In a little under 12 hours it will be another year. While I’m slightly overwhelmed at this fact, I feel excited at the prospect of a new year where can change myself and improve on where and who I currently am.
I want the next year to be one that I can be proud of. Not that I wasn’t in this last year, it’s just that it could have been so much better if I had more focus, more reflection and more will power. My motive for the next year is to change this. I want to work on good habits and make it a point to learn as much as I can.
There are a couple of ways that I plan to achieve this. The first being this journal of mine. I plan to make this Journal a Common Place book for myself of what I experience of the next year (hence the name) .
A commonplace book is a central resource or depository for ideas, quotes, anecdotes, observations and information you come across during your life and didactic pursuits. The purpose of the book is to record and organize these gems for later use in your life, in your business, in your writing, speaking or whatever it is that you do.
The first step to my plan of a better year is to add something to this journal daily. Zooming in and out on my overarching plans down to the specifics of my days.
Tracking what I’ve done, what I’ve yet to do, good things that have happened and mistakes that I’ve made. Through this coming year, I will be looking to reevaluate my actions and my goals to better myself. I will also look to make this journal more concise, efficient and effective.
While it may change in the future, my current structure for the journal is the following:
- I will be utilizing a daily physical bullet journal, slightly customized for my needs and goals. I will use it through the day for to dos and tasks as well as notes related to my over arching goals and my general work. While I’ll be using the bullet journal as a frame work for my note taking, for content I’m consuming, I will be utilizing a variation of Ryan Holidays concept of a common place book to assist me in digesting information (see “How And Why To Keep A ‘Commonplace Book'” and “The Notecard System: The Key For Remembering, Organizing And Using Everything You Read”). I will show the framework of a general entry below.
- During Breakfast every morning, I will log my Bullet Journal to this log from the previous day. They will be named by a general theme of the day and the date.
- The other type of posts that I’ll make are break-through’s I’ve made, good things that have happened that I appreciate, mistakes that I’ve made, alterations to any structure in my journal-ling or goals, ideas, important knowledge/concepts and any media that I think is worth holding onto.
Here is my current structural concept for a general daily post:
Thoughts On the book I’m currently reading
Current Long Term Goal and Progress
Current Mid Term Goal and Progress
Current Short Term Goal and Progress
I will be utilizing a bullet journal exactly as displayed with the addition of page for goals that I’m currently advancing towards, Books that I’m reading, podcasts that I’ve listened to and other media. These logs of notes for books, podcasts and other media will be logged in extraneous notes. They will then be reviewed at the end of the month and weeded and mined for what still sticks out to me.
So what are these goals? The first is physical: diet, exercise and meditation.
I’m looking to keep diet simple. While I’m going to track what I eat with this journal and My Fitness Pal, I’m not going to be super concerned with calorie counting. I’m going to be more concerned with Macros. My macros being 10% carbs, 45% fat and 45% protein.
I’ll be looking to stick to whole foods and away from processed items with one cheat day each week so that I have something to look forward to and hold off to if I really feel a point of low will power. This diet is effectively the slow carb diet.
I am currently 5’9″, 226 lbs with a whopping (~)32% body fat. Current goal is to lose a pound a week. That would mean hitting 200 lbs by or before July 1st.
I would need to lose about 4.3 pounds a month. This is how much I should weigh at the end of these months if I’m on track – my monthly way points:
- January end – 221 lbs
- February end – 218 lbs
- March end – 213 lbs
- April end – 209 lbs
- May end – 205 lbs
- June end – 201 lbs
- July end – 196 lbs
My current fitness program involves weight lifting 3 times a week, cardio 3 times a week and a rest day.
M: Weight lifting
W: Weight lifting
F: Weight lifting
My weight lifting program at the moment is utilizing the Stronglifts 5×5 app. The two circuits that I switch between, the weights that I use and my reps are the following:
Circuit 1 – includes a 1/2 mile to a mile jog warm-up
– Squat – 5×5 140lb
– OH Press – 5×5 60lb
– Dead-lift – 1×5 135lb
– Straight-bar Curls – 3×8 50lb
– Close Grip Press – 3×8 95lb
– Plate Crunches – 2×10 0lb
Circuit 2 – includes a 1/2 mile to a mile jog warm-up
– Squat – 5×5 145lb
– Bench Press – 5×5 145lb
– Row – 5×5 70lb
– Skull-crushers – 2×8 70lb
– Plate Crunches – 2×10 0lb
– Hyper-extensions – 2×10 25lb
My cardio currently consists of Hiit Workouts from the great Youtube Channel, Bodyrock. Currently completing the HiitMax Series. I plan to interchange these Hiit workouts with body-weight workouts from the Bodyweight Training App.
I’m starting meditation is a simple breathing concentration technique. For the first two months, I will attempt to reach 5 minutes. After that, I will raise the limit to 10 minutes and so on. I will look to meditate after I work out or before breakfast.
My goal for reading is 3 fold:
- Read a book a month (aim for Syntopical reading),
- Listen to the audio book of the previous months book – keeping my notes close at hand and editing them,
- Write an article about the book at months end – reviewing the book, its main points and my main take-aways.
My current book list for the year:
Jan: “How to Read a Book”
Feb: “Tools of Titans”
May: “The Tipping Point”
Jun: “Moonwalking With Einstein”
Aug: “Think Big, Act Small”
Sep: “The Obstacle is the Way”
Nov: “The E Myth”
Dec: “Creative Intelligence”
My last goal for the year involves learning. I have a list below of things that I’d like to learn or advance in. I’m going to give myself a month (I’m averaging 12 hours a month – 3 hours a week of practice) and work towards learning how to achieve these items.
I’m simply going to provide myself with a goal for “completion” of each skill and look to hit it within a month of time. If I am satisfied with the result, I will move on to the next skill goal. As I complete a goal, I will reattempt that goal and the past goals in order to test my own retention.
I’m looking to use this experience to experiment and see how I learn best and how best I can teach myself. Two sources that inspired me to undertake this were Tim Ferris and his book the 4 hour chef and Mike Boyd, who has a winder youtube channel here.
I’ll be looking to use smart goals to achieve these items and work on one at a time. Wish me luck.
Skill / Goal
- Memory Palace / Memorize “If” By: Rudyard Kipling
- Learn Spanish / Learn the “Deconstruction dozen” (see page 46 of 4 hour chef), “test out of 15 skills” on Duolingo, have a full conversation with a Spanish speaker.
- Learn to Draw / Complete how to draw book, this tutorial series and a Kenny Test.
- Learn Guitar / Learn Main Chords and how to play 10 songs.
- Learn Node JS / Complete udemy course and make a small personal project.
- Learn Pool / Clear the table twice in a row.
- Learn to Juggle / Juggle 3 balls for a minute.
- Learn Piano / Play Piano Man and this series.
- Learn Chess / Beat Ken 3 times in a row
- Learn Hot to Pick a Lock / Pick the front door.
- Learn 3D Modeling / Re-Create Fetch
- Learn French / Learn the “Deconstruction dozen” (see page 46 of 4 hour chef), “test out of 15 skills” on Duolingo, have a full conversation with a Spanish speaker.