Yesterday I tried out the notion of first and second sleep, and I was curious whether I could follow up with it for a second day. Nope! I think I awoke sometime around 4AM, but slept through it. I woke up around 9AM. I’d gone to sleep around 11PM instead of 8PM, which probably made a difference.
I think it is my lack of a regular sleeping schedule that makes experiments like this hard to draw conclusions from, so I would have to really commit to a two-week trial. However, I suspect that in my case sleeping pattern isn’t as critical. Maintaining an unyielding discipline with regards to my habits matters more if I want to have a reliable sleep pattern, and the same can be applied to other “good for me” habits like going to the gym. The problem: I don’t think I really like having unchanging habits. I like change! If I can find a way to be maximally productive given the randomness of my wakefulness, that would be great.
I’ve had several requests for a full year word-tracking calendar based on the National Novel Writing Month Tracking Calendar I made last November.
I started the basic layout yesterday with three months in, but realized that I wasn’t quite sure if it should track 50,000 words for every month. Do people really want to track 50,000 words a month for the entire year? Or maybe it’s just that people want to have their 50K word goal during whatever month makes sense?
There are probably several variations that I will end up making, so this is a good time to get your two cents in! :-)
SUMMARY: Experimenting today with the idea of a short “first sleep” followed by a period of writing and then “second sleep”. I write about what has been bothering me creatively and productively recently, and come to the conclusion that to be true to myself I must serve the benevolent unicorn overlords that give my life some sparkle.
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I spent a good part of this weekend updating the downloadable “ETP Almanac”, a version of the popular Emergent Task Planner for planning your day. This is a US$9 digital download that has:
- 365 dated pages in PDF format for 2014
- Interactive text fields for pre-filling main tasks (Adobe Acrobat Reader required).
- Groundhog Day Resolution Days and major holidays (US Letter version only)
- Color and Black and White versions for different printer types
- Full-page and Half-Page versions for both US and International paper sizes
- Instructions on how to use the files
To use, pick the color and format you want to a local print shop to have bound, or print them out yourself. I originally designed this as a file you could take to your local print shop to have printed and bound, though of course you could print this yourself. With this use in mind, I’ve made sure there is space on the left-side of the page to allow for binding or hole punching.
The curious can download sample files which includes both full-page and half-page designs for the first 21 days of 2014.
Incidentally, this year’s update uses the latest version of the Emergent Task Planner for the full-sized pages, while the half-size remains the same (similar to the ETP Mini Notebook design). Everyone who purchased the 2013 ETP Almanac after July 1st, 2013 through GumRoad should also have received a free 2014 update on December 8 or 9; if you didn’t receive one, let me know and I’ll make it right. Thanks for your continued support!
The 2014 Compact Calendar is now available. I thought I had updated earlier, but apparently that was only in my dreams.
For those of you new to the Compact Calendar, it’s a single-page calendar that you print out and use for planning. The days of the year are presented as a solid block of days, so it’s easy to count-off weeks when you are figuring out scheduling. There’s plenty of space on the right-hand side too, so you can keep notes. I first made this calendar back in the 90s so I could block-out projects during meetings, but since then I’ve heard that people use it for family vacation planning and even biological purposes (counting weeks of gestation, for example). There are even a few international versions available from generous bloggers around the world. Thank you for your time!
» Go to the Compact Calendar Page to download!
While I am not a military veteran, I find this article about being part of a social network where people cared about and supported your performance resonates with how I’ve been feeling about work. Back in the 90s, I was more obsessed about team and mission, but eventually this drive was replaced with a stubborn independent streak as I came to believe it was easier to work alone. It had not occurred to me that the military, with its team-oriented performance-based approach, actually might be a model to follow, embodying:
- Objective-based Goals
- Measured Performance
I personally have never liked people telling me what to do, but I think this has been because I didn’t have an overarching sense of mission to go with it, or the people telling me what to do lacked it themselves. It’s interesting to think about, and this article reminds me to look at military people in a new light.
See What Vets Miss Most Is What Most Civilians Fear: A Regimented, Cohesive Network That Always Checks On You
Angelia Trinidad’s “Passion Planner” Kickstarter
My internet buddy Angelia Trinidad is Kickstarting a notebook/planner she called the Passion Planner. It’s “an all-in-one weekly appointment calendar, journal, goal setting guide, and to-do list log integrated in one handmade leather planner”, and I just backed it because Angelia is pursuing her dream with conviction and meticulous follow-through.
Currently, I’m slammed with work, and I must admit I’m living vicariously through Angelia’s project. Go, Angelia, go!