Location: Denver, CO
Current gig: Systems Engineer
Current mobile device: HTC Glacier
Current computer: Custom-built gaming tower, cheap laptop, and something at work I am probably not allowed to talk about
One word that best describes how you work: Accurately
What apps/software/tools can't you live without?
I am sure I could live without them if I had to (I adapt well), but I am currently enjoying the works of Google and Evernote, especially being able to access the same information from multiple devices without carrying anything with me. Yes, I got on that bandwagon kind of late.
What's your workspace like?
I can't show pictures of or describe my work setup, but at home, my husband and I have two desks next to each other with our computers and other things on them. We also have a wall-mounted TV above the monitors so we can watch movies while gaming (or in bed or while cooking or eating) or pulling up reference that we can both look at.
What's your best time-saving trick?
Having a plan and sticking to it. Sure, life gets in the way sometimes and plans fall apart, but I am most efficient when I plan well and don't deviate. For example, if I have errands to run, I will combine everything into as few trips as possible (ideally one), create a route, estimate how long each segment will take me, when I will be done, etc. I do this all in my head, so it's not like I am spending hours in the war room mapping out an attack strategy, but some details do matter in being able to estimate accurately. For example, dropping my kid off at school will take xx minutes, unless I need to talk to his teacher, which would make it yy minutes. Then I round up to the nearest 5 or 0, just in case. Another trick is resting. You can't be productive if you are tired. If you have the option, you are better off taking a break and coming back to a task - it might seem like it will take longer with a break, but you will be more efficient when you return to it and the end product quality will be better.
What's your favorite to-do list manager?
Currently, I use Wunderlist and Google Calendar because both are far from perfect on their own but manage to do everything I need together.
Besides your phone and computer, what gadget can't you live without?
Again, I could live without them (and I have), but a few make life nicer:
-An electric kettle. I like hot tea on a cold morning.
-A mobile scanner. I like digitizing and getting rid of clutter.
-Knitting needles and yarn. Life would be sad if I couldn't knit.
-Drawers. Sounds simple, but it would be very hard for me if stuff was constantly in my visual range. I like things hidden.
What everyday thing are you better at than anyone else?
Organization. I am so organized and detail oriented that everyone lets me know about it multiple times.
What are you currently reading?
I have a few things on the back burner, not really actively reading anything at the moment. My most recent Kindle list has a few self-improvement books (meditation, yoga, healing, how to improve eyesight, etc.) and one novel that sounded interesting, but I haven't gotten very far into it: Saving Mars. I get all my books for free when they have those 90-day marketing things going on, so I don't feel too bad about not reading everything.
What do you listen to while you work?
Silence. I can't concentrate with music. Unfortunately, I can't silence the people around me too.
Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert?
Introvert. I don't have a single extroverted bone in my body. I would be perfectly happy being holed up at home for weeks, if I ever got such a chance.
What's your sleep routine like?
I try to go to sleep by 9 or 10pm and I have to be up at 5am on the weekdays. Weekends are more flexible (I can sleep in until 7-ish when my son wakes me up), but I try to still wake up early so as to not ruin my schedule. Unlike pretty much everyone who has ever answered this question on Lifehacker, I don't have the luxury of waking up when my body feels it's ready to wake up and I am so not an early bird who is up before the alarm goes off. Lately I have been turning it off and sneaking in a bit more sleep (and missing my morning yoga workout).
Fill in the blank: I'd love to see ______ answer these same questions.
Another ordinary person. But looks like this has happened.
What's the best advice you've ever received?
Less of an actual advice and more of a way of life I was brought up in, but I was instilled with honesty from an early age. I have seen plenty of honest people struggle and lying/cheating crooks get ahead in life, but I would rather be honest and unsuccessful than achieve success dishonestly. This value drives everything I do in life and it's always in my mind.