What is your actual routine? And your ideal routine?

nicklebleu

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I seem to cycle between two states - gogogog! and procrastination. I am not sure why I get into one or out of it, it seems to me that I periodically switch between the two. So I kinda know both.

When I am in the gogogo! mode, I need to look after me a lot. I have to consciously put in some downtime to relax. I don’t have a specific routine for that, it’s more to overcome the feeling of being a lazy bum. But recently this has become easier.

When I am in procrastination mode, I use two approaches. I do use lists, but don’t generally write them down, and I need to keep them flexible. For me the “stumbling” approach works best. I have this background list in my head and pick randomly an item and do that for as long as I feel it’s beneficial. I used to set myself time or other goals (I need to finish this, or I’ll do at least three pages of text etc.). I found that this actually presented an obstable: Often I wouldn’t start, because to finish the task seemed too overwhelming. I find it easier to just start, and when I’ve had enough, I stop and do the rest later. Even if I don’t finish the task, a lot more gets done for me that way. It still grates my “sense of symmetry” a bit, but it has become easier. Then I take a rest, read, or whatever, and then I pick the next item off my mental list. And so on. If I can do this, I find that I can get a lot of things done, and often, once I actually start doing, I can even finish it.

The first step they say is the most difficult ...
 

Starshine

Jedi Master
Definitely, the first step is the most difficult. Especially when full of anticipation regarding what has to be done. I also have the natural tendency to get lost in this lalaland. Hence, when drifting towards that mental state, keeping busy is a great mind hack.

I do relate to you luc, genero81, and nicklebleu. I rate typical or average on orderliness in regards to the big five scale. I also feel like I need flexibility and if there is no space for it, it's just too much to handle and doesn't work.
Yet, no monitoring nor obligation at all is way worse to me. I need to coach myself hence the tips of the more orderly are of great help. I observed being obsessive in a cyclical manner too and being more constant is important to me. I oscillate between procrastination and gogogogo. Fortunately, I feel like I have more tools to deal with those imbalances now. It's a fine-tuning process and I think I can pick up all of your pieces of advice and condense it to fit my specific situation. The most important is to find the tools and update them so that they keep working fine.

I have this metaphor developing in my mind since some time, the comparison between being homeless and in prison. What's best? Knowing that while in prison, you have shelter, food and possible training. Homeless you're "free", poor and alone.
You take an average lazy guy with bad health and no sense of responsibility, the pure flesh, the child-man. You put him in prison.
There, you feed him a good diet and explain why. You obligate him to embrace cold therapy and explain why. You obligate him to choose a physical exercise, but he has to pick something. Yes, free-will is limited. Daily meeting and reporting of thoughts in the morning, Samenow style. You get him daily courses on various subjects and let him choose a career path in function of those. Manual and mental work are studied. Daily chores, group activities, lectures, conferences, reading are all part of the prison program.
Take for granted that he is willing to improve. If he doesn't, isolation is awaiting. That's the relationship between the mental plane and physical plane. The mental plane knows what's best, but facing an immature physical plane, it has to coerce it one way or another. Limiting one's free will is actually expanding it, once it you who chooses.
The analogy could be improved, for sure.

I like this idea because it's through some sense of obligation that we can force oneself to do the beneficial things we know. After comes pleasure and true joy.
 
I will use another example of Ra (Law of One) to give another clue.

Ra says that the STS path understands the universe as a place to put "order".

We have a clear example of this in the military sphere. At 07:00 hours "to wake up"; at 07:30 hours the beds made and performed the personal hygiene; at 08:00 hours "breakfast", at 09:00 hours "training to receive orders, at ...

Maybe the STO way is a little more flexible and creative.

It's just a reflection to consider, nothing more Starshine.
 

