On humanity, values, relativity and Ayn Rand.

Many years ago, there was a young boy who discovered a writer called Ayn Rand. It wasn’t the first time this name showed itself. He knew about it for a while, even if he misspelled it Any Rand.

He knew that smart people read Rand. That Atlas Shrugged is the kind of book read by millionaires enjoying Havana cigars on yachts. That it was actually mentally stimulating compared to other books that were simply hard to read (I’m looking at you “Thus Spoke Zarathustra”!”).

So he read it. He fell in love with the characters there and the entire philosophy of objectivism. Atlas Shrugged for an introvert with an IQ of almost 150 was like crack cocaine. Addictive and impossible to put down.

(And here will come comments that Atlas Shrugged is a simple philosophy, that it is usually read by stupid people who are lost and so on. Keep your comments to yourself).

From that moment onwards, he … it changed my life. And now, about eight years ago, ironically, I am trying to reverse the negative effects that Atlas Shrugged and objectivism in general had on my life.

Let me explain. Atlas Shrugged is amazing, if you don’t watch it B&H but rather in many shades of grey. 90% of the book is amazing and yes, selfishness, that kind, where you respect values, where you cherish values and where everything is causality is amazingly accurate.

To be honest, even if I don’t personally like Rand (I admire her genius but in some ways, I consider her too self-righteous with a sense of over entitlement.), I find this one of the best philosophy books ever written, next to Meditations by Marcus Aurelius.

But then comes the 10%. That 10% that works perfectly fine for you if you have no feelings, no conscious, no emotions, nothing. If you are a robot. But if you are not, it teaches you to supresses all of this, to see you as a tool to get from A to B, forgetting that you are the goal in itself and not something outside of you.

It kind of teaches you to be a sociopath until you realize that as a sociopath you may gain money, wealth and fame but you’ll feel awful in the end. To be more specific, if you want to be special, like in Rand’s book, you need to be alone. And six years later after I’ve first read Atlas Shrugged, I’ve decided that it is not worth it.

Yes, money is cool. Cool clothes are awesome. Vacations in Paris are very nice to have. Cuban cigars are great (I have one in my bags for two weeks now, haven’t lighted it yet) but real happiness comes from human connection. From genuine human connection, where you are vulnerable and the other party, in this case defined as the opposite sex, usually girlfriend, fiance or wife is vulnerable too.

It comes when you give love and you receive love and you don’t take the strategic game of chess in your personal life. I admit it, in business, it pays to be a sociopath. Risk is rewarded, bold moves are rewarded and cold rational beings are rewarded. So I have nothing against it.

But being a sociopathic father … or husband … or brother … or close friend … will hurt both the person next to you and yourself. Why?

Because it is not a zero sum game anymore. Business and most competitive fields are zero sum games. This can be easily defined as “We are two. There is only one seat. One will win and one will lose”. This can be translated in market share, clients, stock value and so on.

And this is reality. Yes, most of business is a zero sum game, no matter if you accept it or not. But human relationships are not. While in an abstract manner they can be (one being being wanted by several actors, therefore one winning and several losing), it generally is not.

And even if there are laws of economics governing everything (for example, offer and demand in romantic – sexual setting) this doesn’t mean that everything should be reduced to these laws. It would lead to a nihilistic point of view and while it is accurate, it is also very depressing.

And if something is accurate or truthful, this doesn’t mean that it is also good for you. If a lie serves you better, living in a lie, than in the truth, then go for the lie. The end goal is happiness, not some absolute search for the truth. You’re not a philosopher and your life is not some book on metaphysics.

I’ve observed this especially when it come about religion. I was talking with this very intelligent and attractive member of the opposite sex about the need for God. I am an atheist, she is not.

She admitted it that even if she can’t prove the existence of a God and I may be very well right, this doesn’t mean that she wants to give up on the belief. The belief brings her comfort and inner peace and the downside is limited to non-existent. In other words, she has more to gain from this than to lose.

And while zealots may say that this is brainwashing or cowardice, I find it very interesting. She admits this, she doesn’t base her belief on any irrational point of view but rather, just prefers to believe because it is easier for her and it brings her more rewards than if she would not.

If you think about it, this is 100% logical and in some way, very, very mature.

So since then I’ve started to try to implement this belief too. It is nice to see the world in terms of absolutes, of A and -A, of 1 and 0, but either our mental capacity is too limited or the world comes in many shades of grey, not absolute. Good doesn’t always win, bad doesn’t always get punished. Love doesn’t always win and strong people sometimes do suffer. But the fact that there is a negative out there, it doesn’t mean that there isn’t also a positive.

