Having a big project you're always working on helps to keep all the other foundational practices together. A project that will last 1-2 years works best to maximize effort.
Four major kinds of projects that can be rotated are career projects, learning projects, fitness projects, and creating projects.
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If you want to improve your life, you have to be committed and start from the right foundation.
The typical person could make considerable improvements in less than a year.
The productivity system is not just about getting more work done - it's about organising all of your goals and efforts.
When it comes to self-improvement, people can face two problems:
A productivity system, built correctly, solves both of these problems.
Exercise sharpens your mind and improves your mood. It is also entirely under your control.
It is recommended that you start with an exercise schedule that involves exercising at the same time every weekday so that it quickly becomes a habit. If you feel you are too busy, focus on high-intensity workouts for 20-30 minutes at a time.
Working towards any goal is the most important thing you can do. The second most important is to read books about how to do it better.
Every person can read thirty minutes per day during the in-between times in their schedule. You can commit more, but you shouldn't commit less.
Writing expands our memory by giving us a buffer to store thoughts before they fade from our memory. Writing also enables self-reflection. When you write down a long series of thoughts and then read it, you simultaneously articulate an idea and critique it.
Write weekly in your notebook about your current struggles, ambitions or plans.
Ensure that you speak with someone who is ahead of you in at least one dimension of their life, once per week. If you're working on your health, have a conversation with the person who is fit at the gym.
The biggest mistake we can make with self-improvement is to be too introverted.
Write down whenever you spend money on anything. A spreadsheet can be used to track your spending.
The good life is easier to attain if you're able to budget for it, such as using saved money to buy books.
For many, the major obstacles to the good life is the abundance of temptations keeping us in the same place:
Set yourself a time for bed and a wake time. Then stick to it. A consistent sleeping schedule allows you to predictably plan all the other things you intend to do.
This could be a new restaurant, a new activity, event, or just walking in a part of town you've never been to before.
A problem of productivity is that we tend to stick to activities we know are rewarding and tend to avoid trying new things that may be a waste of time. Adding some randomness in your calendar may offer profound results.
Good rituals can be done quickly, on-demand, and help you get into focus. Pairing a consistent routine with focused work can help to direct your mind into a state of productivity. But rituals can also prevent you from moving into focused work and instead become a tool for procrastination.