Starshine

Jedi Master
Let's reflect then. In Cs words, I guess it would translate as:
"Life is religion. Life experiences reflect how one interacts with God. Those who are asleep are those of little faith in terms of their interaction with the creation. Some people think that the world exists for them to overcome or ignore or shut out. For those individuals, the worlds will cease. They will become exactly what they give to life. They will become merely a dream in the "past." People who pay strict attention to objective reality right and left, become the reality of the "Future." "
There is a distinction here. Going out in the world and assuming you know how to put it in order seems effectively related to totalitarian ideologies. It's thinking you know best and imposing your view on what is.

I have other concerns in mind.

I think a self-imposed military routine is better than no routine at all. The only thing I actually like about the military is their training regimen and overall disciplined structure. If you can develop such a discipline in your life in accordance to what you value the most, by defining it yourself, I think you can benefit tremendously from it. When you have no institution other than your own will to improve, it demands some tricks and some feeding of the wolf to keep him manageable, at least.

Peterson also made me reflect on this.

In order to be flexible and creative in any field, one has to know the basics first so that you can overcome any of the problems you might encounter. It's like with everything, once you master something and thus it becomes automatic, you can add flexibility and creativity. Before reaching that point, sticking to the basics and learning the rules is the way to go.

The Cs remind us we can be STO candidate, at best, but in order to go there, having a routine that is oriented towards self-improvement seems like a reasonable thing to do first. At least I can say I benefit from it. If I have lasting benefits and I really find a way to get better, only then, might I think about helping others.
Who can we help if we don't help ourselves first?
 

Jones

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
I seem to cycle between two states - gogogog! and procrastination. I am not sure why I get into one or out of it, it seems to me that I periodically switch between the two. So I kinda know both.

When I am in the gogogo! mode, I need to look after me a lot. I have to consciously put in some downtime to relax. I don’t have a specific routine for that, it’s more to overcome the feeling of being a lazy bum. But recently this has become easier.

When I am in procrastination mode, I use two approaches. I do use lists, but don’t generally write them down, and I need to keep them flexible. For me the “stumbling” approach works best. I have this background list in my head and pick randomly an item and do that for as long as I feel it’s beneficial. I used to set myself time or other goals (I need to finish this, or I’ll do at least three pages of text etc.). I found that this actually presented an obstable: Often I wouldn’t start, because to finish the task seemed too overwhelming. I find it easier to just start, and when I’ve had enough, I stop and do the rest later. Even if I don’t finish the task, a lot more gets done for me that way. It still grates my “sense of symmetry” a bit, but it has become easier. Then I take a rest, read, or whatever, and then I pick the next item off my mental list. And so on. If I can do this, I find that I can get a lot of things done, and often, once I actually start doing, I can even finish it.

The first step they say is the most difficult ...
I sometimes use what I refer to as a 'reverse list' when I feel overwhelmed. Lists at that time don't seem to help at all and can add to the overwhelm. So I start with a blank piece of paper and do just one simple thing, then write that down on the paper. It doesn't matter what the first thing is, just so long as I can start somewhere to build my list. After I've gotten a few things down on the list I feel less overwhelmed and I can start planning what will come next - but I wait until it's done before I write it on the list. This reverse list is encouragement and the more I write down on it the better I feel. It's a good way of working out of overwhelm where I can often feel incapable of doing anything, and it ends up being quite a calming process.
 

mrtn

Jedi Master
In order to be flexible and creative in any field, one has to know the basics first so that you can overcome any of the problems you might encounter. It's like with everything, once you master something and thus it becomes automatic, you can add flexibility and creativity. Before reaching that point, sticking to the basics and learning the rules is the way to go.
Someone once said it to me this way:
A master doesn't need rules, but it takes rules to make a master.
 

maiko

Jedi
FOTCM Member
When reading about the different techniques and the positive effects routines have on us I always have to think of my father. He used to work a psychotherapist and as a child, I was super chaotic, like insanely messy and unreliable. Even at a young age, I felt ashamed about it but it was impossible for me to change my messy ways. It got better over the years, still, much of it was an outer appearance and not a real structure or routine. The real boost came when I started following the material on this forum and was forced to either abandon it or starting to get my things together. Point is, my father always said that my outer chaos is a mirror of my inner chaos/lack of structure. AND HE WAS RIGHT.

