“The future leaders are those who make a habit of keeping journals when they’re young. ” Journals of journeys. Material for reflection, for considering your self with the wisdom of your older self. A wonderful remedy for the unavoidable human tendency to forget the bad and to “misremember.” Also, fabulous material for disqualifying your future self from public office, if that’s your thing.
You know how I love my organization systems (and there have been more in the past). Following from I call the idea cascade, I developed a new system. For the first time in my life I’ve consistently followed my system. This post serves to describe this system and the benefits and challenges I’ve discovered from using it these last few months.
The system is currently focused on Goals and Actions, but has not yet explicitly included the higher Purpose/Meaning level. The tools used are Todoist and Google
Docs Drive, in particular a Form. In a nutshell: I define quarterly Goals, record my progress daily and review my progress weekly and monthly. I use a to-do list to keep track of the Actions I must take to reach my goals. This system provides enough detail and data to satisfy my mildly obsessive tendencies, but also allows for plenty of freedom and flexibility so that it doesn’t stifle me and kill joy. It’s pretty neat.
Heh. So I did it. I made the decision. And, startlingly, it was a lot easier than I expected (though still a hard thing to do, it didn’t feel impossible). I guess the desire to leave really had been slowly and quietly building up. Now here’s a brief update on that experience.
First, I immediately forgot that I had made such a decision. Two days later I had a cup of hot chocolate in the morning and some Hershey’s in the afternoon. Two days after that, a chocolate milkshake and chocolate froyo. I caught myself a few hours after the fact. Interesting to see how the habits I built up still had their full momentum. I’m happy to report that I didn’t beat myself up over the slip-ups at all. They’re to be expected. They’re reminders of the decision I made and proof that it was the right decision. Such mindless consumption is one of the things that drove me away.
The withdrawal symptoms are almost nonexistent. Replacing chocolate with other snacks hasn’t been too hard, and finding a replacement only rarely felt necessary. We’re still only a week or so into this thing, so there’s no telling what’s ahead. But if I had to guess from what I’ve seen, it’s going to be smooth sailing. So we can add one more thing I hate about chocolate: the way it made me feel I would have difficulty living without it. The minor difficulty I’ve had leaving it is a drop in the bucket compared to the difficulty and pain that embracing chocolate brought me.
I’m loving this new stage. Things are better, and they seem to be getting even better. Life is good for this guy.