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This summer has been pretty packed. I managed to let my June review slip by, so I’m going to combine June and July into one review. June will mostly be a summary, while July will include the usual look at correlations and such.

June Highlights

A couple event highlights from June… A trip to Jamestown, NY for my friend’s wedding, which was an incredibly beautiful day. A trip to Texas to visit my parents for Father’s Day, which was a lovely treat. Activities included a lot of eating, hanging by the pool and a trip to the Dallas zoo - it was a great weekend getaway. I also went to the Queens zoo and Central Park zoo in June, so it was a pretty wild month all around.

Tia and I also bought a Nintendo Switch when eBay had a good site-wide sale. A bit of an impulse buy, but it was an excellent deal and we’ve been wanting one - it was totally worth it. I have played a lot of Breath of the Wild since.


Productivity was pretty flat, for June. Big drop in average productive time which means I didn’t overshoot my goal as much as I did in May, even though I hit the 5-hour mark a bit more often. I took 4 days off in June, which I expected would help boost my productivity with the added rest, but it seems to have had little effect.

  • Productivity pulse of 74 (+0)
  • Met All Productive Time goal 12/17 days
  • Average of 4h 39m (-32m) productive time per day

RescueTime Top 5 Categories:

  1. Software Development (41%)
  2. Communication & Scheduling (28%)
  3. Social Networking (9%)
  4. Utilities (6%)
  5. Business (4%)


The time off helped me get a bit more sleep, which I’m happy about. All the traveling kicked up my average steps too. Felt pretty good to be more active and get a little more sleep. Also great to see I spent a bit less in June - a good thing as I prepare for the increase in student loan payments.

  • Average of 9,025 steps / day (+6.9%)
  • Average of 2,403 calories / day (+12.4%)
  • Average of 7h 3minutes of sleep / night (+3.6%)
  • Average weight of 139.1lbs (-0.2%)
  • Average body fat percentage of 11.4% (+0%)
  • I spent 86% of my income

June’s Focus

  1. Find a way to pay down my debt faster

I made an adjustment to my budget and now that July has passed, I can say with confidence that this new payment plan is very feasible. It means a little more carefully picking what I spend on entertainment and such, and things certainly feel tighter, but once I’ve done it a few months I think it’ll just be the new normal for me,

  1. Complete the exercises in my planner

I didn’t get around to making time for this, which is a bit disappointing. I do still want to do this, it will just be a matter of deciding to commit to it and placing my planner somewhere I will always see it — more on this in the August’s focus section below.

July Highlights

A nice family party for Independence Day, a weekend hike at FDR State Park, seeing Taylor Swift at MetLife Stadium for the second time in my life, and my first-ever trip to DC for An Event Apart are all the big events from July. It felt pretty packed… one big event per week seems to be how this summer is going and it’s making it go by way too quickly. Still, the concert was phenomenal and An Event Apart was just as empowering as my first last year in Seattle. I have also spent almost every spare evening playing Breath of the Wild on my Switch and frankly, it’s one of the best games I have ever played. That it’s taking most of my spare time is both a blessing and a curse.

Despite how fun it was, July felt pretty hectic. August is looking like it will be nearly as busy, as summer tends to, but it would be nice to have a bit more down time… On to the numbers.


Overall, a decrease in productivity, but an increase in average productive time per day tells me that I was a bit more consistent. An average just under 5 hours likely means I was just shy of hitting that 5 hour mark on the days I missed it. I definitely felt like I got less done this month. The projects I’ve been working on have required a bit more solid focus, and that’s been tough to do through the summer. A bit of a vicious cycle, and it’s something I should really try to address in August.

  • Productivity pulse of 72 (-2)
  • Met All Productive Time goal 12/21 days
  • Average of 4h 55m (+16m) productive time per day

RescueTime Top 5 Categories:

  1. Software Development (29%)
  2. Communication & Scheduling (29%)
  3. Design & Composition (11%)
  4. Social Networking (8%)
  5. Business (6%)


My most productive day of the week seems to be fluctuating, but considering I’m more productive on cooler days, I think there’s some variation based on weather… On hot sunny days I think I’d just rather be at the beach than work! Looks like getting a lot of email still stresses me out.

  • I’m more productive on Tuesdays (18%) and Thursdays (18%)
  • I’m more productive when the day is cooler (14%)
  • I have more great days when I received fewer emails (15%)


Pretty decent increase in steps this month, but I think it’s a bit skewed… dancing in my seat at Taylor Swift definitely counted a lot of “steps”… As a general measure of activity, I think I was more active in July overall, so I suppose that’s fine. Roughly the same amount of sleep, though I should be careful to not continue this downward trend. I do notice when I regularly get less than 7 hours. I am a bit surprised by having spent an even lower portion of my income… I felt like I spent a bit more than usual, but it’s possible the transactions at the end of the month hadn’t posted before the 31st so Mint is counting them in August.

Regardless, now 2 months into my new student loan payment plan I’m feeling pretty okay with the adjustments, though I do find I’m hesitating a bit more before deciding to do things like buy lunch out. This is probably a healthy reflex, but I’d like to get back to a level of comfort where I don’t have to think so hard about choosing to buy a sub for lunch.

  • Average of 9,568 steps / day (+6%)
  • Average of 2,252 calories / day (-6.3%)
  • Average of 6h 58minutes of sleep / night (-1.2%)
  • Average weight of 139.1lbs (+0%)
  • Average body fat percentage of 11.5% (+0.8%)
  • I spent 82.3% of my income


My weight appears to go up on days I rate more highly… probably because I also eat more on those days! Food probably makes me happy. Unsurprisingly, better mood and more sleep go together. Contrary to probably most people these days, I appear to have better days when I post more on Facebook… Possibly because my Facebook posts have been more the interesting things I’m doing, rather than articles / information lately. I seem to get the most sleep on Mondays, maybe because getting back to work after a weekend is so tiring?

  • My weight is higher after I have fewer “okay” days (16%) and I have more “okay” days when I eat less (13%)
  • I have more great days when I get more steps (26%), and have a better day when I get more sleep (12%)
  • (Shockingly) I have more great days when I post more on Facebook (25%)
  • I spend more time asleep on Mondays (11%)

August’s Focus

  1. Finish my passport application

I printed my passport application, but now I need to actually finish it. By the time I get home in the evening I just never think about it — I need to get it done.

  1. Make an investment in my health

I actually started this in July, but need to remain committed to it. I wanted to make a simple investment in being healthier, so in looking at easy changes, I decided to add more fiber to my diet. Because I’ve tracked everything I eat for a few years, I can see that I average just 16 grams of fiber a day; roughly half of the recommended amount. Fiber is good for you for a whole host of reasons, so I decided to get a little extra with psyllium husk powder. The taste is not very good, but on the days I’ve had it, I do notice that my stomach doesn’t quite feel as bad as it usually does when I abuse it with a few cups of coffee. For now, this seems like a real easy thing to continue to do.

  1. Do the exercises in my planner

I’m re-adding this focus to the month because I do still believe a physical planner will help me feel more organized if I can make it a habit to actually use it. Using the Passion Planner as designed is the best way to figure out if its format will actually be helpful to me, so I want to take the 30 minutes one evening to fill it out properly.

The summer is really flying by… I have been late on reviews before, but it’s been a while since I’ve just flat out missed one. Despite being busy, I am enjoying the warmer months. Here’s to a solid August. Until next time, friends!