Productivity thread - The event edition

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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23363

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

Note: this post is basically a guide on a more advanced and focused "to-do list" that I've put together without any real intent on structure, but just gradually built up that way in the last few weeks and from previous experiences in trying to be productive in different capacities.

It goes in to quite a lot of detail to those who want real in-depth practical ways of how I do things at the moment and note everything, but if you want a simple idea of how to begin, then just read the last paragraph also in Bold.


I've actually been self isolated for like 3 weeks now because in the early stages of The Event I came in to contact with a suspected sufferer of The Event, so as a precaution I had to stay home. I can do some work from home but there's constant hurdles and there's a lot I can't do or communicate about, and now starting from next week everyone is staying at home anyway.

So I realised after a few days this could get really bad for me and had a strong feeling The Event will continue for some time and I will need to adapt to having nothing set out to do daily. I pretty much spend all my time half watching news and YouTube on TV and texting or communicating with people, I don't watch any films or TV shows regularly (I kinda have to force myself to do so) and although I'm reading books more, I still have to bring myself to do it (as much as I enjoy it once I actually start). I know everyone gets bored when there's too much time but I'm a particularly bad case as I'll explain.

Professionally I'm not bad at procrastinating, I enjoy getting things done promptly for work or if studying a work related course, but oddly enough hobbies- the thing that most people take to naturally, I procrastinate with those. There's a lot of different things I enjoy and have taken to, but I'd rather spend my free time casually doing nothing. Of course when hours go by or an entire day, there's a feeling of unsettling emptiness.

So anyway, I have a rather large A4 daily page diary that's meant for work, and each night I fill in an idea of what I want to achieve tomorrow, with some time frames in mind. It started off as a neat little idea with a few scribbles of To Do List type things, now only a few weeks later my diary is really detailed and each day I'm pushing myself a bit more to be on top of things (today's been kinda lazy though).

I'll explain more details about the diary after the list, which is to give you an idea of things I mean, a mixture of hobbies, and also things that are actually productive for work:

Courses-
Excel online course
Business management course (from a local college but it's suspended now, I'm going in to much more detail with it now we have a lot of time to, may as well)

Books-
Large nutrition book noted up (practically treating it like a course, looking up Quizzes at the end of each chapter to test myself)
Noting up 3 Books related to business/work- Dealing with people, Efficiency, Public Speaking
Reading at least one book of fiction or a general interest (if it's factual or recorded events, I'll write notes as well)

Music-
Guitar (focus on Theory, and signed up to a monthly technique magazine, so learning from the actual article in that)
Piano (also Theory in conjunction with guitar when possible)
Drums (getting past the Beginner stages of this)
Creating actual finished pieces on FL Studio

Fitness- (Total Fitness time per day aiming around 90mins, however the weight lifting program has some days where it's 90mins on that alone.)
Weight lifting- Doing a 10 Week Program (starting week 4), I now have a basic home gym which I can do 80-90% of exercises with, and the remaining I have some form of substitution exercises from the equipment I can work with
Cardio- got my exercise bike now, already had a running machine and rowing machine, but will try to run outside at least 2-3 times a week. Also use kettlebells, jump rope, punch bag (need to use this more I just remembered).
Football- I don't have that big of a garden but just doing keepy ups and chipping it against the wall can be a good warm up for working out, looked up some drills on youtube for close control and ball control which are already helping a lot, and I've been playing since I was a child
Golf- I was going 2-3 times a week for a full round, and about to get membership, they announced they are closed. I bought a net for driving the ball in to, and if I want to practice chipping the ball my parents have a large field behind their house which I used this week, the grass is nice and short for once so it's possible to do.

