Signal To Noise

Have you ever considered your personal signal-to-noise ratio?


  • Email messages
  • Media
  • Internet sites
  • Twitter, Facebook and other social network feeds
  • Conversation topics of peers
  • Business partners and teammates

Just like with areas for self-improvement, it’s a lot easier to spot the in-bound sources of noise than the ones that I’m creating. What about out-bound noise?

  • What I write
  • What I think
  • What I say
  • What I post
  • What I tweet

In terms of my own noise generation, my two year experiment with inbox zero has trained me to ask:

  • do I need to read this;
  • what does this person need from me; and
  • to trim what hits my inbox.

I sure wish that same discipline came naturally on the larger internet. About the only way I can figure to free myself is rationing.


Three random bits that might help:

The Big Picture does a daily email round up on business reading. Barry embeds the Mauldin letter that I like. If I’m honest with myself then Barry’s email is all I need to stay abreast of the “signal” aspect of the financial media, I don’t even need to read past the headlines.

My last piece prompted Steve to share this video on The Seven Year Itch. I’m going to take a sabbatical in 2013 and will be spending 2012 figuring out how to structure it. If you have resources for me to consider then please send them along.

I was running with my buddy, Scott Jones, and we ended with a question, “what aspects of my life do I take as a given when, in reality, they are self-imposed constructs“.

Working on that last one.

Happy Holidays and I’ll be back in 2012.