Asked

What are some habits/routines you're currently building?

Curious to hear what new habits other members you all are building?

Some sub-questions:

  • What made you want to build this particular habit?
  • How is it going? Harder/easier than possible? Anything surprising?
  • What benefits (and drawbacks) have you experienced so far?


I started waking up earlier and going to the gym in the morning.

Historically I've been very much a nightowl. I've never had a real job so my only fixed schedule was during my student years. Even then I had a hard time waking up on time each day and ever since graduating I've had a shifted wake/sleep routine waking up late in the morning or early/mid afternon. And going to bed past midnight, often around 3am and some periods even later.

I think people should follow a routine whatever works for them and I really dislike society's regard of nightowls. Wake up later than average is often seen as lazy, but then working until late is considered unhealthy too. Make up your mind! 😂

That said, the vast majority of high performers seem to wake up early. And the times I do wake up early (and have had enough sleep), my days felt longer and more productive.

So that's why I'm trying to wake up early. For me anything before 10am would be considered early, but the aim right now is to wake up around 8am everyday.

In addition to that I try to go to the gym first thing in the morning. I typically work out in the evening, but I always dread going because I'm usually still working and don't want to stop. If I wait too long I don't have the energy to give it my all and it somewhat feels like waste.

Exercising in the morning definitely requires some discipline, but in some sense it's proving to be easier. Because I tell myself "I can start work (which I really enjoy) after gym" so then I'm incentivized to head to the gym earlier rather than later.

Having read James Clear's Atomic Habits I also realize it's easier to build a habit on top of another habit (also known as "habit stacking") as one thing naturally leads to the next. That's how it works now: I wake up. Shower. Exercise.

It's all part of one morning routine. One thing leads to the next.

Once I finish at the gym the rest becomes easy. I naturually get hungry so I want to eat and I eat. I naturally feel like working so I go work. Eventually I get hungry again and kind of tired so I eat and stop working.

Having that morning routine sets me up for the rest of the day 👌

How it's going

Today I woke up at 1pm and didn't go to the gym haha. So I'm definitely not there yet. But before 1pm was normal. Now it's an anomaly.

Most days the last week or two I've pretty good at waking up early. And I went to the gym in the morning about half of the time, but I also got a bunch of early appointments that made it difficult to stick to my schedule.

So all in all there's definitely some ways to go, but already a big change over all the years before.

Benefits and drawbacks

The benefits are pretty obvious. I do find myself more productive in a day. Starting with exercise definitely is part of that. But also waking up early just feels more productive than waking up at 2pm in the afternoon.

The drawback is that there might be reasons to stay up a little later (e.g. many of friends become active online when it's late in my day), so that's a little tougher. And the main drawback is I don't get to sleep in which I really liked 😂

But overall the benefits outweight the drawbacks. Let's see how long I can keep this going 😄

Same here, just trying to wake up earlier! Got it down from 11am to 9:30am..but then it's because I don't sleep at 4am, so I'm not sure if it makes a difference.

I listened to a podcast with Charlie Sloth saying he used to get up at 5am so he was already ahead of everyone else by the time they wake up..I'll try it anyway, then I can do more pointless walking around with people during the daytime

I’m not a big fan of changing many routines at the same time, but there are a couple of things going on:
- I stopped drinking anything other than water, tea and coffee. I really don’t know why but it helps in decision making and also drinking less alcohol (would drink ~5 units a week). Saves money on drinks too, lol.
- I bought 2,5kgs of whey again to start my day the same every day: heat 75gr of oats and 200ml milk in microwave and add scoop of whey to start day with a filling combination of fibre and protein. Easy, simple, nutritious.
- Since my daughter was born in february I have taken many more walks than I used to. It’s great, even in Dutch fall/winter weather (grey/rain). Clears the mind, light exposure, quality time with baby, time off-screen. I’m looking forward to my walk every day, even though I live in a boring neighbourhood.

