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The Discipline Diary

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    • Thread Starter

    I got a dream of greatness that lacks implementation. All my previous attempts at planning, setting goals and trying to build an efficient routine have ended the same - in failure.

    As I get older and older (I'm almost 22) and as I will graduate next year I ask more and more questions about me and my future. There are so many things I want to do, so many dues that need to be repaid to the people I love and so many sacrifices that have been made along the way - they all must tally for something.

    I am not satisfied with the way my life is going and I need to change. I have to stop wishing for more money, more knowledge, more opportunities to improve my circumstances because all I need is myself and the will to change.

    "Start with what you have for what you have is plenty" (credited Eric Thomas?)
    Or any other variation of the above quote is right... I told myself that once I have a lot of money, then I'll travel, I'll study whatever I want to study and I'll do other various things but what if I never acquire 'that' money? What if I, say, win the lottery in 40 years, only to realize I wasted the last 40 years waiting for money when I could have easily done the things I wanted to do? Well, I'm rambling now...

    I'm tired of regrets and excuses and waiting. I can't keep putting things off for a 'better' time because this time is as good as any. Therefore, I set myself a goal to alter the course of my life. All that means is I will start reading more, I will study and I will do the things I haven't previously done - starting this summer.

    I expect it to be a great challenge to find enough discipline, will and time (as I am working full time through the summer) to progress my goals, but it needs to be done...

    I divided my goals into the following categories:
    - Learning Russian - I recovered an old secondary school Russian book and activity book . I will aim to go through through both of them this summer.
    - Blogging - write at least one blog post per week (along with posting here).
    - Physical - going to the gym and training (I have the workout routines).
    - Studying/Dissertation - reading at least one or two articles/chapters for next year's modules as well as doing preparatory reading for my dissertation.
    - Art/Poetry/Sketching/Reading - consistently reading books, poems and sketching as well as reading about paintings, painters and art.
    - Graduate Job - start my search for a graduate role/graduate job now by researching and reading about various positions, opportunities etc.
    - Other - (small/short-term) tasks that don't need a separate category.

    Some of these goals are not extensively detailed, but I did not deem it to be important to provide you with the full details of what they entail. For myself though, I have simplified and specified the details of what I have to do for each category every week.

    I was wary about setting very specific quotas, like time to be spent/number of pages to read etc., because from my experience these limitations only hinder progress and falling short of them only increases the hesitancy/anxiety about not completing the quotas. Also, I am working full time this summer and my time is limited. The goal is to simply make at least some progress in each one of the categories. (I have not yet finalized how I will measure my progress, but in time I think I will develop some sort of system to measure it)

    I will post once a week, on a Sunday evening, to share my progress. I will start posting tomorrow evening about my first (this) week.

    P.S. If you are in the similar circumstances, you may also begin your 'diary' and you can share the weekly progress of your goals in this forum. Maybe we can help each other with our lives by holding each other accountable to our goals.
    • Thread Starter

    Week 1

    Good evening, everyone.
    I hope you had a nice week(end) and I'm guessing most of you are probably not looking forward to tomorrow.

    In general, this week was not that productive and calls for significant improvements. I started out very passively and reluctantly and only picked up on the second part of the week. So, most of the things I have done this week were done from Thursday onward - and the days before that were spent playing games and just simply doing nothing. But, as I mentioned in my initial post, I work full time and sometimes come back tired, annoyed etc. - also, there are always tasks to be done at home...

    - Learning Russian:
    I managed only to cover one lecture from the books which involved reading the material, learning some vocabulary/grammar rules and practicing sentences. I learned a few bits, but I need to improve for next week.

    - Blogging - I did not write an article or have done much research. I always put it off.

    - Physical - May training regime has been half-fulfilled. I struggled to build myself a training routine that resulted in me skipping days but sometimes I felt too tired after work and left it for another day.

    - Studying/Dissertation - I have done no research or reading for this section. However, I don't regard studying as the crucial matter at this point in time as I have only finished the semester 11 days ago. As summer progresses I will look to add more academic articles/reading but for now I will leave it.

    - Art/Poetry/Sketching/Reading - reading is one of the things I love but, usually, struggle to find some time to read. This week I have read about half of the days before bed and I am quite pleased with the progress. I have not read any poems or studied paintings. However, I managed to draw a few (terrible) sketches this week, so I got that going for me.

    - Graduate Job - Just like with studying, this is not a pressing issue for now, but in the coming weeks I will preoccupy myself with it more and more. I did, however, read a few graduate job profiles.

    - Other - I left this section blank for this week.

    Overall, it has not been a good week, but having a plan to follow did help me to get some tasks done. So it was not efficient, but it's a start. For now I only seek to build momentum and slowly work my way up to completing the required tasks for the week. (I really should develop a system of ranking my weeks so that I could see my progress and compare different weeks).

    So, it's a Sunday evening and another week has passed. I wish you all the best in the coming week and I will update you on my progress next Sunday.
    • Thread Starter

    Week 2

    Good evening. One more week has passed and tomorrow is Monday again. However, here is the update on this week. Again, I haven't done as much and, quite frankly, I regret having created this thread... Now when I skip some tasks and take some time off I
    feel especially guilty because I made a public promise and I am no longer accountable solely to myself.
    Before you start thinking that I failed another week I want to mention that I have been feeling quite ill since Wednesday evening
    and my progress was impaired. Perhaps cycling to work in the cold rainy mornings (Yes, I know it's summer, but tell that to this
    climate....) gave me a cold or something, but I spent a couple of evenings (after finishing work) purely sleeping and resting.
    Regardless, each week I try to have fewer and fewer excuses and focus on improvements.

    - Learning Russian: I studied Russian two days this week which is not good enough. Not at all...

    - Blogging - I did write an article for this week, which you can read on my blog (the link is in my signature). Therefore, I am
    pleased with myself as I stopped putting it off and just focused on writing.

    - Physical - as I mentioned earlier in this post, I was feeling ill for a few days this week and my training was kept to a minimum this week to recover my strength and get well. Today I feel much stronger and better. My training will resume tomorrow.

    - Studying/Dissertation - N/A

    - Art/Poetry/Sketching/Reading - I have read about 100 pages of the book ( 'The Book Thief' ) this week. So, my reading is improving. For next week, I need to keep reading but also study a poem or two and read up more on art.

    - Graduate Job - I read about some graduate opportunities, read a couple of articles on finding a graduate job and did a (very quick) preliminary search of graduate jobs.

    - Other - N/A

    Overall, I am not pleased with my week and this thread may put even more pressure (and guilt) on me to study/work on my goals, and sometimes that is not helpful. However, doing things I have wanted to do/feel like I should do actually make me feel good. After looking back on another week I have realized how little I have done and makes me feel obliged to improve for next week. Again, I will do my best to do more next week, but hold off your judgment if I fail.

    So, another Sunday has arrived and Monday will call us back to work again.

    I will 'see' you next Sunday. Enjoy your week.
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