This was Rand’s flaw – her fixed views on everything. They made sense and they were heroic in nature but it was like saying that there are only two geometrical shapes in this world, squares and circles. To miss everything else, from diamonds to triangles. To say that there is only absolute good and only absolute evil and to miss the 500 shades of grey between them.

I think that you really mature when you realize this – when you stop looking for perfection, for white or black. When you realize that nobody is perfect, everyone is flawed in a way but in their flawless, they are perfect. When you realize that life is what it is and it will give you both good and bad things, that there is no such thing as “it should be” but only “it is”.

In an ideal world, things would go in a different manner and that manner would be our expectations. But that’s in a different world. Our expectations don’t really influence reality and just because you think of a thing to be good or bad, this doesn’t make it so.

And to be honest, there is no real indicator of what is good or bad. Intentions are not an indicator since results matter. And results are circumstantial, what is good for you may be bad for me. Character traits against, are not good or bad, only serving or not serving a purpose.

So, flexibility my friends, flexibility.

Best regards,
Razvan

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You know what takes real courage?

Keeping stable and on destination when things are falling apart from you. That’s when men are separated from boys and winners from losers. Where everything around is burning, when resources are low and it takes all your creativity to achieve your goal, when you enter a kind of fight or flight response and your entire body has only one goal – to win.

That’s what I’ve seen in all the people I admire. They don’t lose their focus. They stay calm under stress. They can be shot at and I bet they keep their BPM at 60. They know that if a part of the castle falls, this doesn’t mean that the rest does not matter anymore. No. They tend to it if they can, if they can not, they say “screw it” and start building another one.

The real courageous people were first lone wolves, then developed into leaders. They’ve learned how to strive on their own, through their own forces, their own strength, their own abilities and then through leadership.

The real courage is to be able to move forward even when it hurts, knowing that it will hurt more if you don’t take care of the rest of the things. That sometimes in life you can’t win but you can choose the degree to which you lose. And losing 10% is better than losing 75%.

The real courage is to accept defeat when it happens and right now, develop a new target, a new destination, knowing that you may lose the battle but you can still win the war.

The real courage is to play even when you are uncertain and when you don’t have a security net to catch you if you fall.

The real courage is to keep moving forward when it is simpler to give up. To put one foot in front of another and to strive to do your damn best. That’s real courage my friends.

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My 22th day KPI experiment update

Well, it works. In essence, that’s all you need to know.

And if you are curious why it works, the reason is simple. By focusing on some metrics, you’ll create some outcomes in your life. These outcomes are anything but predictable yet they happen. In other words, many times I don’t see how I can connect A with B but by focusing on the metric at hand, it connects automatically.

Consider your goal being gold in the ground. Your KPIs are the rate at which you mine towards that goal. Eventually, generally sooner than later, you will accomplish your goal simply because you’ve put the right effort in.

Apart from that, I’ve noticed some very interesting trends and observations:

  1. Parkinson’s law works so well. If you have X resources, you’ll consume exactly X resources. If you have one day to accomplish a goal, it will take one goal but if you have just two hours, then you’ll most likely find a way to accomplish it within those two hours.
  2. Good day, I’m OK, bad day, I’m OK, with the addition that no matter if it is a good or a bad day, your effort still gets tracked.
  3. It is hard to focus on every metric possible. Sometime you focus only on productivity. Other times on fitness. For now, I’ve decided to focus on a main metric, even if the others suffer. At some point in time (since this will become permanent, yet, I guess I’ll tweak some aspects of it once it is all completed) I will be able to do all of them. Right now, I can’t advance in more than two metrics at a time.
  4. Life follows cycles. If I put everything in a graph, I can see about the same pattern, spikes then going down then spikes again, instead of a straight line. I’m not surprised about this. The key is to keep the distance between the spikes equal. You can have a good streak, you can have a bad streak, but the average should be good. In other words, amazing things, victories, should not happen once every two weeks but smaller victories every few days. Or a huge one that accounts for several smaller ones.

That’s about it. If you haven’t tried this already, I encourage you to do so (you can find other posts about this on this blog).

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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The Myth Of Time Management

I don’t think that there is such thing as a person that is not productive.

We are all productive. You can be productive in watching TV. You can be productive in posting on Facebook or chatting there. You can be productive in washing your dishes.

