In the year 2000, I aced the written portion of my college entrance exams. Then I ignored the result, shrugged my shoulders, and plowed my way toward a degree in engineering anyway.

It turns out I’m not very good at math.

At the University of Wisconsin, I worked at a newspaper, majored in journalism, and graduated with honors in 2005. But I missed the signs again, pursuing design and web development instead of writing.

Only in 2014, after years of incidental writing experience, did I recognize my superpower. My teammates noticed too, telling me: “Hey, you’re pretty good at this.” I guess they’re right. I am pretty good at writing. And the best part is, I really really like doing it.

Since then, I’ve written two books and dozens of articles. I’ve done copywriting, ghostwriting, editing, and content strategy. My best work blends personal experience with scientific research and reader anecdotes to illuminate surprising truths, share proven advice, and encourage people to rethink the ways they spend their time.

Here are some of my favorite examples.


Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day

Contains almost everything I know about slowing down, finding focus, and making time in daily life. You can read Make Time in print or ebook format, or listen to Jake and I read it as an audiobook!


Sprint: How to Solve Big Problems and Test New Ideas in Just Five Days

Sprint is not just about the 5-day Design Sprint method that I helped develop at GV. It’s about replacing the crazy defaults of modern work with a process that’s focused, face-to-face, and thoughtful.

The Most Effective Way to Manage Your Inbox Is Also the Easiest

Medium, February 2020

Use a Calendar to Make Every Day Your Ideal Day

Medium, August 2019

What Quitting My Job to Live on a Sailboat Taught Me About Fulfillment

Medium, February 2019

Feeling Busy and Distracted? It’s Not Your Fault

Make Time, February 2019

It’s More Important Than Ever to Ignore the News

Make Time, August 2018

Notifications Suck, But Infinity Pools Are a Really Big Problem

Make Time, January 2017

Sprints Are the Secret to Getting More Done

Harvard Business Review, March 2016

One Big Thing

Make Time, March 2016

How I Became a Morning Person

Medium, December 2015

Not Every Product Needs to be Beautiful

WIRED Magazine, May 2015

Understanding Entrepreneurial Design

Wall Street Journal, February 2014

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