Asking the Right Questions [Weekend WRAP 90]

Published about 1 year agoย โ€ขย 3 min read

Hey Reader, a quick reminder that last week I started my own referral program. Check it out after you've read this weekend's newsletter. Earn cool stuff like a custom sticker, Baronfig notebook, and more!

I also want to say thanks to Inside Tracker for sponsoring the next two editions of the Weekend WRAP. Inside Tracker is the top biological analysis service that provides you with a clear picture of what's going on inside your body. Learn more below and use MATTRAGLAND to save 20%.

๐Ÿ’ก One Big Idea: Generalist GPT

ChatGPT and AI in general has become an unintentional theme of several emails this season. I've written about how AI can't replace experiences or unique personalities, and how I've used it for generating summaries from my book highlights.

But one use I haven't explored much is ChatGPT as a teacher ๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿซ

Until this week. Let's set the scene ๐Ÿ“ธ

I have a spreadsheet of 70,000 emails that need to be warmed up for a newsletter. But the recommended warmup segment size is 5,000. Well that sounds like a helluva lotta manual effort that Excel/GSheets would be great for.

Problem is, I don't know spreadsheets that well. Basics? Sure. But not this stuff.

But ChatGPT does. So I asked...

And of course it knew. Because it's perfect for this stuff.

After I assigned all 70,000 rows to a random group number between 1-14, I needed to filter the list to those specific groups so I could export individually.

Again, it knew right away.

But wait. I messed up. I had different names for those rows and sheets. So I just told ChatGPT what I named those rows and asked for help. No problem!

After a couple more requests I had exactly what I was looking for. I recorded a video explaining the process and sent it to my team to finish the other 12 sheets. I went from zero to hero in less than an hour.

Learning how to learn

I think this is a really big deal. A core skill of the next 5-10 years will be the ability to have enough contextual knowledge to ask questions and solve problems that you know just a little about.

I didn't know how to write these formulas in Excel, but I knew enough to ask the right questions and then implement the answers properly. And then I knew enough about how I did what I did to explain it to another person.

At the core of this experience I realized that I have developed the skill of learning how to learn. ChatGPT and other AI tools have simply accelerated the learning curve of what you can do in less than an hour... if you know the right questions to ask.

But that's another topic for another edition of the WRAP.

๐Ÿ“น Video to Watch: How the Bullet Journal Creator Uses Roam Researchโ€‹

My friend Tiago Forte recently interviewed my other friend Ryder Carrol, creator of the Bullet Journal. They discussed personal knowledge management, Ryder's Second Brain map, and how he uses Roam Research and other digital tools in collaboration with the Bullet Journal practice.

video previewโ€‹

๐Ÿ“ฐ One Article Playbook I Read: The Modern Work Methodโ€‹

I'm working my way through Alamanc's Modern Work Method for remote teams. With Automatic Evergreen (my agency) comprising 10 team members now โ€” effective work methods are key. A few that I have implemented that are proving to be successful:

  1. Structure over improvisation.
  2. Prioritize tested results over opinions.โ€‹
  3. Document everything: processes, structures, decisions.
  4. Share learnings cross-functionally so everyone benefits.โ€‹
  5. Hold retros to review what went well and what to change next time.

The playbook is robust, so don't think you have to take it all down in a single sitting. Review the outline and pick out the first section that catches your eye. For me, it was Structured Knowledge.

Your Path to Living Healthier

My personal health has always been a top priority for me. Good clean food, consistent workouts, lots of water and sunshine are great ways to stay healthy and energetic for all life throws at me.

Inside Tracker takes that to the next level though. Their science-backed approach will analyze your blood, DNA, and fitness trackers to provide you with personalized recommendations that are specifically tailored to your needs. From optimizing food choices and supplement intake, to providing ways to improve sleep and reduce stress levels - InsideTracker has you covered.

I am not a doctor and this is not health or medical advice. You should talk to a doctor before trying a service like Inside Tracker. Read all disclaimers and privacy policies here and here.

Have a great weekend,

Matt Ragland

p.s. if you have a (literal) minute to share feedback, click here.

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