Productivity exists and it exists at an optimum level. It is a tool. Unless you are in a coma, you are productive. The problem is that you are productive on the wrong things. Sure, if you would be paid $50/hour watching TV, then that could be considered as productive but chances are that you should do something else instead of that.

It all comes down to how you invest your time or better said, on what. You have 24 hours and based on how many alarms you have in the morning, you have between 18 and 15 hours available to invest.

And if you invest them into the wrong things, you won’t have time to invest them into the right one. It is as simple as that. You don’t need a 300 page book on time management to get this point. If you spend one hour talking to someone just for the sake of talking, you’ll have one hour less exercising, working or studying.

If you invest four hours into watching that TV show, you’ll have four hour less of time to spend with your loved ones. It is actually very simple when you put it this way. You have time, the problem is that you don’t invest it into the right manner.

Almost anything in life can be quantified by how much time you invest in it. Do you want a new iPhone 6? Maybe this means 20 hours of focused work. Do you want that vacation in Tenerife? It will cost you 50 hours of work to get the money, 5 hours of planning and the downtime of the vacation itself (even if in this case, the vacation becomes a priority, otherwise each goal would carry an ownership cost that would exceed what you’ve paid, in time and money, to acquire. So let’s not take it to the extreme).

Have you’ve spent time on Facebook? Was it worth it? Because that time may had cost you a few tens of dollars or good-will from someone you love or a few new bricks in your education.

Time is always available, until you die that is. And if you want things in life, you need to invest it properly. Do you want to have an amazing partner, significant other? This requires time. Time in investing in yourself, in becoming the person that attracts that kind of person, in dating, developing a relationship and so on. The time is there, you can use it or you can not. The choice is yours.

So in the end, time management comes not to to-dos and calendars. It comes to a simple question …

“In what am I’m going to invest my time and is this activity the one that brings the best ROI for me at this moment?”

And the ROI differs. Sometimes you need to work like a slave to have a lot of money. Yet other times, the best ROI is to kick back, light a cigarette, put some music, some brandy and enjoy the moment. Sometimes it is to read a good book while other times it is to help someone move his or her furniture. It depends. But everything you do right now, EVERYTHING is an investment in your future.

Are you a good investor and are you going to get huge returns from your time or are you an awful one?

Best regards,
Razvan

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Five Days To Jump-Start Your Day …

While it is not scientific, the start of the day will usually determine how the rest of the day will be. If you start your day in the right manner, you can set up the pace for being successful, whatever that means to you.

Here are five methods that are PROVED (in my own life that is) to work.

Method #1 – Start your day early. One day, I’ll wake up at 04:00 every single morning. I can’t wait for that day to come. Right now my wake up hour oscillates between 06:00 and 08:00. When you wake up early, everything is quiet, your significant other is still sleeping, the kids are sleeping (if you have kids) and you have time to focus. It gives you a few good hours to prepare.

Method #2 – Get outside ASAP in the morning. I like the morning air. It is a bit cold, no matter in what season I am and it acts as a mental and emotional tonic. Thirty minutes outside in the morning and few things can disturb your inner calm afterwards.

Method #3 – Exercise. Ideally, go to the gym. Thirty minutes on the treadmill or some weight training can and will get your heart rate up. This in turn will boost your energy.

Method #4 – Spend time with your significant other. Breakfast together, sex or simply spending 30 – 60 minutes together will fortify the relationship and will give both of you a great mood. This alone can change your entire day.

Method #5 – Do some work in the morning. There is no greater feeling than to know that you’ve got some important stuff done before 10:00. That’s why as soon as I get home from my walk outside or even after grooming, I’ll be working for one hour.

What are your own methods for improving your mornings

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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What A Soap Bubble Taught Me About Life & Inter-Connected Systems

Today, while I was taking a bath, I saw something that filled another piece in this puzzle called life.

It was a soap bubble. And I carefully watched it for over 10 minutes how it moved around the bathroom, without once hitting a wall, without once landing in water, simply moving, in a controlled chaos, without any real direction but within a pattern.

What does this mean?

This is our life here on Earth. We think we are moving in a straight line but we are not. But we are not acting in a random manner either. It is a self-regulating ecosystem. Things happen because they need to happen in order to keep a balance.

If you do X, you get Y. It is causality. It is Newton’s third law – every action has an opposite and equal reaction. While the reaction may not always be equal, as there are factors as friction, it happens. You always get what you deserve as a consequences of your actions, what you DESERVE, not what you THINK you deserve.

