The Personal Life Challenges Template

Continuing the previous article Daily Challenges with Points: Gamify Our lives and Achieve More.

This is the template I created using google spreadsheet with some automatic calculation of total points. You can do something similar. Please leave a comment if you want to use this template, and I can share it.

Daily Challenges with Points: Gamify Our lives and Achieve More

I have been reading a few books in the past several months in the personal growth area, including Mini Habits, The Power of Habits, Atomic Habits, and Design Your Life.

Although I did try to build good habits before and failed, after reading all those books I realized that, one key reason I failed is that I did not take baby steps. I was too strict with myself and asked too much from myself. For example, one effort was to eat extremely healthy and get six-pack abs. I did get them, but the process was extremely painful and the habit didn’t sustain.

I have been procrastinating with some important but not urgent personal projects (career and life). I decide to take all I learned from these books and combine them with my own personality, and design a system. I myself is a  challenge-enthusiastic. Therefore I will base the system on ‘challenges‘, with a difficult level.

Below are the rules:

  • Plan. Each day in the early morning have 1-10 challenges, which I really want to achieve but might have been procrastinating.  These challenges should be very simple and specific.
  • Each challenge has a point representing difficult level (1-100).  For example if you really want but dread workouts, the first challenge could be “wear workout clothes and walk for 1 min“, and difficult level could be 5 points. Number of points should be personal because one task can have different level of difficulties for different person.
  • The way we assign points is flexible and should be creative. For example, one challenge for me could be “run for 10 mins” with 5 points. Another challenge on the same day could be “run for 20 mins” with 20 points, and another one “run for 60 mins” with 100 points.
  • You don’t have to finish the challenges. Actually most of the time you shouldn’t. If you finish them all the time, you probably didn’t list enough challenges each day.
  • Summarize. Before sleep each day, sum the points up and celebrate.
  • Celebrate. Create a longer-term celebration plan. For example, “I would buy that dress I wanted when my total points reach 200”,  “I will go to Hawaii when my total points reach 1000”
  • Keep track of the progress. Have a spreadsheet (e.g. google spreadsheet) or a hardcover Journal. The format is not important.

I will use google spreadsheet and publish it on this website.

I am super pumped, and let’s make it happen!

Getting Things Done by David Allen

This entry is part 1 of 3 in the [Project] Book Summary

The Five Key Ideas

  •  Anxiety and guilt don’t come from having too much to do; it comes from breaking agreements with yourself.
  • If an action will take less than two minutes, it should be done at the moment it is defined.
  • Mastering your workflow involves capturing what has your attention, clarifying what it means, putting it where it belongs, reviewing it frequently and engaging with it.
  • Getting things done requires defining what “done” means and what “doing” looks like.

Continue reading “Getting Things Done by David Allen”

Atomic Habits Summary by James Clear

This entry is part 2 of 3 in the [Project] Book Summary

The Five Big Ideas

  1. Habits are the compound interest of self-improvement.
  2. If you want better results, then forget about setting goals. Focus on your system instead.
  3. The most effective way to change your habits is to focus not on what you want to achieve, but on who you wish to become.
  4. The Four Laws of Behavior Change are a simple set of rules we can use to build better habits. They are (1) make it obvious, (2) make it attractive, (3) make it easy, and (4) make it satisfying.
  5. Environment is the invisible hand that shapes human behavior.

Chapter 1: The Surprising Power of Tiny Habits

“Success is the product of daily habits—not once-in-a-lifetime transformations.”

“You should be far more concerned with your current trajectory than with your current results.”

Continue reading “Atomic Habits Summary by James Clear”

Finished half mathoron

I finished 13 miles in 1 hour 56 mins, which is not too bad for the first-time try. I actually didn’t find it too difficult (thanks to the training of spin class) except that during the workout my thighs sore. I wasn’t at the best physical condition (worked out too much this week), and I expect to do even better next time.

Another thing i achieved today is that I got the “best table topic” award in the toastmaster meeting. This is not imaginable since I thought table topic is the most difficult task, and i simply can’t do it. It comes easily today :). I can, and I believe you can too!

Happy thanksgiving all!

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