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September 04, 2010


Jose Antonio Espinosa

I´m agree, and its not very easy to find time, but my best ideas appear in the morning, before to take the breakfast, I usually take a walk around the empty streets near to my house, but I never write..., following Mr Cleese, I will write everything to leave my mind work.

For other side, Mr Reynolds, congratulations for your book Ptresentation Zen, I just read and change my way to do so much things.

Thanks a lot from Spain

Jose Antonio

Christian gross

Nobody laughed at his jokes....


More important than an oasis may be to clear ones mind in a way of judging the importance of tasks and just writing a to-do list. Whatever occupies your mind which is not too important should be somewhere not in your brain.

BTW: It's a pity you didn't discuss Mr Cleeses presentation style. I'd be interested in that.

Christopher Gronlund

Thanks for sharing this. Like Graphity above, I'm interested in your thoughts about Cleese's presentation style, too.

I'm very lucky to be married to somebody who is fine when I say, "I'm going to hole up in the office and write for four hours."

So many friends insist they don't have time to pursue creative things, but many have time to watch hours of TV or play videogames for hours. And there's nothing wrong with that if it's your thing.

But most people have time, even if it's getting away from the desk and jotting ideas down during lunch breaks during the week, and an hour or two on the weekend.

Thanks for always posting great stuff; I'll have to check out Your Brain at Work.


Shame the audience seemed to be brain-dead! His best point was about people who are not good at doing what they do having a blind spot about not being good at it; as he says, this explains a lot about life.
To create your own 'tortoise enclosure' (on your [Mac] laptop), try out Ommwriter with headphones - it can take you to a different place and if you shut down Skype and your email client, without interruption.


I was there and it was a good presentation.
It's a shame people didn't laugh with his jokes, I sure did.

He presented at a conference where a lot of overly serious stiff businessmen attended. The kind of people that are anything but creative and think they will become innovators by listening to presentations. I must have been one of the youngest attendees.

I remember an anecdote Cleese made about Tomas Edison who used to fall asleep while holding a metal ball in one hand above a platter. Genius idea.

The whole conference had great speakers. Here are the original videos and reports: http://www.flandersdc.be/view/nl/6432289-Keynote+sessions.html


Paul H. Burton

Ironically, Mr. Cleese's notion of Boundaries of Space and Boundaries of Time put me in mind of my daily run. I find that all my "ideas" tend to flood into my brain at the very end of the run. It's like my unconcious mind knows that it's "running" out of time ... for today!

Tao Tao

That's probably why I'm the most creative under the shower.

Mike Byrne

Wonderful, but Mr. Cleese is really understating the value of resting on a problem. I use this process intentionally for big problems or big projects.

Often, when required to collect massive amounts of information, I'll collect and consume for days and then walk away for a least a day, sometimes 2 or 3 days.

Then I sit down and start writing, sketching, mind mapping and outlining. This process has reduced my actual work hours on projects and problems by 50-75%.

Thanks for the video Garr.


Mr. Cleese's final point about people who are incompetent at something lacking the skills required to recognize their own incompetence is called the Dunning-Kruger Effect. There is an inverse relationship between real competence and perceived competence. I find this kind of funny, and I liked Mr. Cleese's spin on it. It does explain a lot.

Interesting video. Thanks Garr. Your site and your books have helped me to greatly improve my teaching.

Shannon Scott

Very simple and very true. Boundaries around space and time are critical.

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