When I started getting more organized in my life and in dealing with the world around me as well as my personal issues it also enabled me to develop focus and to start organizing my time towards productive things.

With the exception of the garden shed, I would say I have a good grip on the dark holes of chaos in my life. And it helps me a lot to focus when I know things are in order and I have a productive routine going on. It doesn’t mean less fun for me, it actually means much more joy and the opportunity to deal with the things that tend to burden me.

It is also a helpful alarm system if keeping up my routine overwhelms me I know that something is amiss and that I need to look into it lest it becomes a giant pink elephant.
It always helps “to do things the right way” if you use too many short cuts to make your day easier those things will be coming back knocking on your door. Like the picture I was too lazy to find a solution to fix the frame, next thing I know is that I had to buy a new frame and clean the stairs of glass.

I find it amazing to read about everyone’s routines. It is one of these aspects of life that show that the differences in our personalities really have an impact on what works for us and what doesn’t. Comparison with the impressive routines of others can be counterproductive but it needs at least the willingness to really try and change something. Settling into a productive routine will always have to be an ongoing process as life changes. But the effort we put into it can help us to be more stable in our daily life. Just my 2 cents.
 

3DStudent

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I've been meaning to post something similar for the past 3 or 4 weeks. And I delay because I have trouble with my routine adding in things. So thanks for posting, and I'll try to keep it less ranty, although it's a problem for me. Your routine sounds nice, but I need to break mine or be more flexible because when I delay things it causes a lot of stress.

Here is my Eisenhower Matrix that I downloaded some time ago. I think it may help to first categorize things in your mind as you encounter them daily. You can picture them as the colors even.

29389

I've thought about using a planner like a Bullet Journal or Strikethrough system before. But I ended up just using a Field Notes journal and just listing things I needed to do an crossing them out. There is a technique in Bullet Journaling where you migrate something you didn't do one day to the next and you add a number to it, so if you have something like taskXYZ (5), then you've been avoiding it and should get it done.

They say that a physical journal is best. And I think you get more satisfaction or dopamine when checking things off. I think I'm both a "gogogo" person and a procrastinator, but mostly a procrastinator. @luc, the Time Timer is interesting, and looks similar to the Pomodoro technique. I think there is something to the just do something, if only a little, approach. It sounds like when the C's say create a vacuum for things to get going.

I sometimes use what I refer to as a 'reverse list' when I feel overwhelmed. Lists at that time don't seem to help at all and can add to the overwhelm. So I start with a blank piece of paper and do just one simple thing, then write that down on the paper. It doesn't matter what the first thing is, just so long as I can start somewhere to build my list. After I've gotten a few things down on the list I feel less overwhelmed and I can start planning what will come next - but I wait until it's done before I write it on the list. This reverse list is encouragement and the more I write down on it the better I feel. It's a good way of working out of overwhelm where I can often feel incapable of doing anything, and it ends up being quite a calming process.
That is called a 'to done' list. There are to do lists for tasks not completed and to done lists where you write what you've already done. Then there are 'to don't' lists. You put your vices in there. :evil:

I love looking at people's handwriting, be it in a Christmas card or documents at work. You can verify from someone that knows the person some general features of their personality. I think routines show the same for people.