I now only try/choose habits that increase my presence as a father and/or decrease anxiety.

2 things i should do:
- take language lessons again, or at least pick up a language book or duo lingo to get started
- set time aside for writing

I love it! A few days ago, I decided to stop doing marketing (I've been doing that for 4 years, even though I started as a startup founder when I was 14) and start working on the ideas I've never had the time to work on.

The first few days I felt free because I wasn't the "young marketing agency owner" anymore. That came with some responsibilities though:

  • I'm a beginner again, and I need to learn how to successfully build and launch.
  • Organisation when working on a startup is just different. I'm still adapting.

So, to solve these problems, I decided I was going to build in public starting from Monday. These first two weeks (this and the next one) are to adapt to the new mindset and set up my social media profiles.

So that's what I'm working on right now... The really big problem routine-wise is task prioritization. I don't have the experience to know what to work on first. How do you guys prioritize your to-do lists? 💪🙌

(Btw I'd truly appreciate it if you considered following my journey on twitter - only if you enjoy what I write obv)

How do you guys prioritize your to-do lists?

"Focus on the one thing that makes everything else easier or unnecessary."

Paraphrasing from this podcast which is worth a listen: tim.blog/2019/12/12/gary-kell…

Thanks for sharing Marc! Will listen asap

# Habit: Language learning

I'm trying to learn Thai by using the Automatic Language Growth method, which is based on inputting as much from the target language as possible.
The method approaches language learning like children learn a language, so no complicated grammar or vocabulary learning at the start, only comprehensible input through videos and audio.
This means I am inputting at least 30min - 60min of Thai content daily through podcasts and video, but my goal is to increase this number to several hours.
I still learn vocabulary (which is not recommended by the ALG method) because I have the urge to understand faster and have also read that some folks do it this way and have had good results.

# What made you want to build this particular habit?

I am going to Thailand for the 4th time, this time for 3 months, and I want to be able to communicate with locals and not be that foreigner who always comes to a country and does not know more than hello and goodbye.
Language opens a door to a whole new dimension of the culture and the society of a country, which why I want to open this door.

# How is it going? Harder/easier than possible? Anything surprising?

It's going alright, I was sick a week and broke my habits, but besides that I am managing to build a routine.

# What benefits (and drawbacks) have you experienced so far?

I am able to understand just a little word from native content, which really surprised me. Another benefit is, I have learned how many layers not only the Thai language but also Sanskrit has, which opened up a whole new dimension for me which I think is really fascinating.
Drawbacks daily when I forget vocab I learned the last day xD

This sounds interesting. So you just consume a lot of Thai spoken content?

Yes, priority is input as much before output. But the input has to be ideally comprehensible. Here's the ALG method explained
www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Vg2E…

Take this video for example youtu.be/aNdYdSpL6zE you will quickly understand the meaning of "What is?" "This is" and T-Shirt and Shoes in Thai.

Here's another guy who learned Japanese with a variation of the method explaining how he did it www.youtube.com/watch?v=vJG9k…

It makes language learning actually fun

And I watch a bunch of Thai Native Yt Content I'm trying to make a TV Channel so I dont have to think about what to watch you can copy this repo and look at it github.com/futurefounder/thai…

What are some habits/routines you're currently building?

What made you want to build this particular habit?
How is it going? Harder/easier than possible? Anything surprising?
What benefits (and drawbacks) have you experienced so far?

Cooking

I've been learning to cook for the past couple of months. I'm not great at it, mediocre at best I could say. Others tell me I'm decent but I think I'm not. I've been trying to cook atleast couple of days a week, experimenting with new dishes or cooking the same dishes but faster. I've always wanted to cook but never dared to try. This year I was burned out (past year as well) from what i've been doing for the past 3-4 years, so I just decided to take a break and not work that much. So I didn't know what else to do with my time and decided to pick up cooking. Started with making sauces which eventually led me down to make other things.