This means that there no moral bias here. No right or wrong. Go black or white. Just action and reaction. And in some way, every element on this Earth acts like that small soap bubble.

What happens seems random. We meet people in a random manner and they change our lives. We fall in love with the most unexpected person and she proves to be the best thing that ever happened to us. We reach circumstances without even realizing how and they are exactly what we need – no matter if these are good or bad.

Life follows a self-regulating pattern. If we are too much on the right, it creates influences to send us to the left. In the end, balance, keeping in the middle is the goal of nature.

The problem is that too often we ignore these signals. We fail to see them and we keep steering too much on the left or on the right until we hit a wall. Emotions, our thoughts, our circumstances even so randomness directs us towards the right destination, as long as we are willing to listen and observe.

And this is so beautiful. It truly is.

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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My KPI Oriented Life – 14th Day Update

Exactly 14 days ago, I’ve decided on a few metrics, I’ve set up some goals and I’ve got to work. And guess what? It worked.

Up until this point, I’ve accomplished four out of 8 goals and I am seeing valuable improvements in the other four too.

Here are ten things that this experiment taught me so far …

Lesson #1 – It is not as easy as it seems. There is a reason why I’ve went for averages in most metrics. A single day lost meant the score going down. It is always for seven days average so eventually, any error will be corrected but this means that I must stay consistent. Very often I’ve found myself working a lot for 2 – 3 days, getting results and then not doing anything for the next three. As an example, in the last seven days, my lowest productivity was five, my second lowest was five (today). There wasn’t a single day where I simply did nothing.

Lesson #2 – It keeps you consistent. I have a system where in order for a goal to become valid, to accomplish it, I must keep that value for at least seven days. This means that it is not enough to wake up once at 07:00, I must have an average for the last seven days. I’m pissed off when I get to a chain of 2 or 3 just to get an inferior value in that day and lose it. I have to start from zero. But this is very similar to life. If you are not careful, you start again.

Lesson #3 – It becomes a part of you. For long periods in my life it was like “do I have something fun to do? No? Then let’s work”. Now it is “do I actually want to ruin my streak or decrease my value? I know that I will have to work a lot harder tomorrow to recover. I’ll just stay in and do my work. If this was the only benefit received from this, then it would have been completely worth it. It is behavioral change.

Lesson #4 – It is stable growth. Circumstances change, moods change, I’m hungry at this moment (and I prefer ordering pizza than wasting time on going outside or preparing food) and this morning I was so tired from lack of sleep that my body hurt but numbers stay the same. And since I’m progressing towards what I want, every day, I am improving the quality of my life dramatically. Of course, I’m missing out on some things but it is worth it.

Lesson #5 – Results don’t care if you are in the mood or not. Even if working in a bad mood usually is not very productive, it eventually leads to results. I’d rather invest four hours and get one hour of value from it then invest nothing at all. However, this refers to not being in the mood. If you are tired or sleep deprived, get to sleep, it is as simple as that. It is one thing to be bored and another maxed out.

Lesson #6 – You can’t really focus on everything at once. I’ve tried it. But it is difficult to progress on everything. If you walk 10.000 steps a day, then you don’t have enough time for work. If you do the work, you don’t have time for studying. So even if this is not formal, every day I’m focusing on a major metric and investing in a secondary manner in the others. Right now is effort invested.

Lesson #7 – Things usually work out themselves. While I can still be hit by a car and all my plans can go to hell, I’ve learned up to this point that if I do X, Y happens. Usually from the most unusual sources. I’ve found a formula to predict the future, at least in some areas of my life, with a rather high accuracy. Now don’t get me wrong. This is more art than science but at least statistically, if you put in X, you get Y. And it is reliable enough to see partially what will happen in three days or a week.

Lesson #8 – There is a maximum number of metrics a person can support. For example, I was better off at 7 instead of 8. The eight one was for savings. However, while I’m not deleting it, I caution you to be careful with tracking and setting goals for too many different things. I could add more things like time meditating or pages in the journal or many other things. I won’t. Even if these are important, too much complexity can ruin the system. Track only what is highly relevant to your goals, the 20% that determines the 80%.

The conclusion here?

If you track your main metrics, you don’t overcomplicate things and you create an system that prevents cheating (for me it is the last seven days average) it can change your life. I can’t say that it is the most productive period of my life but it is surely more productive than usual. If in these circumstances which are not ideal I can get such good results, then when things will be easy, I’ll be achieving a lot more.