Miscellaneous-
Meditation- Twice daily usually 10mins each time.
Yoga- haven't started yet, but realising I'm not remotely flexible, beginning Monday and aiming for just 5mins each morning
Massage chair- this may seem silly but it's an example of something I feel great when doing, but often can't be assed, so it's a reminder to get it done and tick it off the list, 15mins, doesn't need to be every day
Shuffling Cards (learned some basic ideas on youtube and now I do it all the time when watching stuff)
Pool (it's actually my parents pool table, but they never use it so I don't know if they're expecting it back and it's a pain to move around, but I practice pool while I have something playing on my laptop or a podcast)
Cooking new recipes
Watch a film/TV show (yes I actually have to tell myself to do this, otherwise I won't bother) or a video game, haven't really done those recently yet but it would be a nice addition possibly for an hour every other day or so, in the evening

There's a few other small things probably but I'm bored of writing now, you get the idea.

More important than the examples is the way you set it up, having a Diary or To Do List is one thing, but it can be fairly useless over many days unless you have a real schedule. If you don't have an actual schedule you'll probably end up leaving a bunch of stuff to roll on to the next day, or (and arguably even worse) by late evening you'll realise you still have too much left to do, and things that are important to be learning properly you can end up cramming in at the end of the day, which is pointless.

The most boring stuff you start as soon as you wake up, I usually don't even shower straight away, get out of bed and start earning for half an hour, then shower, then another half hour of work, then make a coffee- everyone's different but most people retain info better with 30mins on and a 5min break, for the 5min break if you don't have a coffee to get or anything, just watch a short youtube video or whatever is "rewarding". And if for example studying in a 2 hour block devoted to just Excel for example, at the end of the 2 hours a slightly larger break of 10-15mins. Perhaps this seems like a ton of breaks for "productivity", but for example I've noted and learned loads of that Nutrition book before (like 3 years ago) and retained very little from hours of reading non-stop, and even though I'm getting through it slower now, I can explain everything I read and how it relates to other things I can hook it to.

But you do the most boring stuff first because after 8 hours sleeping your brain isn't exactly expecting the normal dopamine highs you get from being on your phone or even small things you don't realise that are stimulating, like being on this forum. It hardly feels like a "high" but compared to taking in often dull information and remembering it, seeing forum news can be interesting. Most people's problem would be social media of course, but I don't touch it really.

The diary I have is based on a work day, so it has actual core hours, with space beside each time to write notes. There's a sense of urgency when you see that you only have so much time to get a certain task done, and then also if you've given yourself too much time to do a task that turned out to not be very time consuming, you can relax a little which is nice, but still feel like you can get a head start on the next thing scheduled for 10am.

I also make little notes for general improvements, at the top of each Day I have time I went to bed, time I went to sleep (so I can guess how well I'm sleeping or if I'm using my phone when I should be focussed on sleep) as well as time I woke up, and time I got out of bed. I also aim to drink 4 litres of water a day, so I'll note beside 10:30am "1 L", and tick it off, 1:30pm "2 L", etc, I aim to get to 3 litres by around 4-5pm and my evening workout means I'll get towards the 4 litres or over naturally. Another one is if I aim to do 5 sets of pull ups/dips/push ups throughout the day (separate from my work out but I normally have that in mind if it's a Chest/Back focused work out anyway) and set 5 little markers throughout the day as a reminder.

Besides the "schedule" part of my Diary there's room to make general notes, and I make notes of anything major I felt I learned that day, and also anything that I feel I surprised myself by doing (reading an extra chapter of a book, doing extra cardio at the end of lifting, etc) as a bonus improvement. The meditation exercises I make particular notes on, as there's normally a focal theme of each meditation (through the Calm App) and I note if I felt I learned anything through it or even if I just felt more focused.

Progress Tracking - So in the Diary, at the start of each month there's a big page that shows each Date eg 1-31, and there's space to the right of each Date to leave a note. I use this to actually "mark" out of 10 how I feel I did that day, and leave a brief note as to why. An 8/10 would be that I achieved most things I had listed, as well as some extra bonuses, a 3/10 would be obviously disappointing, maybe I did my work out which is practically always the case, but only did 1-2 hours of other learning or something I didn't really want to do. If there is something that occupied my time that day which was unavoidable or knocked me off stride, I'll take that in to account, I'm not going to start intentionally neglecting people in my life so that I can keep my daily marking high, people and relationships still get priority (within reason).