When I started It looked harder but honestly it's not as hard as I thought. I always try to enjoy the process, reassure myself saying that it's okay to make mistakes and mess it up because I can always try another time. As simple and cliche as it sounds, it's not very obvious when learning a new skill. The Surprising thing is that cooking led me to baking, but I don't like it much because it has to be so precise and I just can't wing it like I do with cooking, haha. Also sugar.

Gym

This is a habit I started last year, I was at a low point in my life so I just said f it and went to the gym. I had gone to the gym a few years before that but it never stuck, only went for a couple of months. This time though I changed a lot of factors like proximity, time of day and time spent in the gym. I had this simple rule, if I don't feel like going to the gym, just go anyway and spend a minute inside. If I don't feel like it, I'm allowed to return home. It worked and I've been consistently going to the gym.

My goal at the gym is to get stronger, I mainly do compound exercises because I really enjoy them compared to what I used to do before. I've become stronger and more active, the days I go to the gym I even feel better mentally. Overall I'm quite happy that I've stock to a routine for more than a year!

Reading / exploring new ideas

This is something I struggle with, I've failed multiple times. I try to listen to an audiobook but couple of weeks later the habit just ceases to exist. I'm going to try this again, I usually used to listen to a book before going to bed.

I started to try out the deep work approach, so every morning I go to work on my projects, without any new input, so no WhatsApp, no telegram, no social media, just a cup of coffee and go to code and work on my side projects for 1-2h.

This has worked a lot, currently I'm on a streak of 13 days coding.

Other habits that I'm still struggling to keep up.
- No screens after 8pm
- walk with my dogs for 30 min
- read for at least 30 min

For 2023 I'm planning to:
- workout 3-4x a week
- make some money online with my projects
- shape up the habits that I'm struggling

Habit: 60 by 60 (60 Days of 60 Minute Meditation)

I'm doing this famous challenge called 60 by 60. It was coined by Naval Ravikant, but i'm sure it had been a thing before he mentioned it. It stands for 60 days, 60 minutes of meditation.

I was big into meditation pre-covid and fell off the mark during and post covid. I think its because of the stress and anxiety that the time brought me. I almost felt like I had to rush through my life more because of lost time, therefore meditation seemed like a waste of time and I stopped doing it.

Through building my startup, eComjobs, and dealing with all other things in life I wanted to return to this practice but in this manner, I wanted to dive deep into it. As such, I took on the habit of 60 days, 60 minutes of meditation. I'm on day 25.

What's easier than I thought is the length of time. Once you get past 10-20 minutes (i'm not sure if thats the actual length of time, considering i'm meditating during) then it really becomes super peaceful. This place you go to feels home-like. It's extremely calming. Prior to the 10-20 minutes its absolute chaos, but after it feels like everything settles. Like a nice, day-time nap that you are somehow semi-conscious throughout.

Whats harder than I thought is life outside of it. When you do meditation for an hour a day, everything outside of life is seen more clearly. Things become like clouds in the sky, just passing by. But in running a startup and being an independent entrepreneur, you've got a lot of stress and necessities that life throws at you. And you need to answer them. Especially for me & just starting out, meditation calms me yet life does quite the opposite. I'd like to find a way to marry the two, but so far I have not.

The biggest benefit I have is that I feel more disciplined, but not in the traditional sense. I feel like I have more bandwidth from my mind to my body when it comes to making decisions. Like I have more control, and its easier to say no. My decision making is a lot more crisp. I'm able to think alot more succinctly.

Will report back on day 60, if anyone cares :) But so far, so good!

