Daily Diary and Routine

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I'm 100% sure the key to productivity and success is tracking what you do. I got my first major fitness results when I started keeping a workout journal, keeping track of weight, reps etc.

I've tried evernote, omnifocus, trello, habit apps but I'm still looking for a better way to track everything, I'm not there yet

Is anyone here best at this? I bet some of the top earners keep track of actions one way or the other

Thank you
 

eliquid

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You gotta find what works for you, meaning just and only you.

People think that other people have the answer, or what people are pushing works for them.

The reality is, most people don't know shit and just regurgitate what someone else regurgitated.

I went through tons of systems and methods. I did them 2-4x each to make sure I just didn't mess them up or do it wrong. All I did was waste my time the whole time.

What ended up working for me was tracking shit with pen and paper in no particular order. These days I tend to use OneNote more because I can use it across multiple computers, but there is no order or system to it. If you saw my OneNote folders you would be like WTF. If you saw the mountains of notebooks, back of envelope, and napkin notes I have, you would also be like WTF.

But it all makes sense to me.

I get things done 1000x faster and tracked better that way.

This was Einsteins desk hours after he died. You think you gonna out produce him? lol



Point is, find out what works for you and how you work.

Don't worry about tips from others. Trust me on this.
 

Ryuzaki

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I've tried everything.

At the end of the day, for to-do stuff, I use Trello for the big picture and will pull cards out of different boards into a single "Today" board. I tend to not even do that and just use a text file to keep track of what's going on in the immediate. I keep that open 24/7, drop notes in it, delete stuff, but at the top is the to-do list for the day/days ordered by priority.

For the gym, nothing beats a folded up piece of paper and a pen. I design spreadsheets for that, fill it out over two weeks, then hole punch it and put it in the folder. Then I print out the next sheet for the next two weeks. I don't do graphs or anything after the fact, though you could for sure since you have the data. You'd just have to do the data entry.

In college I lived off the same method. Folded up piece of paper with assignments & due dates.

Nearly every system will have a flaw. Some are based on calendars, but I don't work that way. Some are based on time-blocking, but I don't work that way either. Some are based on to-do lists, which can work to a degree for me.

But the text file and treating it like a piece of scratch paper is perfection. I can write whatever I want, keep it in rich text file format and use bolding, font-sizes, and colors, and free form whatever I need.

For each of my projects, though, I do have a Master spreadsheet that contains everything from lists, charts, tables, graphs, logins, from the lowest level of detail to the highest. I keep these populated so I can always see the big picture and when I go to sell the project I have all of that gathered already.
 
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I've always kept all my random notes on Evernote.

For everything else I tried to use Trello in the past.
Never worked for me.

I then heard about workflowy from Cal Newport and it worked really well for a while.
It's very easy to use and very fast once you master its shortcuts.

But a couple of weeks ago I discovered Notion and I'm never going back to Trello/Asana/Monday/...
It's amazing, super easy to use, very visual and customizable with endless tags/properties/filters.
And very cheap too.
 

BCN

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I keep all my notes in Evernote, and use Notion.so for more project management stuff. In Notion I work with Kanban, goal is to move as much shit to the right as possible. Easy enough.

I don't have a proper routine. I sleep long enough that I'm not tired, and some days I don't start working until 1-2 PM, other days I'm up at 6 and start work. Other days I do all-nighters and get a lot done.

I don't think routines work for people like us. Creative, slightly insane people. It's limiting, and you can spend a lot of time optimizing, without seeing returns.

My 'secret' tip though is to log a "done list" (not a to-do).

Super simple, not rocket surgery:

Task | Date | Description | Minutes spent | Project (different JVs, my own company, client)

[Mod Note: Don't link to images, embed them, please]

I only log hours where I fully work, meaning that there's no distractions, no getting coffee, no surfing or anything. I use a kitchen timer. I aim for at least 4 hours per day (which is actually a lot - you'd be surprised at how little most people actually work).

I log detailed. I.e. adding a search form to client site, 10 minutes. Ads reporting for JV A: 15 minutes. Setting up landing page + tracking: 25 min. Making an ad video: 10 minutes. Research new ad angles: 90 minutes.

Over time you also get a better feeling for how long things actually take. I.e. I used to use "2-3 days" on my accounting, or it felt like that, when I log hours it's really just 3-4 hours each quarter.

You can also identify time sinks that can be automated. I spent a lot of time cost reporting for FB ads, in different currencies; time zones and clients ... so I automated a big chunk of it. I automatically convert all to USD, normalize time zone, and push them via API to their respective systems.

I don't log lighter work where I'm talking on skype and reading, doing some work here and there type stuff.

I think it works, because there's no worse feeling than workinga full day - and literally have done 2 hours of work. Then you realize you could just do the 2 hours, have the same output, and go to the beach and drink wine with the wife or go to the gym.
 
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There's one thing that always bothered me about digital stuff. Out of sight and out of mind. I'm quite familiar with Trello and use it on a few projects.

For me the good old fashioned pen and paper works best. I don't remember where I've learned this: daily contracts. I write down the 1-3 tasks I want to finish for that day date it sign it. It's my word. This pushes me over the edge to finish those tasks.

Why so few? Because these are the most important ones for the day. And I always put those objectives that is under my control and it's not dependent on anyone.

Late fall I've came across this idea. In January I was cleaning out my desk and I have thrown away over 60+ contracts. This boosted my productivity.

Plus it's next to my laptop. I can't miss it. I hate to break my word so that motivates me to finish them.

As for keeping them and tracking it's not that good of an approach.
 

eliquid

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Having a "do not do list" is also very handy and productive.

I know it's a bit different than what we are discussing, but I find "procrastination" creeps in unless you have a do not do list.

For example, nothing against the forum, but I am procrastinating on something right this minute by being on the forum and typing this. I need to put "forum checking" on my do not do list before 7pm. Or "do not do" until the weekend.

Same with email. Do no do until noon or do not do if my 3 rocks are not completed.
 

bernard

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Asana has been really good to me. Just being able to organise and plan into a calender, get done what's planned for the day. That's what gets everything progressing. I would have like to have some sort of integration with brainstorming/mindmapping tools and it would also be nice if you could integrate stuff like data studio as well. Or be able to customise a project more. That would turn Asana into a full command central.
 
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For example, nothing against the forum, but I am procrastinating on something right this minute by being on the forum and typing this. I need to put "forum checking" on my do not do list before 7pm. Or "do not do" until the weekend.
I'm using the app Freedom to block out BUSO, Reddit, News & a bunch of other stuff until 17:00. It works on Android / Windows. There's a similar app called Focus for mac.
 
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Since we've already strayed from the topic here, check out www.inmotion.app for more "distraction awareness". It's a free Chrome plugin I found the other day - and so far I like it best of all the site blockers.

Here's how it works:

It doesn't actually block the site, it just reminds you that the site you're on is flagged as a potential time sink. If you still decide to use the site, you have to set a timer. The timer stays on the screen, you can move it around the screen. When the timer runs out, you get another prompt with two options: (1) close tab, (2) extend the timer.

I love their design - it's beautiful, intuitive to use, and doesn't interfere with the usage of the "potentially distracting" sites at all.

The Freedom/Focus apps I mentioned above are best for websites that you absolutely never want to use. Like news, sports, or adult websites that you know add 0% of value to your life. It doesn't work that well with Reddit, BUSO, or YouTube, since we do actually need to use these sites for learning & reference.