And this sounds crazy, but you can't really reward yourself for things you wanted to do anyway (though I'd make an exception with weightlifting or cardio because that's just always an achievement, and represents a general mentality that's difficult to be consistent with) so for example if I have something left over from guitar I really wanted to pick up on the next day, and I spend 3 hours on it because I wanted to- well that's still positive, however I likely neglected things that I should also be focusing on. In my "marking" system (which is hardly scientific) I wouldn't put that 3 hours of guitar down as bumping me up from a 5/10 daily effort to an 8/10, because it's not like learning something difficult- it was 3 hours of mainly enjoyable practice (even if it's always a little frustrating). I tend to neglect Drums a lot more and as it's my newest instrument to focus on it's more frustrating, so if I spend 3 hours of intense focus and struggling through something "simple" on drums, then yes, that's a big effort.

So for me, watching a Film or TV show is part of my "to do" list, because I never do these things but often enjoy them when I actually bother to, it is still a chore for me to put it on and stick to concentrating on it. However for nearly everyone else I know, binge watching TV shows or putting on a film is something you like doing and would do anyway, you could hardly include watching 6 episodes on Netflix straight as a great effort, when you do this regardless out of enjoyment.

At the end of each week I simply tally up what I got out of 70, Monday was 7/10, Tuesday was 3/10 etc, so let's say I'd get around 45/70. If you're fairly strict on achieving things, that's actually not at all easy, and let's say without this system in place if I wasn't aware of it and just generally "know" I should be learning different things, I'd probably get like 15/70 if even.

But that weekly total keeps you somewhat aware daily, of how you are going to finish for the week, and an extra push on why it's important to not just sit at your desk sifting through your phone and randomly googling shit. You feel like you have much more of a purpose each day, possibly because you feel you can beat the previous week, or if you know you're averaging like 4/10 for the first 3 days, you try harder to put in a lot more effort at the end of the week to pull it back. If you've averaged more like 7/10, you're more encouraged to continue at this level.

Without that "weekly" tally, you could easily tend to say "y'know what fuck it, I'll start again Monday" and do absolutely nothing.

With practically nobody at my company now working I have very limited "work-from-home" work to do, and that takes up very little time each day now and it's getting to be almost nothing. So I have every day to focus on this sort of schedule, and it's amazing how much you can get done by only 4pm, and some days I'm still left wanting to do more. This is actually why I moved my work out to the evening from 1am, I'd have everything done by 6pm and was left doing too much or wanting to do too much, and it was hard to relax and I was actually getting exhausted overall and needed power naps randomly.

I've explained this to 3 other people in the last few weeks who are adopting something similar, one in particular hasn't been working for the last handful of months (she's deciding which country to live in, it's a long story but she really hates not having work) and was going crazy, and she's felt this has already helped a lot in structuring her day and feeling that sense of purpose

But if this all seems too exhausting to even begin thinking about, then simply start off how I did, I simply wrote like 2-3 things, had a very relaxed time frame to achieve them in (eg Excel course Week 4 from 8am, Nutrition Book Ch. 5 at 11:30am) and you should naturally find that you're pushing yourself to squeeze in extra opportunities to apply more effort to certain things.

The most important thing isn't just being aware of what's "To-Do", but the Schedule is probably more important than the task itself, just having a sense of urgency and purpose when you wake up, that you need to get certain things done by a certain time.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23369

Post by blackg » 3 months ago

Thanks Rudi. As a drug and alcohol counselor you must struggle not seeing your patients face to face.

But you are making a difference.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23370

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

blackg wrote:
3 months ago
Thanks Rudi. As a drug and alcohol counselor you must struggle not seeing your patients face to face.

But you are making a difference.
I put a lot of effort in to this topic and you have to be the first fucking moron to reply with your dumb pointless bullshit.

