My Experiment With A Daily Self Improvement Journal
There are a lot of people who suggest journaling as a way to improve your life and remember things. I always wanted to try it but I figured it would be aimless to write down random thoughts. I wanted there to be a purpose and a desired outcome.
You can also see as I write in the outcomes over time on how it helped (or didn’t help) me for each entry.
Here are the rules I made up.
- Each day you should have an alarm to write in the journal. If you can’t write in it when the alarm goes off, you either snooze the alarm, or reset it.
- Write in the journal even if you don’t want to. There are a lot of studies that show if you fail at something because you gave up or got lazy, this could affect your future tasks. To solve this, set a reasonable date for which you can decide whether you want to continue. When that date arrives, you can make a conscious decision whether to continue or not.
- Each thing you enter into your self improvement journal should be about integrating knowledge from yourself, your studies, or other people who have techniques proven to have results in improvement. If you don’t have one of those it’s ok to make it up. You’d be surprised at what you’ll discover when you even try random improvement habits.
- You can write multiple ones each day.
- I suggest doing it for a month at the least, and assessing whether or not you want to do it after 3 months.
- It shouldn’t take you more than 5 minutes to enter these new habits.
- Yes, it’s ok to research online if you run out of your own material.
Ok, let’s go!
Self Improvement Journal
1.1 research and buy standup desk, more standing should mean healthier, more calories burned, more vigor, easy to do, benefits every day
- status: recommended
- result: bought one and it arrived kinda late. I started to use it and I love it, the height is nice but my knee injury started hurting, need to strengthen and keep trying.
1.3 making a mental note to: not accept meeting with people without very specific goals … leads to a bunch of time lost on discussing non related issues.
- status: highly recommended
- result: very frankly asked people who were requesting meetings what the objective was before meeting. nobody seemed to hate it. people who didn’t have a clear objective for a meeting were forced to either have one or get a solid no from me.
2.1 try not to spend more than 10 minutes in bed after waking up. Too much time is wasted either looking at messages... Should start to get ready or get in the shower. I heard this works in some articles online.
- status: recommended
- result: gave me the feeling like i was being more productive. also allowed me to de-emphasize time on things that you can only do from the bed on a cell phone, which aren’t the most impactful things
2.3 be very careful about who you attend events with, basically choose people who will augment the social experience or help make connections. choose to go alone if you feel the person will be a burden.
- status: recommended
- result: i think i have dodged a few bullets attending conferences with people who might have made it harder for me to be effective. for example E3.
2.4 try to attend more social events, schedule them and try to meet more people who can bring value and provide company. being along all the time can kill you, let’s not die.
- status: inconclusive
- result: failure. i wasn’t able to fulfill this goal, but will make a mental note. i tried but immediately lost track and kept prioritizing work over socializing.
2.5 don’t play with phone or text when in a bind for time. Always do this and always hate myself when I do it and it frequently makes me late. Doing it now for example.
- result: highly recommended
- result: i am now better able to question what i’m doing on my phone as a result of this habit. it doesn’t work just in a bind but also at random times in the day. if you think about it, life is always in a bind for time.
2.6 be more emotionally generous to my friends. Try to find out how I can be genuinely happy for them, rather than envious or just not supportive.
- status: moderately recommended
- result: i actually realized i am not very generous emotionally to my friends and i’ve just been working more on identifying how huge the problem actually is. it’s huge. i have done a few experiments on being more magnanimous and generous but most of them seem too controlled. i have made some improvements, but i still am not able to genuinely be happy for some people.
2.7 keep a specific journal daily on a project I want to make progress on specifically. This will make it more obvious if the progress is good, also put things into perspective whether or not I’m taking on too many projects or focusing consistently. This could also be a great log to have in the future if something works out I’ll have a great record.
