Fortnightly worked well enough as a general mechanism for adjusting my rules and methods for a while, but it doesn’t cut my thought process and actual behavior neatly enough at the joints, and generates far too much garbage text. Often times I will change my rules or methods in the middle of a fortnight, or fail to properly relate important information.
Realitygrill introduced me to something called light spreadsheets. I didn’t find a useful description so I went off of images. Even if I am doing it wrong, I like the direction my initial attempt has gone.
Behaviors: things I do.
Effects: things that happen.
Metrics: anything I use as a meter stick.
Ideally I will determine what set of behaviors gets the most of the results I want, and then keep doing the best behaviors. I can then easily experiment or return to previous states to get particular effects.
The major point here is not to optimize, but to satisfice. Get it back to good, and then move on to the next highest order bit.
I want to focus on one problem at a time, conquer it, and have a clear idea of how I did that.
Things like poor sleep or eating meals far from their meal time have massive negative effects. I can avoid ‘exhaustion’ by satisfying ‘go to bed on time’ without a half dozen paragraphs explaining why.
When recurrent problems appear I can gather a bunch of things to try, and apply them until the problem goes away. One-off problems are harder to fix systematically.
I suspect this will go a long way in correcting the lack of quantitative information for improving things. It will allow me to determine causal relationships between my behaviors and outcomes for mental and physical health, as well as productivity. At least, assuming I bother to experiment that far. I’ll have clear sets of behavioral data with particular results.
Much easier to work with than my fortnightly posts.
Basically, I’ll be using my light spreadsheet as a check engine light for my health. Also, to replace askmeevery.
Instead of once every two weeks, I can run particular experiments disconnected from fortnightly entirely. One massive failing I experience with fortnightly is that either I do not properly do the methods, or I switch them in the middle of the fortnight. If the same problem crops up with an experiment I can merely run the experiment again. I can be a lot more focused and specific with what I am doing if I am trying to distinguish between hypotheses than if I am barely even getting acclimated to one set of behavior or another.
I still need to solve the problem of object level information for tasks and projects. No progress on my system for that as I have not as of yet tried using my Life Strategy Guide system due to all the exhaustion since the last proper fortnightly.
I’ll be trying to use the Life Strategy Guide for rules and methods in the future, so that leaves very little functionality left for fortnightly.
What is left is
- A basic update on what I am doing
- Problems I solved
- One-off effects
- thoughts and theories
Effectively this turns fortnightly into a regular blog post themed with my ideas and results of self-improvement.