It's like 10% of your desperately reaching jokes are even remotely funny, what the hell was this? It's got no relevance to anything.

Fuck it, nobody cares anyway.
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#23371

Post by blackg » 3 months ago

Rudiger wrote:
3 months ago
I put a lot of effort in to this topic and you have to be the first fucking moron to reply with your dumb pointless bullshit.

It's like 10% of your desperately reaching jokes are even remotely funny, what the hell was this? It's got no relevance to anything.

Fuck it, nobody cares anyway.
No, I do care, mate. I read through it and I admire your dedication and structure. In fact, I admired it so much that it caused me to look inward and intimidated me.

I'm fucking jealous of your guitar playing!!!
I've always wanted to do more on guitar but I will never get past this slightly post-beginner stage that I embody. It pisses me off!
So I guess that's why I made one of my bad quips, as I have nothing constructive to offer this thread.

Sorry mate.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23372

Post by rclark » 3 months ago

This is a good free link, if anybody is interested in learning to distinguish pitches.

http://artatom.com/music/Perfect_Pitch.html

For myself, I definitely don't have perfect pitch, but I am able to able to figure out a few
notes, usually on first try. I have trouble with B and sometimes G for some reason.

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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23373

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

blackg wrote:
3 months ago
No, I do care, mate. I read through it and I admire your dedication and structure. In fact, I admired it so much that it caused me to look inward and intimated me.

I'm fucking jealous of your guitar playing!!!
I've always wanted to do more on guitar but I will never get past this slightly post-beginner stage that I embody. It pisses me off!
So I guess that's why I made one of my bad quips, as I have nothing constructive to offer this thread.

Sorry mate.
You don't know anything about my guitar playing, for all you know I've barely picked the thing up and I want to learn Theory. Do you know what goes hand in hand? Being disingenuous and using the term "mate" to reassure someone.

You won't get any better at guitar because you're a retard. I'll put together another productivity thread- retard edition, to teach you how to stop drooling on yourself and making below average forum jokes even though that's literally your reason for existing here.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23374

Post by Johnson » 3 months ago

Good to see someone doing something.

I've noticed one or two people I know have more or less fallen into a depression. They just lay in bed and watch netflix hour after hour waiting for this corona thing to go away.
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#23375

Post by blackg » 3 months ago

Johnson wrote:
3 months ago
Good to see someone one doing something.

I've noticed one or two people I know have more or less fallen into a depression. They just lay in bed and watch netflix hour after hour waiting for this corona thing to go away.
Well this virus isn't going anywhere fast. Johnson, do you think the cure is worse than the disease?

Added in 7 minutes 42 seconds:
Rudiger wrote:
3 months ago
You don't know anything about my guitar playing, for all you know I've barely picked the thing up and I want to learn Theory. Do you know what goes hand in hand? Being disingenuous and using the term "mate" to reassure someone.

You won't get any better at guitar because you're a retard. I'll put together another productivity thread- retard edition, to teach you how to stop drooling on yourself and making below average forum jokes even though that's literally your reason for existing here.
Okay, but I do know a bit about your guitar playing. I know you're advanced enough not to have to drop a song down and play it in a different key. I do this sometimes for my voice, but also so I can stick to the basic standard chords (then I may use a cappo).
If a song features a prominent F barre chord, for example, I will drop it down a step so that chord now becomes an E, and so on.

There is some chords that I literally can't get my hand around: a B7 add13 (no5) for example. Killer!
And I know you're advanced enough to NOT do this
Take care.
Last edited by blackg 3 months ago, edited 4 times in total.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23377

Post by Johnson » 3 months ago

blackg wrote:
3 months ago
Well this virus isn't going anywhere fast. Johnson, do you think the cure is worse than the disease?
I'm really not good with virology and science so I cant give a good answer to that question.

I'd speculate that if the countries worst hit could shut down for 4 weeks and kill the spread then they can tentatively begin life again under careful guidelines and that wouldnt be so bad.

