2019 Week 5 Goals

Week 4 was getting back to routines week. When it comes to habits, even if you can’t keep up with everything, one sure shot way to measure if you will succeed or not is how soon you get back to it.
 

Review of Week 4

 
1.Duolingo
 
I finished a 27 day streak. Even though I wasn’t able to keep up with anything else, I made sure that I was spending two minutes on learning Spanish daily.
 
2.Courses
 
Since I love photography or rather since it is my current obsession, even though I was tired, I continued with the next course in the series of the photography. I used my commute time for doing the next course in Creative Writing.
 
The photography course helped me understand the techniques I was already using. The craft of character helped me understand what makes a story beautiful.
 
3.Books
 
Since I was quite stressed out at work, I needed a book where I don’t have to use my mind but can relax. Hence I started reading ‘A man called Ove’. I discovered how the principles I learnt in the craft of character were being applied here. It made me make a new goal for the next week which is active reading.
 
4.Exercise
 
I discovered a jogging track with lake close to my house. I went for a jog after really long time. It not only made me feel good that I got back to exercising but also helped me click a few wonderful photos.
 

Plans for Week 5

 
1.General
 
I will start writing my diary daily. One easy way to connect with self is writing diary. I haven’t been writing it regularly these days which makes me incomplete.
 
2.Health
 
a)Physical
 
i)Exercise
 
Just move my body daily. The form or intensity or the time doesn’t matter.
 
3.Hobbies
 
a)Photography
 
I will continue with the Principles of photography course.
 
b)Writing
 
I will write one answer on Quora daily. This is one of the best ways for me to get back into the habit of writing again.
 
That is all for this week. What are your goals for this week?
 
Happy week 5 !
 

2019 Week 4 Challenges

 
I can call this week a failure or look at it as a learning. I was at work for more than 12 hours a day which left me with hardly no time for my hobbies. But I will take it as a learning and not keep too much on my plate for this week.
 

Review of Week 3

 
1.Ownership
 
It is easier said than done. When the circumstances are overwhelming, it becomes difficult to separate emotions from logic. With insomnia, everything goes haywire.
 
2.Connecting online
 
I made a list of websites for which I can write mails to. It is easy to comment on answers on Quora or Instagram but it is difficult to make that connection work.
 
3.Learn 7 kannada words
 
I raised a question on Quora from where I could learn 7 adjectives.
 
4.Books
 
I usually read books whenever I find breathing space. But I could not enjoy reading books because they also involved using my brain.
 
5.Courses
The only thing I could make time for last week was for courses. I made use of the time I take to fall asleep to do the courses.
 
Camera Control
 
This course helped me understand the different types of lenses and gave me a clarity on the type of camera I need to buy. It wasn’t an eye opener but definitely gave me the foundations I very much needed.
 
Craft of Plot
 
For those of us who are lazy to create an editing checklist, he made a checklist to go through before publishing the work. It would have been great if each of the checklist was explained
 
What didn’t work well
 
Due to hectic work life, this week didn’t go as planned at all. It was really difficult to have a proper sleep schedule which took a toll on other parts of life.
 

Plans for Week 4

 
1.General
 
What did I learn today which will help me to be better tomorrow? This is what I will question myself every night.
 
2.Health
 
a)Physical
 
i)Exercise
 
Apart from squats and skipping, I will start off with starter push-ups and planks.
 
I am up to my brim in my personal and professional life. I don’t want to push myself into sleepless nights under the name of improving myself. It is okay to have small goals a few times.
 
That is all for this week. What are your goals for this week?
 
Happy week 4 !
 

2019 Week 3 Challenges

It was one hell of a busy week. It made me learn to squeeze my learning into the schedule.
 

Review of Week 2

 
1.What makes my day good
 
This gave me the two or three important things I want to focus on for the day. I wanted to do this to get motivation to wake up from bed and that purpose wasn’t served.
 
2.Gratitude
 
Even though I had a few bad days, feeling grateful for what I had made me look at the brighter side of my life.
 
3.Don’t imagine
 
This was the toughest challenge of the week. The more you don’t want to think about something, the more you end up thinking about it.
 
4.Collecting emotional moments
 
In theory, it was a very interesting activity. When people were talking to me, I left my work and paid attention to them. But it will take some practise to get that connect to feel that an emotional moment can be collected.
 
5.Learn 7 Kannada words
 
I asked a question on Quora for verbs in Kannada and my job became easy to learn. The easiest part of learning verbs was that a few of them are from Tamil and a few others from Telugu. There is not a lot of effort in learning Kannada if you know other South Indian languages.
Maadi – Do it
Banni – Come
Kudiyiri – Drink
Thinni – Eat
Kudi – Give
Tagolli – Take
 
6.Books
 
Common sense on mutual funds
 
From so far I read, the author was complaining about people removing and adding money with market fluctuations making them a short term investor. Doing further research on the keywords used in the book, has made me a little equipped with financial terms.
 
