Work the Way You Want, be Productive Anywhere and Design Your #NoOffice Lifestyle

Hello, I'm Michael Sliwinski I run a productivity company, record a weekly podcast, write on this blog, and publish books to help modern knowledge workers like you get more done and have a more organized (and passionate) life.

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Learn more about #NoOffice: Subscribe to my newsletter and get you my latest book for FREE as a thank-you: "No Office Apps: How the Nozbe team uses modern technologies to communicate better and get more done.".

Frequently Asked Questions:

Which books do you read and recommend?

Thanks to switching from paper books to audiobooks back in 2010 I started absorbing around 30 books per year. Here's the complete and up-to date list of the books I've read. Want my recommendations? Check out my reviews of these books on this blog or better yet, subscribe my weekly podcast where I discuss them with my buddy Radek.

Which apps do you use every day?

I use Nozbe (duh!). But that's not all. As my main computers are iPad, iPhone (Plus size) and an iMac, there are lots of apps I use. If you want to know which ones we with my team to get our work done, check out my latest book: "No Office Apps".

What do you do after work? Sports? Family? Hobbies?

I love what I do so it doesn't feel like work. But apart from that I try to remain fit, especially as I lost weight thanks to "slow carb diet" and started running triathlons (I do 3-4 olympic distance a year: 1500m swim, 40km bike and 10km run). And my family keeps me busy: I have three daughters and a wife - lots of women in the house :-)

Do you do interviews?

Oh yes. I love interviews, here's a list of my recent appearances on podcasts and other sites. I've also interviewed some really cool people for the Productive! Magazine. I sometimes speak on conferences. Here's how to contact me.

What are you doing now?

Just check my Twitter: @MSliwinski or my up-to-date NOW page. To be in touch with me subscribe to my mailing list. Thanks!

My recent blog posts:

Wednesday, October 18

🎧 The Podcast #115 - Triathlons 🏊‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🏃‍♂️💨

Last week on The Podcast we discussed triathlons and why I’m doing them and why I think more people should try them (my co-host included!). After celebrating a successful 10th triathlon I have a few thoughts on all this:

The Podcast - 115 - Triathlons 🏊‍♂️🚴🏻‍♂️🏃‍♂️💨

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 37 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Thursday, October 5

🎧 The Podcast #114 - Panamá

This week on The Podcast we discuss Radek’s trip to Panama and minimalist packing for a week or more (which is useful for my upcoming Nozbe Reunion trip). Check it out, we’re back stronger than ever :-)

The Podcast - 114 - Panamá

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 54 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Wednesday, September 27

🎧 The Podcast #113 - Don’t be creepy

This week on The Podcast we discuss the responsibility of software makers - of people writing the apps that you’re using - of us developing Nozbe and taking care of your personal data... important subject! Let us know what you think:

The Podcast - 113 - Don’t be creepy

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 36 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Wednesday, September 20

🎧 The Podcast #112 - The Pursuit of Essentialism

This week on The Podcast we discuss one of my favorite books of all time - Essentialism by Greg McKeown (Amazon|Audible - which I read 3 times! I recently posted my highlights from this book and it prompted us to talk about it on the show - enjoy!

The Podcast - 112 - The Pursuit of Essentialism

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 41 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Monday, September 18

My iPadOnly podcast recording set – how to travel & record podcasts with great quality and minimum equipment

Recently, I posted the photo below on Instagram and some folks congratulated me on my setup, asking me how I manage to record podcasts while on the road, being iPadOnly, using only my iPhone and iPad. It’s a frequent problem, especially during vacation, when it can be difficult to coordinate travel plans with the podcast schedule, but we still want to record it regularly. In the last two years we hardly ever missed a week (we did miss last two weeks, sorry!) thanks to this setup:

My podcast recording set

Read below for my detailed setup:

Thursday, September 14

🎧 The Podcast #111 - Death to paper

This week on The Podcast we discuss how I use Evernote and have been using for the last 9 years. Why it really is my external brain and how it lets me be completely paperless. Over 13,000 notes and counting...

The Podcast - 111 - Death to paper

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 45 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Thursday, September 7

🎧 The Podcast #110 - Non-Violent Communication

This week on The Podcast we get back to discussing books, this time it’s all about effective communication, emotions and empathy and changing the vocabulary to explain to others how you’d like your needs met. It’s Non-Violent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg (Amazon|Audible). Sorry for the two-week hiatus - we’re restoring our weekly schedule now! Thanks for listening and let us know how you liked this book!

