Monthly Review: August 2016
About 3 min reading time
This post was migrated from my previous blog managed by an old CMS. Some parts may be broken or poorly formatted, images may be missing, etc. Feel free to report an issue.
I'm still shocked that August is over. This month flew by unbelievably fast. Overall, it was a pretty good one!
- Productivity pulse of 56 (240.2 hours logged) (+0)
- Average of 7h 22m of sleep each night (+1.1%)
- Average calories of 2,391 (+6.6%)
- Average of 2,852 steps a day (-40%)
- Money spent: 73% of income
- Books read: 1 (+1)
- Blog posts written: 2 (+1)
- I tweet more when I wake up earlier (27%)
- I complete more tasks when I wake up earlier (39%)
- I’m more productive when it’s Wednesday (32%)
- I check in to Chipotle more when I have a worse day (32%)
- I spend more time asleep when I go to bed earlier (58%) and when I wake up later (41%)
- I have more good days when I go to bed later (19%)
Rescuetime top 5 categories:
- Software Development (35%)
- Social Networking (17%)
- Entertainment (11%)
- Communication & Scheduling (11%)
- News & Opinion (7%)
I’ll start off by saying that my goal to re-establish a habit of reading daily has failed miserably. I managed to uphold that for about 3 days, which was long enough to finish the book I was in the middle of, but not enough to reform the habit. I finally finished Design for Real Life by Eric Meyer and Sara Wachter-Boetcher and I have to say it was excellent. It’s given me a lot to consider, and it feels especially relevant now as I’m in the middle of a huge redesign project at work. I highly recommend it if you’re someone who has any input at all on a product other people use.
I also want to take a second to call out the Exist insight about Chipotle because I think it’s hilarious. Apparently, I don’t feel great about days I go to Chipotle. I very much like Chipotle, but now I’m curious if I feel bad about the day because I ate Chipotle, or if Chipotle is my reward for dealing with a bad day. Maybe it’s something to pay attention to.
I’m a bit surprised that my productivity pulse is the same as last month because I’ve finally started hitting a real stride at work. I’m finally figuring out how to organize my myriad of projects to keep track of them all (thanks Todoist!). What I need to get better at is putting the little one-off tasks that pop up throughout the week into Todoist, even if I check them off right away that way I have a record of having done them and Exist can do a bit more magic with that. The Todoist integration is new, so my task-related correlations don’t have much data to work with, so I’m curious to see where they’ll go. I did, however, log way more time in Rescuetime this month. A big flaw with Rescuetime is it’s only able to detect activity on your computer based on mouse or keyboard input so it doesn’t capture time I spend playing video games, where most of the time I’m using an XBox controller. It did log the time I spent playing Cities: Skylines though, as I use a mouse for that (which is a big reason my time logged is so much higher this month, I think).
I’m also happy to see that I keep managing to get more sleep. I feel like I stay up far too late, often not getting to bed before midnight, but I’m still averaging an increasing amount of sleep, so I guess I’m doing alright. It’s interesting that I spend more time asleep when I go to bed earlier, though. I’m not sure if there’s a correlation there with wake up time or not, so I can’t tell if my sleep quality is better when I go to bed earlier, or if I’m just spending more time in bed asleep. Either way, it probably wouldn’t hurt to get to bed a bit sooner. (It also wouldn't hurt to move a little more. I averaged fewer than 3,000 steps a day this month... ouch.)
Finally, I published a second blog post this month which felt pretty good. It's a reflection on graduating, and it's a post I actualy started back in June and finally finished this month. I’ve received a lot of great feedback from it, too. That honestly surprised me a bit, because I practically didn’t edit it. I gave it a quick look for spelling and grammar mistakes but that’s about it. In re-reading it, I can’t help but be disappointed that it fell short of what I was hoping for. I had plenty of outside sources that reinforced a few of my points, which would elevate them beyond my mere opinions. The piece is already pretty long though, and where I ended up taking it I feel it would be difficult to piece those sources back in. It may deserve a follow-up post, and that’s something I’m going to consider for this month.
I’m also going to take a crack at putting my nose in a book a little more often. But as I’ve found over the past few months, it’s difficult to actually follow through on these things I say I want to do. As you can see, I still haven’t adjusted the format of these reviews like I said I wanted to. On the plus side, at least this one was published on time.