4 Hour work week
 
The chapters I read this week were motivational and packed with a lot of action points. I will be taking up one after the other over the coming weeks. It was not really for earning a second source of income but for becoming the person who can become one.
 
Mastermind
 
How many stairs do you climb daily?
 
I just read a few pages. The key takeaway for now is that we live so mindlessly now but as kids we used to observe everything so well in our surroundings. That is the reason why majority of them don’t even know the count of stairs they climb and colour of them.The book talks about how Holmes is different from Watson and how even we can be like Holmes by just being more mindful.
 
7.Courses
 
Cameras Exposure and Photography
 
The last week of this course helped me learn a few more technical terms. There is neither practical knowledge from it nor I am good at theory but it does provide some basic information which every photographer should know. Since I was not watching with an intent to memorise everything, it needs to be redone for me to start understanding and using the terms in a deeper way.
 
Craft of Plot
 
It is an interesting course where the speaker was translating something as abstract as creative writing to a set of rules. I am yet to digest and imbibe them into my writing.
 
What didn’t work well
 
Since I was still recovering, I couldn’t experiment on exercise, food and skin care.I haven’t spent any time on progressing in my academics either.
 

Plans for Week 3

 
1.General
 
Irrespective of whether you agree or not, Pareto’s law (80/20 rule) has infilterated into our lives. I will put a conscious effort to figure out the 80% of the things which are just eating up my day and the 20% of the things which are driving the results.
 
2.Health
 
a)Physical
 
i)Exercise
 
Since I haven’t exercised last week, this week I will do what I couldn’t in the last week – 30 squats and 300 times skipping daily.
 
ii)Food
 
The same applies to food too. I will soak two almonds in the night and have the same next morning.
 
iii)Skin care
 
Since I haven’t done the last week routine, this week I am just going to apply turmeric.
 
b)Mental
 
Ownership
 

“No one can hurt you without your permission.”

 
If you are feeling any negative emotions, you are giving the remote to another person or external circumstance to control you. I want to take ownership of how I feel.
 
3.Relationships
 
I will expand my online network. Every day, I will message or email at least one person online.
 
4.Hobbies
 
a)Photography
 
In continuation of the photography course on coursera, I will go with the next one in the series – Camera Control. Even though I play with those settings daily, a little bit of academic knowledge doesn’t hurt.
 
b)Writing
 
I am left with the fourth week of the course The craft of the plot. I will finish it. Along with that, I will start reading Hey Whipple, Squeeze this. I want to learn just one tip a day. Not more than that.
 
c)Language
 
This week is dedicated to learning my favourite adjectives from other languages in kannada.
 
5.Academics
 
I will read just one page from the book daily before going to sleep.
 
6.Mental agility
 
I will learn to be more mindful and start observing my surroundings. I will read a few more pages of Mastermind for more such ideas.
 
7.Second source of income
 
The action points I picked up last week from 4 Hour work week are good enough to learn time and work management. I am excited to know what more the book has in store.
Even though the book on mutual funds is dry, I will try to read at least a page a day.
 
That is all for this week. What are your goals for this week?
 
Happy week 3 !
 

2019 Week 2 Challenges

Before I could even recover from my illness, week 1 passed away. What is my progress?
 

Week 1 Review

 
1.Reduce Phone Usage
 
The least number of times I unlocked my phone was on 1st January. On rest of the days, the unlock count was twice or thrice of that. If I was able to do it on one day, I can reproduce the same results for other days. I will target below 100 for the next one week.
 
2.Chew thoroughly
 
For a lazy person like me, it was indeed a tortuous task. I have read somewhere that you need to chew 24 times before you swallow. But from experience, you need to chew at least 36 times. I don’t see any immediate improvements in my health but scientifically I should see some results in near future. The disadvantages being no one will want to eat food with you because you take forever to finish the meal. You will find eating such a boring task that you will stop eating junk because the fun of it is lost.
 
3.What am I feeling today
 
It was a neutral tone for most of the week. It didn’t prove to be as useful an exercise I wanted it to be. I will get rid of this.
 
4.Gratitude
 
Even though I was sick for the entire week, feeling grateful for what I have definitely made me feel good. I will practise gratitude twice a day from next week.
 
5.Cameras, Exposure and Photography
 
The first week of the course didn’t seem to be that useful. It is just a revision of basics. From the topics, it looks like the 4th week of the course is useful. This week I am going to focus on that.
 