Looking forward to your results! I'd love to do it myself if it's as amazing as they say ;)

Nightowl habits
I had this style of life about for 8 years. I guess it was formulated from important points of a schedule during this life stage
- 10..15: University
- 16..21: Contract Job, work with US team (-10), from Kiev (+2)
- 21..22: Workout, and pre-workout drink :)
- 23- 2: Night clubs, datings, entertainment and feeling life

Advantages:
+ For my opinion good fit for students, you can combine university, job, life - therefore
you have very comfort because:
1. You can satisfy your parents that you are getting degree :)
2. You can satisfy your needs and do not worry about money for good life, girls and save some money.
3. You have feeling like "i have so intensive and interesting days"

Disadvantages:
+ As we all know habits are really hard to change, so after student years this becomes a base for the next years
+ You do not have time to take retrospective of you life because feeling of super comfort. It does not trigger you to think about changing something in your life.
+ You all time in a rush. Walk up before 20 minutes to get the campus (late!). Some time lessons are too long and you are late on meetings at work (late again!)... and so on most of time.
+ You have illusion of personal "effective time" at 2am, when everybody is sleeping and does not chat/call to you. Time for side projects

Lark!
I had opinion before - it completely does not matter when you walk up, but it was complete my mistake thinking from my experience.

There is great book about how even month/date when you born could change you life on "big numbers" - Outliers: The Story of Success Malcolm Gladwell

When the war came to Ukraine, most of cities have curfew. You must be at home from 11pm-5am. So everything is closing till 9pm. You habits and values are rebuilding, because of changing external environment. Start appreciate more time, investments in yourself and basic things as it was during peace time.

So to left social my habits rebuild automatically without any effort from my side, naturally...

You start walking up early because everything is closing too early. You cannot anymore go for a dinner at 1am or supermarket. You have to do it till 9pm. Therefore you start set up you live meetings also earlier... Consciously earlier go to bed.

You never know when is last day. You are number 1!.
After revaluation your values i started thinking like - "I do everything related to myself firstly during the day and only after everything else (work etc...)

I started trying something new (MMA, Tennis, Dancing hip-hop, contemporary)... what was delayed.
Investments in yourself - most profitable.

6-7am: walk up
7-9am: plan the day, do at least 1 task for your personal project. Still muted phone/messengers
9-12am: shower, MMA or Workout or Tennis(summer) or Snowboarding park
Actually it is really hard to have almost everyday activity, not because it is hard to go... when you do activity everyday - it is actually hard to NOT do
On long time period you will not get recovered for the next day (if you do good training) and therefore testosterone becomes lower because you body cannot recover till the next training. So you must to control your food/vitamins/additives.
- Protein Grams/per day = yourBodyMassKG x 2
- Curcumin + Black Peper
- L Arginine
- Htp 5 - before bed
- Sport Vitamins
- Magnimum B6 - before bed
- Omega 3/6/9
- BCAA during every training

I do have priorties in trainings:
2 MMA per week
2 Workouts
2 Tennis/Snowboarding park - optional. base on feeling and recovery state

12am-7pm: Contract job meetings
7-11pm: Do at least 1 task in personal project, meet friends/girlfriend
11:30 go to bed

Summary:
I do like style of Lark. I become more happy, never misses trainings (i do not understand now, how people able to go to the gym at the evening), only if not recovered.
I see schedule of day as priority of your life:
1. So set up myself on start of the day. You are number 1. Trainings, Health
2. Investments into YOUR feature and money
N. Other/s

🧗 I've picked up Bouldering and I love it!

I never "liked" sports, did enjoy snowboarding, ping pong, etc, but hate going to the gym or running, but Bouldering is amazing.

There's a puzzle aspect to it, to solve the route, how to climb, how to move your feet. And there's strength aspect to it. I'm just a weak programmer so there's lots of room for growth. The boulder gym renews all routes every 5 weeks so there's always new puzzles to solve and routes to explore.

So now I go to the Boulder gym on Tuesday and Friday morning and climb till my arms are empty (around 1 hour). Plan to make that Mo / We / Fr in a couple weeks when my hands get less blisters 😅

I've also noticed it's a reason to start training muscles do push-ups etc as it'll allow me to climb more difficult routes and climb longer.

Oh nice. I think @levelsio is also into bouldering

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