shots of everything I wanted in a really dark museum without using a flash. In fact, I’ve never used the flash on this camera. It has never been necessary.

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I wish I took photos inside this place. The garden through the doors was just as dramatic as the lighting outside. So beautiful, and you would have never known walking by.

This shot above is a big reason I love this camera so much. It’s not a great photo, but I would have never gotten this shot with my old camera, and my iPhone would have done a poor job too.

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This is the famous Machu Picchu. It’s a city in the clouds and absolutely stunning. Taking photos  just seemed futile after a while.

And this is why I love my iPhone so much!

Video… Be sure to click the gear and switch the playback to HD. The quality of YouTube at 480p is pretty bad and doesn’t show off the video at all.  These aren’t going to win any awards, but they help me remember the moment.

Our guide surprised us with a flute player creating the sound track for our walk through Pisac. Little touches like that made the trip stand out.

Here you really get a sense of how high up we are and how steep this mountain is. You wonder how in the world they got these stones up here from miles away.

The Fuji takes decent video, but the iPhone does a much better job. It smooths everything out automatically, the quality is outstanding and it focuses much faster than the Fuji.

Since you’re going to be taking a lot of photos and videos with your iPhone, you’ll want to make sure you have enough space to store these items. Not just on your phone but on iCloud too in case of theft or damage.

Let’s take a look at how much space you have available on your iPhone. Go to Settings > General > Usage.

Usage is broken up into three categories: Battery, Storage, and iCloud Storage. Today we’ll just look at the last two.

Storage: This is how much space you physically have available on your phone to take photos and videos, store apps etc. You cannot upgrade this storage. To have more, you have to buy a whole new phone. I would recommend having at least 5 GB free.

I used 15 GB on this trip, your milage may vary.

*If you’re in the market for a new phone, it’s really convenient having 64 GB instead of the baseline 16 GB. With everything we do on our phones now, it’s easy to fill them up.

iCloud Storage: This is how much space you have on Apple’s servers to back up your phone. You get 5 GB for free. I pay $0.99/month for 20 GB of iCloud storage. This was just enough to make sure my phone was always being backed up on my trip. When I had wifi.*

Before I left I had 15 GB free. I just checked my phone now and it turns out I’m almost out of space. To free up that space, I’ll make sure that I’ve imported all my photos and videos to my computer, then delete them from my phone. After that, I’ll have plenty of iCloud storage again.

*If you need extra help in this department, please reach out to me! I can straighten all this out for you and your family on site or anywhere in the world.

Only taking these two devices left me feeling free to be in the moment all through the trip. You can walk around not worried about all the gear you left at the hotel or in the car, and not be weighed down with a bunch of stuff in your bags.

In addition by not checking in with email and social media, you can slowly let it go and just enjoy where you’re at, being present and relaxed.

If you’re interested in the X100T and the accessories I recommend, click here.

If you want to see more pictures of my trip, click here.

Question: What do you take on your trips and why?

Going to Peru and My Upcoming Nozbe Course

Machu and Nozbe

I want to thank you all for sharing my posts and your referrals. Thanks to you, my business just keeps growing and growing!

This post is to inform you about 2 very exciting things:

#1:  You’re invited to get a free sneak peak at a training series I’m putting together on productivity using the incredible Nozbe app.

#2:   I’m going to be taking a couple weeks off and won’t be able to be reached between April 9th-21st. I’m going to Peru!

 

I’ve known about Nozbe for quite some time now. I dismissed it when I started using it when I saw that it had a monthly cost and it had more features than Wunderlist.

nozbe vs wunderlist

Yes you read that correctly, I dismissed it because it had more features that Wunderlist. I’m a minimalist at heart. I don’t dismiss things with a lot of features as a rule. I just find more things than I need distracting. Can you relate to that?

I came back around to Nozbe a few weeks ago when my father-in-law’s team, michaelhyatt.com asked me to do a training course on it for them. They have been using an app called Slack for their internal communication which has been amazing, but actionable tasks were starting to get lost in the swift current of online communication.

nozbe plus slack

They wanted to get everyone on board using Nozbe for task management so they would have better accountability, communication for task specific items, etc.

If you’ve ever had to teach something, you know that it’s the best way to learn something. This process made me look at Nozbe inside and out, and think about how they would use it.

I did a webinar for them, but too much went wrong during the session. Since it was being recorded for people who couldn’t make it on the webinar and I didn’t want others to have to suffer through our technical difficulties, I decided I would rerecord it.  You may not know this, but I’m sort of an over-recovering perfectionist.

Since I felt I had to redo it, I wanted to make something better and than the original.