There was a post last year in the Swamp and my reply pretty much is the same thing I struggle with. Being maxed out on activities and finding time for things: this thread here

I used to have a problem with too many forum tabs. I had 100-200 at one time. I think I only have maybe 20 or 25 that I would like to read. But there never is a 'rainy day' so I probably will not read them and just keep up with newer threads. I had a thread about 'tabitis' here: Keeping up with the forum / "tabitis"

Just a few more thoughts that have come up. 'If you don't do it, it won't get done'. Sounds obvious, but you need to do the necessary first, not until there's little time and then you toss it out. I think I'm a bit addicted to the forum. But it's the most interesting information, so why wouldn't I like to check it every day? And the things here when applied will help you. I have 'FOMO' or Fear of Missing Out. That's why I get anxious if I get behind. I guess it's a problem with priorities, and I need to keep in mind every day life. It's a part of my rigid, black and white thinking.

I always have a hard time on Sunday evening (!). It's a battle and I need to bring my sword and be ready to fight. But the battle is always there, as we know. We lose an hour today because of Daylight Savings Time. It sometimes feels like I'm stuck on a hampster wheel. It's hard to deviate, but the stress is real. But I want to be a human being, not a human doing.

I've heard of a system called 1 3 5. You write the biggest task of the day, then three moderate tasks, and 5 small tasks. I haven't tried it, but it seems like too many tasks. I've heard that you should have one master list, and it should be on paper. Same idea as paper books are better to read than e-Books. I make too many lists on little pieces of paper. But they can be consolidated to one location. I think I'll start my little Field Notes journal for a to do list again.

I've thought it would be a good idea to keep a small journal the size of your palm on yourself. Because I always have ideas and then I forget them unless I repeat them. They could be migrated into my actual journal later. But I'm pretty good at remembering things if I repeat them in my head. I usually don't work with calendars and I can remember grocery lists pretty well in my head.

Another thing is I get stressed out when unable to complete my routine. I don't say oh well I'll just not do that. I force it in and lose sleep. It's like, I don't really believe that the world will end if I don't catch up with the forum or post to social media. But I act as if it matters that I do.

Well, that's it. Not perfect, but like I said I needed to post something like this for a while. Thanks for the thread.
 

Starshine

Jedi Master
Thank you for pointing out those other threads, 3DStudent! I think those could be merged weren't them in the swamp, they are great additions to this subject.
I found Pashalis post especially useful for both of us, as I can relate to your struggles quite easily and again JP nails it as I happen to be both very high in openness and moderately high in neuroticism (especially very high in withdrawal, 91%), as well as being moderately low in conscientiousness on the Big Five Aspects scale.

So it seems obvious now that I need to improve my conscientiousness to reduce my neuroticism, and I think focusing on that on a very practical level is the most important thing to do. We watched Mary Kondo's Netflix show and it's obvious how optimizing your environment is something that has to be addressed to have more mental space. I like how she radiates purity and gratitude, also I really appreciate this japanese view on things being lively.
Clothes, houses, and material being appreciated for being, for serving and for being related to real memories. Developing this approach develops gratitude and respect far from a materialistic and nihilistic view of the world. Inspiring and doable.

I try to keep it cool even though my routine is slightly modified or even totally changed by life circumstances. Stay in the present and concentrate on persistence, don't lose energy feeding the wrong wolf flagellating yourself or becoming obsessed.
 

Starshine

Jedi Master
Chu, I just wanted to thank you very very much for pointing out Stephen Covey's book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (it's available in French too). It is a terrific book that encompasses so much more and it is so right on time for me. It feels like an answer to my prayers. Something tilted inside, as we say, sometimes you just need to hear it the right way even though you heard it numerous times. A lot of personal work is implied throughout the book so I'm focusing mainly on that for now and I can see where the Art of Manliness website took inspiration, or so I guess. It's a handbook for developing one's character apparently based on Franklin's system of values. It's awesome!
👍👍👍
 

luc

Ambassador
Ambassador
FOTCM Member
Just a note for those of us who are a little short on "gogogo" energy: we found that drinking Hypertonic Quinton water seems to really boost energy levels and willpower. We have been drinking one vial every day, but now will try it in bottled form from a different brand that's cheaper. Maybe you can give it a shot and see if this works for you!
 