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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REVIEW: Thrive: 30 Inspirational Rags-To-Riches Stories by Jason Navallo

Disclaimer: This was an advanced review copy. The final eBook that will be sold may be different compared to this one.

Through over the years, I’ve read a great deal of books. One of my favorite types were autobiographies. I can remember when I was 18 how I was in a car, on a 16 hour trip and I was listening to Richard Branson’s biography. I can also remember how I was living in the first place I could call my own and I was reading “The Snowball Effect” – Warren Buffett’s biography.

Biographies are good because you can learn from what other people did in the past. You can understand their strategies for success and where they’ve failed – so you can at least be prepared in your own life.

No one said that you won’t fail yourself but at least it will be a bit more familiar and you’ll find a solution faster. That’s being said, Thrive is a collection of mini-biographies for some of the most successful people in this world.

It covers A LOT of people, ranging from actors to entrepreneurs to artists. Each biography is about 500 – 700 words long (from my estimation) and it shows how each person went through failure, misfortune and even malice to become what it is or was at the moment of their success.

Each story can be read in a few minutes and I’ve found myself reading story after story, because this book is actually very interesting. While nothing here is new and it is mostly a condensation of other info, it feels like an encyclopedia of success and the first time I’ve opened it, I’ve read over 30 pages in a single sitting.

I suggest this book to you if you need a healthy dose of motivation in your life. It is impossible not to find yourself at least in one of the examples mentioned here. These are different people but they all share a common thread – that is – they’ve struggled before they became successful.

What I’ve liked:
– Contains the life of many people I admire.
– Short and to the point, no such thing as filler content.
– Inspirational and it should be on anyone’s Kindle or coffee table.

What I didn’t liked:
– I would have loved to have some kind of a link if I want to find out more about a certain person, linking to other books or materials.

Score: 9 / 10.

Where can you get it?
– At this moment, I am not aware of it being sold. However, once I get an Amazon link, I’ll post it here.

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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App Review – Happiness for IOS

Journaling sounds like a great idea at first. However, if you really look at it, it has two fundamental flaws:
– You’ll write a few tens of pages in the start then forget it into some drawer.
– You will never read what you’ve wrote ever again, either because it is too painful to do so or because it is not interesting enough.

In other words, journaling is a good vehicle for expressing your feelings, emotions and deepest secrets but not so much for finding correlations and causations.

Then comes Happiness.

I love this little app (with not such a little price tag of 4.99 EUR, which for an mobile app, is a lot).

It’s principles are simple:
– You decide how happy or unhappy you are with five degrees for each side.
– You write a short entry about what makes you feel this way.
– You add tags which will get analyzed and in time, will show you correlations. For example, if you’ve been in a bad state and every time you’ve tagged a certain person as a cause of your unhappiness, then you will see statistically how many times that person made you unhappy. It sounds complicated but it is not. For example, if I check right now exercising, I’ll get a lot of green dots (which means happiness). If I check waking up late, it is always unhappiness.

To put it simply, you’ll quantify how you feel, you’ll write a description to this and you’ll add the key words as tags.

Here’s what I like about the app:
– Works rather fast, very few crashes.
– Nice design.
– Huge help file that reads like a self-improvement book.
– Easy to use even if the tags system is not the most intuitive.
– Can help you export your database into CSV. You’ll get happiness scores along tags along descriptions and this is awesome!

What I don’t like:
– Icloud sync is useless.
– After I’ve reseted my phone and I’ve tried to get my data back with a restore link, it failed to work.
– High price to be honest – I don’t mind paying for it but without a promo or trial, it is a risk to pay 5 EUR.

Do I suggest it? Yes. For self-improvement, for quantification and for being a kick ass journaling app. I wish that a web version would exist as it is not that easy to type long entries on a mobile phone. And an Android version wouldn’t hurt (it is IOS exclusive).

You can get it from here:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/happiness-mood-tracking-journal/id501992445?mt=8

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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How To Live A KPI Oriented Life

There are goals and there are KPIs. If you don’t know what a KPI is, it stands for Key Performance Indicator. In other words, it is a metric that you can track and which represents directly and indirectly performance in a certain area.

For example, how many sales you make is a KPI. If you are closing 10 out of 100 calls a day, then you have a KPI of 10 or 10%.