The consequence of carrying on like everything is fine and waiting for herd immunity would obliterate the health service and kill millions.

In short, i'd say, you can rebuild an economy but you cant rebuild the dead.

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#23378

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

Johnson wrote:
3 months ago
In short, i'd say, you can rebuild an economy but you cant rebuild the dead.
A broken economy leads to "the dead" and has killed more people historically than any virus, war or genocide.
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#23379

Post by blackg » 3 months ago

It a balancing act that we have to get right, which is difficult in these uncharted waters.

Economy Vs Freedom of movement.
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#23380

Post by Johnson » 3 months ago

Rudiger wrote:
3 months ago
A broken economy leads to "the dead" and has killed more people historically than any virus, war or genocide.
Then the government must plan accordingly and to ensure this doesnt occur.

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#23381

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

blackg wrote:
3 months ago
It a balancing act that we have to get right, which is difficult in these uncharted waters.

Economy Vs Freedom of movement.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23383

Post by Admin » 3 months ago

Yes I read it all :p. You are undoubtedly going to make some progress but what I'm mainly concerned about here is how sustainable that strategy is going to be for... a human being. You use the word 'force" a lot and sure, there will be moments where it's necessary to force yourself to practice something, but the best way to do this in a healthy manner is to have a 'why'. The more reasons you have about why you're doing something in different area (personal, social, cosmic, etc.), the better.

Forcing yourself out of sheer will, sort of a "don't be a pussy and just push through!" can backfire and make you burnout. There will always be moments where we overextend ourselves in an unhealthy without realizing it, and I found that the best remedy to that is to shut everything off, go mediate and combine it with a great dose of self-soothing, of self-compassion until that slight burnout feeling gets processed.

So I'm going to try to explain my approach to productivity. As I've said, having a why is crucial, and you can already guess what my ultimate reason for doing anything would be: "does it participate in the Glory of God?" If it doesn't, if it sends me down, if I get no enjoyment (or worse if it depresses me) from it despite trying over and over again, I stop. I think it's important to start off with determining what you don't want to do.

For example, I will not do something for its own sake, like learning to code, all I know about coding I learned as a byproduct of trying to achieve a very clear final idea I had in my mind, like everything that was built into my websites. The purpose is having the users of my website enjoy a particular feature. In my experience, even only that will take a huge chunk of your time, but looking back, none of it felt wasted.

While the times I sat down to try to learn things for its own sake, like a book about PHP, I felt like shit and like it was all wasted afterwards. I did it out of this stupid idea that I had to reinvent the wheel and to have that extra line (or here just a word) on my resume. Also when knowledge is not applied, if will quickly fade from your memory.

I take the same approach in other areas: graphic design, music, spirituality, etc. "What do I want to achieve?" and it has to be well above motivations like "I want to impress people", that goal will only take you so far and make you dependent on other people's opinions. For me, it's about humbly asking God how to manifest beauty, truth and love. And doing that often means that you have to sacrifice yourself, especially in this modern world, because you won't get the answer you want to hear, the one that's going to get you superficial admiration and likes on social media or in society in general.

Now once you've figured out the why, you'll need a how. And writing everything down by hand has facilitated and sped up my progress in many areas. Writing by hand apparently uses a different part of your brain which can produce more profound and lasting changes in your being. It also forces you to slow down compared to writing on a keyboard.

Going slowly and mindfully is also important, and sensing your limits, just like after an intense session at the gym, your muscles will need time to recover, and it's imperative that you treat your mind with the same care. Downtime and rest are as crucial as the active learning moments. I think working in cycles is the best way to go about it, intense work followed by rest and leisure. And again, I think one has to see apply this on different scales, meaning that you can do something like have a week of only leisure every month.

Doing that properly will require tracking by writing it down. It's important that you take a breath, a moment to recognize that "I did this", just like you self-soothe when you go too far and get frustrated, you have to reward yourself even for the tiniest amount of progress you've managed to make, and all along, remember that no matter how insignificant it seems, it will always be infinitely better than zero, because at least you're still trying.