The Podcast - 110 - Non-Violent Communication

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 44 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Thursday, August 31

📖 My highlights from Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism - the disciplined pursuit of less... but better - how to become an essentialist?

I’ve first written about this book over two years ago as I’ve listened to it twice since then and now I’ve read it in a physical form at the beginning of this year just after I’ve interviewed the author for last issue of the Productive! Magazine. I’ve highlighted many parts of the book and decided to write them down and share them with you all. Hope you’ll add your favorite bits and pieces in the comments - and if you haven’t read the book yet, get it from Audible or Amazon or anyplace else. Enjoy my essential highlights:

My highlights from Greg McKeown’s book Essentialism - the disciplined pursuit of less... but better - how to become an essentialist?

Essentialism is a pursuit of a life when you’re doing less, but better

The book starts with a great quote on productivity:

Essentialism is not about how to get more things done, it’s about how to get the right things done. It’s about the wisest possible investment of your time.

The author quotes one of the most famous designers ever, Dieter Rams who would always say that with his designs he’s trying to achieve a goal of “Weniger aber besser” - which translated from German exactly means: “less but better”.

Essentialism is a disciplined pursuit because it’s a systematic approach for determining where our highest point of contribution lies. The author argues that by investing in fewer things we have the satisfying experience of making significant progress in the things that mater most.

Essentialism means living by design not by default.

Which basically means that it’s up to you to decide what you want to do with your time on this planet - because as always: “If you don't prioritize your life, someone else will.”

"The idea is to live a life true to yourself not the life others expect from you"

Here’s more:

Wednesday, August 30

💡 Essential iPad Pro accessories for an #iPadOnly life

As I do most of my work on the iPad (and wrote an #iPadOnly book all about it), people keep asking me a few questions every now and then: Can the iPad Pro be really used for work? or How should I set up my new iPad Pro? or Why switching to iPad might make sense for me? or Which apps do you use on your iPad Pro? or... Which iPad Pro accessories are most essential for you? - and that’s the question I’d like to answer with this short article:

Essential iPad Pro accessories for an #iPadOnly life

iPad Pro 10.5" with Smart Keyboard Cover

Over my years of testing iPads I’ve had several iPad keyboards - from Logitech to Zagg but what I really like about the default Apple’s Smart Keyboard Cover is the fact that it’s barely there - it’s very thin and doesn’t require charging or Bluetooth connection - and it’s with me all the time and just like a typical Smart Cover - protects my screen. And yes, I prefer the smaller iPad 10.5" over the big one.

Apple Pencil with pencil holder glued to the iPad

I love Apple Pencil and how it lets me just draw on the iPad without any friction or lag. It’s really cool. And with iOS11 the annotation functions are even better - I’ve switched to iOS11 "Files" app to store and markup my PDFs and "Notes" app to draw handwritten notes. I still use Evernote for all the other notes.

I have the Apple Pencil attached with Leuchtturm1917 Pen Loop and thanks to this solution my Apple Pencil is always with me. The only downside is that when the pencil is so close to the iPad, it drains the battery quickly... and there’s no on/off switch on the pencil...

Messenger Bag with Powerbank and AirPods inside

I still use the same Messenger Bag which I bought when I was in Japan - you can see it in this video and I have a big Powerbank inside with a short 4-inch (10 cm) Lightning cable in case I run out of juice at some point during the day.

And yes, I have my AirPods with me at all times - they work with both my iPhone and iPad.

Need to know more about my iPad gadgets - this old video is still pretty much relevant

Question: Which gadgets do you use with your iPad or iPhone?

Sent from my iPhone 7 Plus

Thursday, August 24

🎧 The Podcast #109 - Workflow to the rescue

This week on The Podcast we discuss more simplifications and automations on the iPad and the Mac. We share our workflows and hacks help us automate as many things as possible on our devices. You really want to listen and take notes (and browse our show notes):

The Podcast - 109 - Workflow to the rescue

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 49 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Wednesday, August 9

🎧 The Podcast #108 - iPad Consultations

This week on The Podcast we’re doing a kinda follow up to episode 102 discuss my co-host’s new #iPadOnly life life and he has a bunch of questions for me - I’m his “iPad Mentor” today - together we figure out a few workarounds that you might find really helpful:

The Podcast - 108 - iPad Consultations

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 35 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Monday, August 7

iPadOnly on 10.5” – is the new iPad Pro with iOS11 finally a serious setup for work?