6.Duolingo
 
It takes just 2 minutes every morning. I already did 6 lessons. Easiest way to learn a new language.
 
7.Academics
 
I have 5 research topics for this week. But none of them seem interesting enough to pursue further.
 
8.Books
 
Mental Agility
 
This book is more of a compilation of research papers than a reader friendly book. The language and content takes a lot of time to comprehend the content.
 
Common Sense on Mutual funds
 
The style of the book is not like the usual books I read. There is a detailed introduction which ate up a lot of my time. Haven’t learned any concepts yet which are worth sharing.
 
4 Hour Work Week
 
The first few chapters are only for motivating you to look at the concept of taking mini retirements instead of a final retirement. No action points yet to start working on.
 
What didn’t go well this week
 
I was sick hence couldn’t exercise and take care of my skin. I haven’t interacted much with people I could not put to use the common ways of resolving conflicts.
 

Plans for Week 2

 
1.General
 
I will stop checking my phone the first thing in the morning and write down 3 things which will make my day fruitful.
 
2.Health
 
a)Physical
 
Exercise
 
I am not feeling better yet. But once I am, I will do 30 squats and 300 times skipping daily.
 
Food
 
I will soak two almonds in the night and have the same next morning.
 
Skin care
 
Since I haven’t done the last week routine, this week I am just going to apply turmeric.
 
b)Mental
 
Gratitude
 
I will practise gratitude twice a day.
 
Don’t imagine
 
I tend to think of negative outcomes for a lot of scenarios. I don’t get anything positive from it. I will make a conscious effort to stay away from such negative thoughts.
 
3.Relationships
One of my favourite takeaways from The Relationship Cure book is collecting emotional moments. I will find opportunities to build emotional connections with people around me.
 
4.Hobbies
 
a)Photography
 
I will do the fourth week of the course Cameras, Exposure and Photography.
 
b)Writing
 
I will continue with the Creative writing course of Coursera.
 
c)Language
 
Learn one verb in Kannada a day and use it somewhere.
 
5.Academics
 
I received material for one of my subjects. I will read a topic from it daily.
 
6.Mental agility
 
This week I am going to start reading the Mastermind – How to think like Sherlock Holmes. This might teach me a few tricks.
 
7.Second source of income
 
I will continue reading 4 hour work week as I didn’t learn anything actionable last week.
 
That is all for this week. What are your goals for this week?
 
Happy week 2 !
 

2019 Week 1 Challenges

As I mentioned in my previous post, this year is going to be only about weekly goals. I want to focus on the quality by which an activity is changing my life rather than how much time I am spending on that.

Here are the goals by areas of improvement and my strategy to reach them.

1. General

All of us have the same 24 hours. But one thing which differentiates an average person from the elite is how they make use of the time. In the past few months, I realised that I keep checking my phone for no reason. It is a sure shot killer of time. Hence I installed Your hour app. This tells me the number of times I unlock the phone in a day. I am not aiming for a 50% decrease in a day. I want to be more mindful and unlock it only when it is absolutely necessary. I want to reduce whatsapp time and increase the time I spend on reading books.

If I am successful in this one habit, it is going to create a lot more time for me to pursue my dreams.

2. Health

Physical

Exercise

I can create an elaborate exercise routine. But from the way I failed in it last year, I don’t want to create any of that. I will keep it simple. I will just focus on squats. Presently I can comfortably do 20 squats without any fatigue. It doesn’t take more than 2 minutes. Irrespective of how late I wake up, these few minutes is something I can definitely afford.

Food

Staying mindful of what you eat makes a huge difference. I want to start with counting the number of times I chew the food before I swallow it. I read that this is one of the easiest ways to reduce weight. Now is the chance for me to try and test it.

Skin care

I want to start taking care of my skin in a natural way. One of the most common home remedy to have a shining skin is to apply turmeric.

Mental

What am I feeling today?

Even though writing a diary is all about writing down what I feel, doing this exercise helps me point out the main things which pull me down.

Gratitude

One of the easiest ways to stay happy is by feeling content with what you already have. Feeling grateful for what I have is going to bring a smile on my face irrespective of how bad my day goes. Every night before I go to sleep, I will write it.

3.Relationships

In the book, the relationship cure the author mentions about 6 ways you can approach a person during a conflict. I am a straight forward person and seemed to have offended way too many people in the past few months. This chapter is helpful for me to convey my honest feelings while not offending the opposite party.

4.Hobbies

Photography

In the last few weeks, I received compliments that I am good at identifying what I want to capture. But I just need to learn technical details. In order to equip myself technically, I will start off with this course from coursera.

