on-going mostly unedited stream of thoughts

2014: Consistency

Having written about 2013 yesterday, for the first day of 2014 I would like to spend a bit of time to write about what I would like to focus on in the oncoming year, if not years.

As I wrote yesterday I never really had the space to seriously think about how I want to develop as a person. It is like being the product manager of yourself, there are a thousand things we can attempt to do, but what are the priorities and how do we execute?

One of the biggest lessons I have learned for the past couple of years is the power of consistency. When an action becomes consistent, it no longer requires friction and the benefits start to compound. I have much better energy levels than I have had my entire life, and I am pretty certain that is the result of being very mindful of my energy cycles. I am not only referring to physical energy here, what mental, physical and emotional energy combines to, is the energy to create.

This energy to create, will be paramount to my work, my life and my aspirations. I am influenced by Warren Buffett’s Snowball and I want to have my very own snowball. Momentum and consistency is key. So how can I get better at pursuing momentum and maintaining consistency?

Things I do and want to do more of

I want to be writing and reading even more than I did in 2013. People tend to attribute productivity with time, i.e. the more you work, the more you produce. I wouldn’t speak for everybody, but personally I have found reading and writing exercises my brain. The impact is not obvious but accumulative. I have no doubt that they influence the quality of my thought and work on a daily basis.

Things I sort of do and need more consistency

More mindful eating, exercise and meditation. I have started to do these somewhat regularly in the past year, but I have found myself “taking breaks” in between. I make the tradeoff of wanting to experience faster gratification in return for less energy. It was difficult for me initially to keep off carbs at first, being brought up in an Asian culture meant I grew up eating white rice everyday.

However, recently I have found myself to think that I crave for carbs, only to not enjoy the actual eating experience anymore. I still love pastries though. But the key is not to be extreme and just put in a little more thought in my food choices. I think of the mental fog I experience each time I eat these carbs and it puts me off a little more.

It used to be hard for me to even think of exercising, until it became obvious that it is difficult to feel energetic when cells in my body are not having any movement. The body lives and breathes with oxygen coursing through and it is difficult to have fresh oxygen when we hardly move in rooms full of people.

Someone at Medium told us, if athletes exercise to keep their body fit, then we as thinkers should meditate to keep our minds fit.

Things I hardly do and should start doing

Keep on learning something new on a regular basis. A new programming language, or even hand lettering or learning to draw better. I would like to cook more too, forgetting that cooking is a way of expending creative energy.

After being on my first roadtrip and also some local SF exploring, I belatedly remembered how much I enjoy being out in nature. I hope to do more of these, to fill my mind with new experiences and sights.

I would like to spend a little more time on my social hacking projects too, a baby step forward is better than none, I would like to remind myself.

Things I am afraid of and will attempt to do

There’s only one thing on my list here and I will be a very happy person in 2015 if I have made some progress on this, if any. I would like to be better at speaking in front of people, even if it is a small group. I just don’t enjoy having very little space to think before communicating. I think the problem there is a somewhat huge disconnect with the speed of my thought and my verbal articulation skills. Some people thrive on attention, I start to disintegrate.

This is my way of putting myself out there.

Consistency is key

I would like to make these built-in into my life, as part of my regular routine. It is more lasting to spread out an effort in small chunks than to have one intense effort and finding it difficult to return to that intensity again.

Keeping my energy consistent and optimal will provide the foundation for the work I want to accomplish.

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