This is the first issue of my monthly review. Learn more about it at the end of the post.
About three weeks ago, I began to track three simple habits:
- Early Riser — I want to be up by 7am every day.
- Breaks — Take at least two 15-minute breaks on work days.
- Screen Time — Turn off laptop by 7pm every day.
I tracked all three habits with a simple checkbox system in Notion. I also set up a few other things to help me ease into them:
- Early Riser — use a “sunrise alarm clock” to gently wake up
- Breaks — add reminders in my calendar and follow half of this yoga class during each break
- Screen Time — install Timefibers on my laptop and the StayFree App on my phone to track my screen time automatically
One thing I quickly realized is that I am very bad at tracking these habits manually. The checkbox system was definitely not complicated. But I just couldn’t bring myself to open Notion and check the box when I had completed a habit. For the coming month, I will move to an even simpler technique: a sheet of paper taped on the wall. Let’s see if it will be easier to use.
Even though tracking these habits was not my forte, I still have a few interesting stats and takeaways.
Up by 7am every day
The Early Riser habit was not too hard to keep, and I actually did it almost every day. The tracking is not the most accurate, but I have checked 10/12 boxes.
Strict — one break of 15min every day
Loose — two breaks of 15min every day
The Breaks habit wasn’t so easy. I tended to skip my reminders and to only take one of the two daily breaks most of the time. With a strict tracking of two breaks a day, I only checked 2/12 boxes. If we lower the threshold to one break a day, I checked 7/12 boxes.
Laptop off by 7pm every day
Turning my laptop off by 7pm every day was incredibly hard. Working all day long, I only have a few hours in the evening to actually work on my personal projects. More often than not, I get carried away and turn my laptop off past my curfew time.
My laptop tracking data tells me that over 18 days, I have used it a total of 133 hours—approximately 7h20 every day.
As for my phone, I used it for 17h31 over 25 days—1h46 of that being for a remote Catan game. This approximates to 40 minutes of use per day.
Note: I was on holiday for the past seven days. Pretty sure that it changed my usual screen time: I usually spend more time on my laptop and less on my phone.
Why this monthly review?
As mentioned a few weeks ago, I would like to track some habits in public to keep myself accountable.
I will use this monthly review to report on these habits, but also as a space for bigger questions—that don’t fit in my regular weekly review. For now, I don’t intend to define any kind of structure and will simply let it grow and change organically.
See you next month!