At Freedom, we love our users – not just because they use our product, but because they’re cool – cool people working on cool stuff. Academy Award-nominated screenwriters, bestselling authors, editors, journalists, developers, illustrators, designers, academics, coaches, podcast hosts, comic book writers, explorers, and entrepreneurs – the Freedom community is packed with curious, creative, and passionate go-getters. We love to share their stories, advice, and process because how better to learn about productivity than from the productive?
Meet Brian Condenanza.
Brian Condenanza is a Freedom user, Argentinian entrepreneur, and currently the CTO at Bidao, a decentralized finance startup.
Last year, Brian gave a TEDx talk in Switzerland about the upcoming Golden Age of blockchain technology & the use of cryptocurrencies and crypto assets and the possible uses and applications of this technology, that currently has over 100,000 views on YouTube, making it one of the most watched TEDx talks on the topic.
Brian has participated of the Youth Assembly at the United Nations Headquarters in NYC, with the role of Delegate of his native country Argentina, where he discussed diverse topics, ranging from sustainable development to disruptive technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
However, Brian started his career in a different field, ecommerce & viral marketing, where he took FluoShoes, a LED shoes company he founded in 2015, to over 150,000 followers on social media and had their products shared by celebs and influential media outlets all around the world.
So with all of that under his belt, we sat down with him this week to learn a little more about how he finds focus to do the work that matters in our age of distraction.
How did you get into blockchain and cryptocurrency as a career?
I used to read a lot about the topic when it wasn’t wildly popular and share my thoughts on Twitter. That’s how some of the companies that I ended up working for found me, and then just good word of mouth from previous companies and business partners.
At what point did you realize that tech was taking a toll on your productivity, time, and relationships? When did you know that you had to do something about it?
I think that especially as someone who works with technology, many apps get overwhelming. I am not a fan of excessive digital communication and I think it is one thing that really ends up affecting our relationships. Streaks on Snapchat, for example, end up promoting this and I just don’t like this kind of constant, gamified communication. As someone that works with a phone and a computer for hours every day, I much prefer having a face-to-face conversation.
I have mostly seen the toll that this takes on others and that’s why I try to limit this kind of digital interaction.
As someone with many roles, how do you prioritize what gets your time and attention each day?
I try to focus on things that could have the biggest impact, but I still struggle with prioritizing at times. At some point you have to realize that no matter how good you are at something, every time you decide to give time to something, it takes time from something else. I am not a fan of self-optimizing constantly.
Do you have a routine or ritual that helps to get into a productive flow?
Not really, I think it is just natural for me. If I don’t get much done I usually feel like I am missing out on something. My dad is the hardest working man I know and so he always set a good example for me at home.
How do you optimize your environment for productivity and focus?
I usually like working while drinking coffee and listening to music. Not any particular genre, it changes all the time. Freedom is so important in my schedule as there are many times that I really need to focus on things that require more of my attention and no distractions. I usually complement it with the Pomodoro technique.
What is the most difficult or challenging aspect about your work or working process? Do you have any strategies that you use to help overcome these challenges?
I think it is very demanding as I have business partners all over the world and so I get phone calls at weird times of the night. Honestly, I am just learning to get better at those things. Like I’ve said, sometimes you just can’t optimize. Some things are just hard.
What resources or tools do you use daily and have found most beneficial to your working process?
I think the phone is the best tool and probably the only thing I would need. I am pretty sure I could do most things just out of my phone. Other than a Pomodoro timer & Freedom, I try to not use many apps.
What projects are you currently most excited about?
I am the CTO of Bidao, a decentralized finance company that is doing really well and I am excited to see how it goes. I am very thankful to work with such an experienced team, I learn new things every day.
What do you do outside of your work routine that helps you stay healthy and productive?
I have horrible sleeping habits, and my eating habits are pretty bad as well. But I have been very lucky to have good health, so I can’t complain. I do pray and read the Bible every day, that is probably one of the only habits I do daily.