It’s not perfect, but here is a 2 part video series, talking about Nozbe and productivity. They average about a minute and a half each.

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This is the beta, so I need your feedback on what could be done to make it better. I have an outline and am finishing the copy and all the additional tools I’m going to add into the course. Now is the time to get some suggestions. Would you please email me at shawn@shawnlemon.com to let me know what you think?

This beta will only be available while I’m in Peru, so watch it while you can, then expect a finished course sometime in the future!

It’s broken up by the basics, and productivity. If you already know the basics, jump to productivity. I found out some pretty cool stuff you can do with the app, and threw in some things I’ve learned along the way from productivity to goal setting to self help books.

It’s in a bit more of a conversational format, trying not to get too technical. I hope you benefit from it!

Nozbe Training Series <——– This is the link

Please share this with some one you think could use this! You sharing my content or your experience with me is how my business thrives! Thanks!

Why iOS 8 is Changing Your Life

iOS 8

How many times have you wanted to send someone a message, but you don’t want to type it, and you don’t really need to call them? Wouldn’t it be nice if you could just leave them a voice message? Now, you can!

Photos – I’m a photo guy, but for some reason I just don’t get into it much on my phone. I have VSCO and all, but it’s so rare for me to use it. The new photos app lets you edit right in the Camera Roll so maybe I’ll make an effort on my photo post production. You like that I got all professional on you with post production?

Notifications – I looked this one over when I first heard about it, then when I was messing with the beta of iOS 8, it blew me away how much I loved it. When you double click the home button it shows you who you’ve been communicating recently and gives you options to text or call right there instead of having to switch apps. Sounds trifle, but you’ll see 🙂

4 Easy Steps to Email Productivity

All of us deal with it, some more than others; it’s that annoying alert, ding, or vibration letting you know you have yet another email.
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SaneBox is a resource that will keep you focused on saving time, our most precious commodity, and do so efficiently and quickly. SaneBox moves unimportant emails out of your Inbox, into a separate folder, and summarizes them in a daily digest. There is nothing to learn or install! It analyzes your past email behavior and social network connections to determine what’s important to you.

Once I saw how well this worked,  I installed it for one of my clients,Robert D. Smith. He had over 500,000 emails and gets more emails than I have ever seen!  He had 30 different Folders and only used 5 of them.

Here’s what we did to get an email account with over 500,000 emails under control and automated:

1. Sign up for a SaneBox trial.

2. Looked at all the folders and consolidated to the bare essentials. Less choices means less time and energy trying to decide where things should go. Make broad categories and search to help conserve time.

3. Create a “Custom Folder” on SaneBox.com. Eg. Robert gets a ton of receipts for people buying product and needs to keep those records. We created a folder called “Shipping Notifications” so all emails related to products and shipping gets dumped into the “Shipping Notifications” folder automatically so he can review when necessary. If any email has a specific subject or address, it gets put in the right folder so there is no confusion – automatically without him doing anything.

4. Move Emails into the Folder that You just Created. For Robert, we took his old folder of UPS notifications and dragged them into the new folder we created on SaneBox. That’s it! Nothing else had to be done to make it work. Emails started flowing into that box automatically; the “Setup” was just dragging the emails into the folder so SaneBox knew what to put in the folder.

That’s it; simple, easy, productive, and efficient! This tool is your rock-star executive assistant keeping you focused on what’s most important.

If you’re interested in making your correspondence less of a headache, and much more efficient sign up for the FREE trial here. Make sure to check out the feature called the Black Hole, it makes sure you never have to unsubscribe to an email again!

Like this and want to hear more about how you can save time, money, and speed up your Mac? Please reach out to me through email or schedule a call. I’d love to hear what you’re doing and see how I could help you!

Question: What do you do to stay on top of your email? Let me know in the comments below.

The Morning Routine that’s Suffocating Your Life

Photo by John Haslam: https://www.flickr.com/photos/foxypar4/

Photo by John Haslam: https://www.flickr.com/photos/foxypar4/

If you want to create something worth while with your life, you need to draw a line between the world’s demands and your own ambitions. – Mark McGuinness

“I have more technology than I know what to do with, yet I have less time than ever.” Does this ring a bell? It’s what I hear from most of my clients when I come to help them straighten out all their technology and figure out how they can best utilize it.

Most of us start the day looking at our phones. We check our email or social media and this immediately puts us in a state of reaction. 

We start reacting to other people’s needs on us at the beginning of the day, trying to figure out how we can put out that fire, reschedule our day to accommodate someone, or we’re mindlessly flicking through our friends’ lives.

The problem with this is if we are reacting to everything, we usually are not being proactive in planning what WE want our day to look like. Our months, our years, our life.