Writing

I will be reading Words that sell and doing Craft of plot.

Language

I finished french from Duolingo. Even though I can’t speak french, it was fun to learn a new language. Now I want to learn Spanish, which is the most spoken language in the world. Just one lesson on Duolingo everyday for the next 365 days will help me achieve that.

5.Academics

I will write down one plausible topic I want to research on. The topic can be feasible or not feasible. I don’t want to limit myself when thinking.

6.Mental agility

Right now, I don’t have a plan on how I can go about it. But the easiest way I know is to read a book and pick ideas from there. I will be reading the book Agile mind to get started with it.

7.Second source of income

I won’t be earning money at the end of the week. But I can collect ideas and gain knowledge on this by reading Common sense on mutual funds and 4 Hour work week.

I will read the book whenever I feel like opening my phone or need some sort of distraction. I won’t measure myself in terms of how many pages I have read but by how many ideas I could collect by the end of the week.

That is all for this week. What are your goals for this week?

Happy week 1 !

2019 Goals

Wish you a very happy new year. Hope you bring all your dreams come true in this year.

I took an entire month (December 2018) to rethink about what I want to do in this year and came up with this plan.

The major changes I made from last year to this year are

1. Only weekly goals

I am getting rid of monthly goals and will just hold on to weekly goals. As mentioned last year, this tells me quickly whether I achieved or failed my target.

2. Areas of improvement

I will classify my goals into broad areas of improvement. I am going to work on each area of it daily.

a) General

This is about making minute changes in my behavior to become a more effective person. It can range from productivity, minimalism, change in attitude, perception or anything which can bring about that positive difference.

b) Health

It is one of the most loosely used word without defining what part of health you are referring to.

I will broadly classify it as physical and mental.

Physical health further depends on what you eat and how you burn that. This boils down to food intake and exercises. Apart from that, the ones who age well, also take care of their skin. It is one of the most neglected aspect of my life. It is high time I start focusing on that.

Just like how food decides what makes your body, what you read defines your mental health. I want to read many more interesting and mind expanding books this year. Apart from that, staying happy decides your productivity levels. I will work on a 52 day happiness exercises to see a difference. One of the easiest ways to take care of your mind is meditation. I want to take my meditation practise to the next level this year.

c) Relationships

Human beings are social beings. I was a shy introvert for a major part of my life and hardly spent any time in building a network. It is time for me to expand my circle in real life and also virtual life.

d) Hobbies

A part of me dies when I stop doing what I love. My latest passion is photography. That doesn’t mean that I should ditch writing. Both of them complete me in their own way. Just writing or clicking photos doesn’t help me grow. I need to learn the science behind the art to see real and quick growth.

Right now, my mind is so tuned to speak in Tamil as the default language spoken to the locals was tamil. I need to make kannada the default language now.

e) Academics

As a part of the correspondence course I am doing in psychology, I need to do an internship for 6 months, publish a research paper and prepare for examinations. I will take my time and do them over a period of time.

f) Mental agility

To stand strong in this competitive world, you need to grow sharper day after day. Not everyone is born genius, but with time you can become one. I want to get better at coding, problem solving, logic reasoning and critical reasoning.

g) Second source of income

The richest people of the world on an average have 7 sources of income. I am not worried about the 7 sources now. But I want to figure out what is the second source of reliable income I can generate to retire sooner. To reach this goal, I need to understand the basics of finance and other entrepreneurial paths. I will spend this year in mainly gaining knowledge required to identify the sources of income.

3. Start small

I had been super ambitious all my life. This stresses me out and usually makes me fail to reach my goals as the initial goals were unrealistic. Even if I reach them, that would have been due to the sleepless nights I spent due to the burning motivation or due to the guilt feeling which was eating me up. As I write this today, I feel heavily driven to achieve big things in life. I want to write it all in one day. I want to spend the entire night and finish off the book. Alas! Rome wasn’t built in a day. Transformation also can’t happen over night. It will take time. I will take it really slow this year. I want to be consistent rather than gobbling up one day and lazing around the next day.

4.Measure

I want the goals to be measurable. At the end of the week, I would love to know in what way I had improved. That gives me the pleasure to know clearly that I had been improving by 1% at least every week, if not every day.

5.Habits

In the last quarter of the year, I struggled a lot to reach my self-improvement targets due to a lot of unexpected changes in my personal and professional life. The only I could have tackled it better was by having an exhaustive if then list. Such a list will help me do my routines irrespective of my unexpected timings.

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How was your 2018? What are your plans for 2019? Share it with us in the comments section.

Happy 2019 !