That's the main trap in bettering your productivity, if you don't properly integrate the different elements I just mentioned, you can really sink deep into frustration, depression and dread to the point that you can't even be bothered to try anymore. It's a tight balance but I believe each of us have the power to get this right in our own lives, to find our own callings and our own pace to ascend the ladder in every area in which we're trying to better ourselves.
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Productivity thread - The event edition

#23384

Post by Rudiger » 3 months ago

Admin wrote:
3 months ago
Yes I read it all :p. You are undoubtedly going to make some progress but what I'm mainly concerned about here is how sustainable that strategy is going to be for... a human being. You use the word 'force" a lot and sure, there will be moments where it's necessary to force yourself to practice something, but the best way to do this in a healthy manner is to have a 'why'. The more reasons you have about why you're doing something in different area (personal, social, cosmic, etc.), the better.

Forcing yourself out of sheer will, sort of a "don't be a pussy and just push through!" can backfire and make you burnout. There will always be moments where we overextend ourselves in an unhealthy without realizing it, and I found that the best remedy to that is to shut everything off, go mediate and combine it with a great dose of self-soothing, of self-compassion until that slight burnout feeling gets processed.

So I'm going to try to explain my approach to productivity. As I've said, having a why is crucial, and you can already guess what my ultimate reason for doing anything would be: "does it participate in the Glory of God?" If it doesn't, if it sends me down, if I get no enjoyment (or worse if it depresses me) from it despite trying over and over again, I stop. I think it's important to start off with determining what you don't want to do.

For example, I will not do something for its own sake, like learning to code, all I know about coding I learned as a byproduct of trying to achieve a very clear final idea I had in my mind, like everything that was built into my websites. The purpose is having the users of my website enjoy a particular feature. In my experience, even only that will take a huge chunk of your time, but looking back, none of it felt wasted.

While the times I sat down to try to learn things for its own sake, like a book about PHP, I felt like shit and like it was all wasted afterwards. I did it out of this stupid idea that I had to reinvent the wheel and to have that extra line (or here just a word) on my resume. Also when knowledge is not applied, if will quickly fade from your memory.

I take the same approach in other areas: graphic design, music, spirituality, etc. "What do I want to achieve?" and it has to be well above motivations like "I want to impress people", that goal will only take you so far and make you dependent on other people's opinions. For me, it's about humbly asking God how to manifest beauty, truth and love. And doing that often means that you have to sacrifice yourself, especially in this modern world, because you won't get the answer you want to hear, the one that's going to get you superficial admiration and likes on social media or in society in general.

Now once you've figured out the why, you'll need a how. And writing everything down by hand has facilitated and sped up my progress in many areas. Writing by hand apparently uses a different part of your brain which can produce more profound and lasting changes in your being. It also forces you to slow down compared to writing on a keyboard.

Going slowly and mindfully is also important, and sensing your limits, just like after an intense session at the gym, your muscles will need time to recover, and it's imperative that you treat your mind with the same care. Downtime and rest are as crucial as the active learning moments. I think working in cycles is the best way to go about it, intense work followed by rest and leisure. And again, I think one has to see apply this on different scales, meaning that you can do something like have a week of only leisure every month.

Doing that properly will require tracking by writing it down. It's important that you take a breath, a moment to recognize that "I did this", just like you self-soothe when you go too far and get frustrated, you have to reward yourself even for the tiniest amount of progress you've managed to make, and all along, remember that no matter how insignificant it seems, it will always be infinitely better than zero, because at least you're still trying.

That's the main trap in bettering your productivity, if you don't properly integrate the different elements I just mentioned, you can really sink deep into frustration, depression and dread to the point that you can't even be bothered to try anymore. It's a tight balance but I believe each of us have the power to get this right in our own lives, to find our own callings and our own pace to ascend the ladder in every area in which we're trying to better ourselves.
You're a fat alcoholic mess.

Nah I'll read this and reply later.
Look, fat...

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