- status: highly recommended
- result: i think i’m better able to focus on a project and see what the real value is that i’m bringing. it’s great, in hindsight, to see where your effort is going. for example, if you’re creating too many documents for project progress, it means you are working on too many things, and this makes it very obvious.
- suggestions: try not to make too many documents. also, even if you don’t want to make a note, trust me, there will be days where you won’t want to, you should still do it. set a date when you want to stop. it’s better to stop at a date you make up rather than stopping because of laziness or unwillingness… that’s a truly bad habit.
2.8 do a little bit of research on clothes, and hopefully buy some. try to be more fashion conscious. i usually feel better wearing clothes that aren’t 4 or 5 years old, also it’s either true that people like me more when i’m better dressed, or i believe that, so i should do it.
- bought a radiohead shirt, maybe doesn’t count but i like them and want to support, also radiohead is a big part about me, so maybe others will connect with me about this shared interest
- met with a personal stylist at Trunk Club’s main office in Culver city.
- ordered more clothes and shoes on amazon.
2.9 add more essential life tasks to the calendar. this will make sure those annoying things will get done and not overdue.
- car maintenance
- hair cuts
- meetings with friends
- bill payments
2.10 sitting down to read or listen to audio books and take thorough notes. already did this before with Elon Musk’s biography and it was very successful (http://www.topchart.io/lists/elon-musk-tesla-spacex-and-the-quest-for-a-fantastic-future-book-summary). this as opposed to always listening to books in the car. perhaps i should read fantasy or fiction in the car, but sit down or stand up at the desk when reading science based books where fact memorization and critical thinking should be more focused
2.12 practice minimalism by throwing a lot of things away you don’t use. research some core concepts of minimalism.
couldn’t come up with anything great. night’s not over yet though!
2.13 plan a trip just for pleasure. need to live in a the moment a bit more and decompress.
3.1 delegate more to services like Twinsy (virtual assistants www.twinsy.io)
3.2 start tracking on computer productivity again
- result: reinstalled RescueTime
- got busy with a friend forgot was my improvement was
- tell friends about self improvement journals to see if they want to try
- when in conversations try to win less, think about goals and outcomes more than winning. winning is for cheap ass losers who want to feel good in the moment and destroy any benefits in the future because they are too dumb to see them
was busy with family, baseball games, taking naps, can’t remember what i thought of to improve myself
- give to somebody without expectations when you can. zero expectations isn’t practical, but think about how much it might help them, find a real need.
- send a macbook air to James from Twitter since he said he wants to program but can’t afford a computer
- Try to develop better “home office” habits: since I’m working in home office more frequently now.
- work at the desk more
- clean desk better
- turn the lights on more rather than keeping it dark
- busy few days and very bad at focusing on goals
- get back to the gym on west side, gym 3–4 days a week, sun deck for lunch when can
- start using burner credit cards to feel less stress about purchases
- using privacy.com
- pay for medium premium
- thinking of ways i can turn a lot of the automation i’m doing into a publication
had something but i forgot
- try to connect with people without being too concerned about explaining what i can do for them, try to hear their stories first
- lots of linked in connections where this was the case
- make sure you only give advice for things you’ve tried, proven, or have solid scientific data to back up. bad advice is worse than no advice.
- Meditate on how I can become more knowledgable on very important business terms. this is not just about showing off buzzwords, but being able to understand the financial phenomena has terminology that allows you to quickly understand what it is.
- Try to make time to review this journal so i will be sure i’m accountable for what i’ve set out to do
i guess i was too busy totally couldn’t make it
- don’t feed the trolls
- reach out more, even if it makes you look stupid
- don’t “value signal” too obviously or insincerely
- end meetings early and don’t feel bad about it
- walk into every place like you own it or like you’re a god, what are people gonna do about that?
- make more intros to people who would get along or benefit each other
- result: made many more dozen intros on messenger for crypto and other biz people
- ask others how i can improve more
- figure out some techniques to regularly destress
- schedule me time
- start asking people to do things more during marketing