A Call to Action: Once! Now!

Bestselling author (and personal superhero) Kevin Kruse laid down some serious wisdom today. I am highlighting Kevin’s message here for two reasons:

  1. By sharing Kevin’s time management notion of “Touch it once” in this post, I’m doing just that – taking a cool idea that can be executed in less than five minutes and acting on it now, rather than adding the idea to an endless pile of “I oughtas.”
  2. By sharing this creative cadence with you, perhaps we can collectively amplify the drum beat of chaos-free productivity.

Here’s Kevin’s “Touch It Once” Cadence Call…

January 24, 2012 0 Comments

10:00am. My hour of power for health is complete, and I’ve finished an hour of focused writing time. Time to open my email accounts…deep breath.

The Google alert on my own name shows that my previously scheduled blog post went live this morning. I hop over to kevinkruse.com to make sure it’s all good and notice a typo (“they” should read “my friend”). Damn, I’ll have to fix that in a few minutes after I scan the rest of my emails.

“No! Touch it once,” my inner voice reminds me. I quickly open WordPress and fix the typo.

Next email is from a freelancer giving me his EIN number so my accountant can prep a 1099. I’ll have to send that along with a note to my accountant later.

“No. Touch it once.” I hit Forward, add a few lines and off it goes.

Next email. New invoice from an advisor. “What?! I wasn’t expecting this,” I think to myself. Double-click the PDF. Yep, it’s right. Damn, I just finished paying bills yesterday. I’ll have to stack this for my next scheduled bill pay session.

“No. Just do it now. Touch it once.” Fortunately he takes credit cards. Open the form, type in my info. Email it back. Good, only 3 minutes.

Next email. I joined the Pennsylvania Society. Somebody needs to know if it’s a non-profit or not. How the heck do I know? Who can I pass this onto? Oh,

“touch it once.” I open a new tab in my browser and go to their page. Quickly scan 2-3 of their pages. No mention of 501(c)3 status. Reply to email: don’t think so.

Hmmm, I should write a blog post someday about how the voice in my head chants “touch it once” as I clear my inbox each morning. Yeah, that would be a good one. Wait!” Open WordPress, start typing the new blog post. Title, “Touch It Once.”

Touch it once. Touch it once. Touch it once. It’s the cadence call of efficiency and productivity.

Whether I’m going through my paper inbox on my desk, or the email inbox on my computer, if the item at hand can be taken care of in less than 5 minutes I do it right then and there. If I can delegate it, I’ll do that. Otherwise I’ll schedule time to complete it.

Touch it once.

[Now clicking the Publish button] 

Check out Kevin’s blog post for more.

Reviewing documents with Adobe Acrobat

Reviewing Documents with Adobe Acrobat

Ever get one of those “please review attached document” emails?  Then you open the attachment and it’s a “pdf” file.  You scratch your head and wonder, “How do I mark up this document? It’s not easy like Word!”  Well the pain is about to end, my friend.  Read on to learn how to review documents using Adobe Acrobat’s commenting and mark-up features. Here’s how:

 1. Save the file you want to review to your desktop

  • Use the File > Save As command to save your file.
  • Name your file by adding an underscore “_” and your initials to the given filename. Example, “filename_as_given_v1_hendrich.”
  • Open the newly-renamed file to begin editing.

2. Make your comments and mark-ups

a. Comments

The commenting tools in Acrobat mimic real-life markup tools such as sticky notes, highlighters and markers. To display the comment and markup tools:

  • Using Acrobat 8.0, choose Comments > Show Comment and Markup Toolbar, or click on the Review & Comment button in the Acrobat toolbar. Figure 1 shows Acrobat 8.0’s layout.


Figure 1: Acrobat 8.0 commenting tools are very much like real-life drawing and markup tools. Except cleaner.

  • Using Acrobat 7.0, it’s the Comment & Markup button. See figure 2 for the layout of the toolbar in Acrobat 7.0, where the markup tools are divided between two toolbars and are accessed separately via Comments > Show Commenting Toolbar and Comments > Show Drawing Markups Toolbar.)

Figure 2 Acrobat 7.0 offers similar features.

The Sticky Note (called ‘Add a Note’ in earlier Acrobat versions) tool is fairly intuitive: Select the tool, click in the PDF and type in the digital note that appears at the edge of the PDF page. You can move notes around the page by clicking on the top outline bar of each individual note.

b. Mark-ups

Use Comments > Text Edits > Indicate Text Edits to mark desired changes in the text. When using the Text Edits tool (figure 3), just pretend that you’re typing corrections, because in reality nothing changes. You’re not actually changing text in the PDF-you’re only indicating where changes should be made. To indicate that you wish to delete text, highlight the text and hit Delete or Backspace. The text is marked with a strikethrough. To replace text, highlight text and type the new text. Acrobat strikes through the text and populates the accompanying note with your new text. To insert text, click the PDF to create an insertion point and type the new text. The added text is displayed in the associated note. The Highlight Text tool lets you call attention to selected text, and the associated note holds your comments. To delete any comment, select the comment’s icon on the PDF and hit the Delete key.

TIP: To see all of your changes, including comments and text edits, select Comments > Show Comments & Markups > Open All Pop-ups:


3. Save your file, then send it off to your editor.

More Help

Look to Acrobat’s Help Guide for more information on using the Comment and Review tools. Acrobat User Community (www.acrobatusers.com) is a good resource on wide range of Acrobat topics.