While the title of this article might be phrased as a question, those who know me already know my answer, which is: “Of course, the iPad is already being used for work!” I’m unique that way because I’ve been using my iPad for work for more than five years now – since iOS6... Meanwhile, many people still don’t consider the iPad to be a “serious” machine for work. This article is dedicated to them.

Serious setup for work

Note: The following article appeared first in the July '17 issue of [iMagazine][iMagazine] - the leading lifestyle magazine for Apple enthusiasts in Poland. I'm a regular contributor and write my monthly productivity column there.

The new iPad Pro and iOS11

A few weeks ago at WWDC, Apple revealed its new 10.5” iPad Pro and previewed iOS11 which will be released to the general public in the fall. Since I’ve been following rumors for some time, eagerly waiting to get my hands on the new iPad, I ordered it on the day of its launch, and when it finally arrived I immediately installed the pre-release version of iOS11 (beta 2), and… I jumped into the future! Read on to check out how this combo really works...

Wednesday, August 2

🎧 The Podcast #107 - Simplify Everything

This week on The Podcast we continue our discussion on habits - this time giving you simple tips and tricks how to simplify our systems and ways we work and live. How (and what) to question in order to find more margin and space for our creative time:

The Podcast - 107 - Simplify Everything

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 45 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.

Monday, July 31

💡 Running, listening to books, podcasts and taking notes with Apple Watch

People on Twitter and listeners to The Podcast keep asking me how I use the Apple Watch for running. Especially that I like to listen to podcasts or audiobooks while doing sports. I also take notes directly on the Apple Watch, here’s how:

Running, listening to books, podcasts and taking notes with Apple Watch

Running with Apple Watch

I use Runkeeper app to track my running and I always launch it directly from my Apple Watch. This way I can track my heart rate, especially now that I’m preparing to break the 45-minute barrier on a 10k run.

Listening to Podcasts

Update August 2017: Marco, the Overcast founder removed this feature from the app so I can’t listen to podcast directly from the watch anymore... I have to carry my iPhone again for that. Shame...

This used to work before the update above:

I use Overcast: Podcast Player to listen to my podcasts and just recently this app lets me upload a podcast episode to the watch directly. I usually upload an episode of ATP directly to watch and just take my Bluetooth headsets - Mpow Enchanter with me and I leave my iPhone 7 Plus at home! Isn’t that cool!?

Listening to Audiobooks

I use Audible to listen to audiobooks - check out my list of books I read and recommend - and unfortunately I can’t upload a book to the watch so I have to carry my iPhone with me when I want to listen to a book.

Taking notes on the Apple Watch

I created a workflow - Add to Book Notes that lets me just tap on Workflow app and tap again to start talking to my watch to dictate notes. This then is being transcribed and added to my text file called "book.txt" in my Dropbox folder. It’s really neat - this way I can add an important note even in the middle of my run!

I love my Apple Watch!

The latest Apple Watch Series 2 Nike lets me run with it, swim and bike with it... and listen to podcasts and even take notes while listening to audiobooks... and the battery holds almost two full days... and takes only a short while to recharge.

Hope this was useful - if you have any questions, ask them below or ping me on Twitter - thanks!

Question: How do you use your Apple Watch for sports and other things?

Sent from my iPhone 7 Plus

Thursday, July 27

🎧 The Podcast #106 - Combined Twitter & Instagram moment

This week on The Podcast we continue our discussion about Twitter addictions and improving our focused work time. We've made some improvements and have Pro tips to share so make sure to check it out!

The Podcast - 106 - Combined Twitter & Instagram moment

Listen to this week's episode:

Subscribe to The Podcast in iTunes | Subscribe on YouTube | Get RSS

Time: ~ 52 minutes

If you rate us on iTunes, we might give you a shout-out on air! Thanks! :-)

And if you're new here:

The Podcast is a weekly podcast chat with Radek (VP Apple Technologies at Nozbe) and yours truly (CEO at Nozbe) about productivity, business, books, and whatever else comes to mind... - if you liked this episode, make sure to check out past episodes.