How To Launch An App Automatically When You Connect Your Scanner

Let Keyboard Maestro get your Mac ready on cue.

I love my ScanSnap scanner. Pop it open, push the blue button, and the page appears as a PDF on my Desktop.

Most of the time.

If the companion app isn’t running for some reason, it takes about 30 seconds of troubleshooting to diagnose the problem and start scanning. That’s 30 seconds of precious time and brainpower I shouldn’t have to spend. Besides, 30 seconds is a significant percentage of the two-minute rule.

So I did what I like to do and solved the problem so it stays solved: I figured out how to automatically launch ScanSnap Manager when I turn the scanner on.

It’s trivial and I could solve the problem with the tools I already use. The app is ready when I need it and stays out of the way when I don’t. It takes the friction and cognitive overhead to about zero.

Photo courtesy of © Adobe Stock / Piotr Adamowicz

Why Are We So Bad About Reaching our Goals?

These common mindsets can give fear the fuel it needs to hold us back.

It happens every year.

We start off strong, but fade. We start out excited, but fizzle. We work hard in January, but 80% of the goals we set are forgotten by February.

That number eventually climbs to 92%. Out of every hundred goals we set, only eight of them actually happen. The rest are cast aside, abandoned, waiting to discourage us the next time we set a goal.

Why does it happen? There’s probably a limiting belief, old habit, or bad strategy in play that we’re not aware of. The specific reason can be different for each goal and can change over the course of a goal.

Here are some of the most common reasons we don’t reach the goals we set.

Photo courtesy of © Adobe Stock / Jumbo2010

How to Conquer the Hidden Claims On Your Year

Stake a claim for your time before someone else does.

When the American West was settled, whoever got there first established a claim on the land. It was theirs. They got to say how it was used.

Your time follows this same law of homesteading. Whatever gets put on our calendar first becomes the defacto standard for what we’re “supposed” to be doing with that time.

This is why it’s important to put your priorities on the calendar first. We commonly think of this when we’re scheduling our day or our week, simply because that’s the kind of scheduling we most commonly do.

Scheduling your year can have an even more profound effect.

Photo courtesy of © Adobe Stock / Drobot Dean

Have You Found Your Groove or Are You Stuck in a Rut?

How two competing needs help you grow.

My wife and I are methodically working our way through the menu at our favorite pizza place. Some of their creations are better than others, but even the “bad” ones are pretty doggone good.

Each time we order, we order two kinds: a favorite we love and a new one we haven’t tried before. (Yes, we have a checklist.) This way, we’re going to enjoy our meal(s) no matter how the new pizza turns out. If it’s a little less than we were hoping for, we still have a really good pizza to enjoy with it. If it’s absolutely incredible, we have another favorite.

We’re cheating at the explore/exploit problem a little bit, but life doesn’t have to be either-or. It can be and. And this is a good way we’ve found to maximize our pizza enjoyment. We get the benefits of exploiting a favorite pizza while still exploring new pizzas.

Two of our basic human needs are the need for Safety and Security and the need for Variety. Those two needs alone will often pull us in different directions. That’s not a bad thing.

Photo courtesy of © Adobe Stock / Merpics

How to Reach Your Goals using OmniFocus

Make sure each one has a clear next action.

Every time you get in the car, you have a destination in mind. You’re going to work. You’re taking the kids to school. You’re going to the grocery store, the library, and the dry cleaner’s.

Even if you’re heading out for the sheer joy of hearing your Maserati purr on the open road, you have a specific destination in mind. You’re heading someplace.

Goals shouldn’t be any more intimidating than popping out for a gallon of milk. More exciting, yes. And they’ll probably take a little more planning than grabbing your keys and wallet and heading out the door.

At some point, you need to switch from thinking about the goal to doing something about it. Here’s how to set up OmniFocus to you moving forward.

Photo courtesy of © Adobe Stock / mills21