I’ve decided to go the KPI route some time ago, frustrated that traditional goal setting was not working so well for me. This combined with my love for the quantified self movement, allowed me to create a system based on three different areas:

– Determine the AOI (areas of influence).
– Collect data in a precise manner and in a quantifiable manner.
– Determine goals based on this data.

Sounds too complicated? Let me give you an example.

I know from experience that if I wake up earlier, I’ll get more done, I’ll have a better mood and generally, it will be a better day. I can’t remember a single usual day that went out properly if I woke up at 11:00 or 12:00.

My goal is to have an average wake up time at 07:00. I could do better but for now, since I’ve fallen off the wagon (I had a wake up time of 05:50 for a long, long time), I need to take small steps.

So how do I use this?

First of all, I collect the data.

This is done using a FitBit Charge HR tracker which I wear on my wrist at all times. It is rather accurate and it detects when you go to sleep and when you wake up with 95% accuracy.

This means that every single day, I can sync the FitBit and see when I’ve got out of bed. It determines that I’ve woken up in the moment I perform more movement than I usually do when I sleep. I don’t understand the science behind it exactly but the point is – it is accurate.

I take this data and transform it into a goal. However, since just waking up once at 07:00 it is not really going to help me, I’ve decided to use the “average” method. In other words, all my goals are calculated as an average, usually for the last seven days, so I can have consistency.

Fortunately, FitBit does this automatically for me and calculates it but with some other goals, I have to do it manually (which is not that hard – sum of the last seven days or tracking period divided by seven or the number of days).

I place everything in a spreadsheet and for every day improved, I highlight the new valor with green. For every day that I’m dropping, I’m making it with red. My final goal at this point looks like this …

“SLEEP – WAKE UP HOUR #1 – Reach an average of 07:00 and keep it for at least seven days.”

Here’s how it looks like:

WAKE UP TIME
09:21
09:13
09:10
08:26
08:40
08:53
09:08

Once I reach those seven days and I have an 07:00 average, I will decrease it to 06:30 and so on, until I can reach optimum or high performance values.

What are the advantages of this method?
– You know exactly if you are moving forward or backwards.
– Since it is calculated daily, you must move forward, like a marathon, not a sprint, towards the desired goal.
– It gives you pattern based data over time.
– It is an amazing tool for self-improvement because it is one thing to think you are good at something and another to have the data to prove it.
– Anomalies eventually get canceled because the value is always an average of all values (or for the time period) and not the highest one. This means that if you would track income and you would earn $5000 in a day and nothing in the next 9, then the value on the tenth day would be $500/day and not $5000. This is a good thing since it is very easy to lie yourself with statistics and the more data you put in, the more accurate it becomes.

What are the disadvantages of this method?
– It requires passive tracking or the discipline to do this manually. Some goals like productivity or how much I study (as in books finished) are tracked manually but I admit – I wouldn’t be tracking my sleep without a sensor to absorb and interpret this data for me.
– You can’t lie to yourself. If you are failing, you are failing and the numbers show this to you. So it is not for the faint of heart.

Now every single day is about asking the question – what can I do to improve my stats in these areas? These stats range from fitness to financial to my own happiness (which is not correlated yet, only tracked through an amazing IOS app called Happiness) to how much work I put in.

For now, I’m not doing high level correlations. I’m not trying to see if there are links between values and how changing one changes the other. I may do this at a later date and I only have seven days of info so far in this system.

But what I’m doing is …
– How many steps do I need to walk / run today to hit my 7500/day average?
– How much do I need to exercise today to hit my calories goal average?
– How close am I’m to getting my next badge on FitBit (this acts as a normal goal but since the value resets itself every day, I track it).
– How much work do I need to invest in Pomodoros to reach my average of 10 Pomodoros a day?

And so on. It seems complicated. It is not. It is actually very simple. The problem with SMART goals is that you don’t even know what you need to do and it is easy to fool yourself. A SMART goal would be to earn $5000 in one month.

However, there are two problems with this:
– How do I know I’m on the right path? How do I know I’m progressing?
– What if it takes more than a month – then do I need to update my goal?

Instead, you can have a goal to earn just $161 per day. In some days you’ll earn nothing. In others you’ll earn five times the sum. At the end, it all balances and if you see that you are in the red too much, then it means what you are doing is not working. If you are in the green, then you are raising your average (even if it means from $10 to $15) and you know you are heading towards the right destination.

I find it fascinating and while I would like to take the credit for it, I can’t. These procedures have been used in management for a long time but I’m glad that I’ve found a way to apply them into my own life.

Best regards,
Razvan Rogoz

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