Aiming

The Living Force
Just a note for those of us who are a little short on "gogogo" energy: we found that drinking Hypertonic Quinton water seems to really boost energy levels and willpower. We have been drinking one vial every day, but now will try it in bottled form from a different brand that's cheaper. Maybe you can give it a shot and see if this works for you!
Thanks for the heads-up, Luc. What brand are you using?
 

Chu

Administrator
Administrator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
You're very welcome Starshine! I'm glad to hear that it is helping you. Your post on the session thread was very good, I think, and it was a good way of connecting concepts together based on this reading.

About the pomodoro technique, I have to say that it has been quite useful for me too. I use the timer on my computer, and unless there is a distraction I really need to stop for, it helps keep me focused. :thup: And it doesn't have to be just 25 minutes at a time (I've found that's sometimes a bit too short, whether it's for studying or for working). You can find the length of time that is more ideal to you.

Speaking of this, I'm reminded of a course offered by Barbara Oakley: Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects | Coursera (In French: https://fr.coursera.org/learn/learning-how-to-learn ) It's free, and the videos have transcripts for those who wish to go faster and just read. Since I did it a couple of years ago, I incorporated some of her advice into my learning routine, reading time, or work, and it's been very helpful. You still need discipline and will power and what have you, but while some of her tips are too basic, others are were very good, IMHO. I think that at least parts of it can be useful not just for better organizing work/study and learning better, but also for those who struggle with procrastination. At least from my experience, it was really good to learn how to challenge myself in different ways, retain better when reading difficult books, studying a language, learning to enjoy the process more, etc.
 

Luks

Dagobah Resident
FOTCM Member
You're very welcome Starshine! I'm glad to hear that it is helping you. Your post on the session thread was very good, I think, and it was a good way of connecting concepts together based on this reading.

About the pomodoro technique, I have to say that it has been quite useful for me too. I use the timer on my computer, and unless there is a distraction I really need to stop for, it helps keep me focused. :thup: And it doesn't have to be just 25 minutes at a time (I've found that's sometimes a bit too short, whether it's for studying or for working). You can find the length of time that is more ideal to you.

Speaking of this, I'm reminded of a course offered by Barbara Oakley: Learning How to Learn: Powerful mental tools to help you master tough subjects | Coursera (In French: Apprendre à apprendre : des outils mentaux puissants qui vous aideront à maitriser les matières difficiles | Coursera ) It's free, and the videos have transcripts for those who wish to go faster and just read. Since I did it a couple of years ago, I incorporated some of her advice into my learning routine, reading time, or work, and it's been very helpful. You still need discipline and will power and what have you, but while some of her tips are too basic, others are were very good, IMHO. I think that at least parts of it can be useful not just for better organizing work/study and learning better, but also for those who struggle with procrastination. At least from my experience, it was really good to learn how to challenge myself in different ways, retain better when reading difficult books, studying a language, learning to enjoy the process more, etc.
It could be Pomodoro or something other. The most important I think is to have something that provokes/challenging us to keep us focusing. I believe that all the time limits work! All the knowledge about different techniques and working about our mind are beneficial; however, what works the best is to work to be consistent with the self. Do not have an inner fight in the person. Do what one "believes" at the deeper level.
 

Starshine

Jedi Master
Thank you Chu for your much-appreciated feedback ;) I'll take the course with enthusiasm and install a Pomodoro/Tomato software to try it out directly.
I agree, Luks, it really puts the idea of 'challenges are fun' on a practical day to day level. Along with a defined direction reviewed and updated on a weekly basis to remain coherent, equilibrate, harmonious, adaptable, and flexible, consistency can be attained!

I've been drinking Quinton daily for a few months now and I feel it is of great support. I dilute it most of the time but can also have it hyper if not before bed. FWIW, I use Sea-Aquacell's brand CSBS, it has been mentioned in Quinton thread, they propose offers regularly.
 
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