Week 43, Year 2018 — Preempting Getting Sick

Photo: Chasing the sunrise before a workshop. It was a pseudo-run, with quite a few pauses to take photos and checking the map to figure out how to get out of dead-ends.

Preempting getting sick

Between field research, workshop facilitation and conferences, I get to travel for work often. I love it but it’s incredibly easy to get sick and worse, for that sickness to drag on.

In the past few years I’ve been trying to be more consistent about my efforts to avoid catching anything, as well as chasing away any hint of oncoming sickness. This week I was in four different cities and am pretty happy with how I managed that self-care part. Proven tricks:

  • Pack running shoes and use Strava to find safe routes to explore the neighborhood. I don’t actually like running but I know that if I can manage at least one run during a trip, I’ll feel much better.
  • Insist on eating well and at the right time. No skipping breakfast, no midnight kebabs, no candy bars from the machine etc.
  • Carry snacks and a thermos. A bag of trail mix saved me when traveling with people who have lower metabolism than me. The thermos is for hot drinks. Hot drinks have magical powers.
  • Take a soak in the bath whenever there’s a bath tub. This is like a hot drink except it works outside-in. A long soak the night before a 6am flight made my 3hrs sleep feel like 7.5hrs… 🙄

Starting to plan community events for the winter

I’ll be in Tokyo and Singapore for five weeks around New Years for my usual mix of holiday and work. There are a couple of events that I’d like to organize, and it was time for the planning to start!

Johnny Linnert and I will run 1–2 events for our new researcher community in Tokyo — to be announced soon — and I’m dreaming of a public speaking workshop for the Ride The Lightning community that I’d also aim to run in Singapore if I can find a host organization.

Tomomi Sasaki on Twitter

We had a fantastic #WhatisResearchOps workshop in Tokyo, exploring #ResearchOps as one way to scale the impact of #userresearch. Thanks so much to partner in crime @JohnnyLinnert, and to everyone who came out. Loooved all the exchange. Wow💃

The researcher community idea was inspired by the success of the ResearchOps workshop that we ran this summer.

Improving tooling for AQ

Thoughtfully chosen tools, introduced with the right level of processes, are critical to maintaining a well-oiled team. It’s been awhile since there was a new one important enough to add to our company toolkit but this week I worked on:

  • Did a walk-through of a recent research project that used Dovetail, which I’m aiming to establish as our tool of choice for collaborative note-taking and analysis.
  • Organized our scattered paid and expired trial accounts for a proper team account on Mural, which is a really versatile tool that I think we can get more use out of.
  • Introduced a way to create blueprint posters with printed out stickies.