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23 July 17

Days to go: 267

Still felt like I haven't achieved anything so far this weekend, with the exception of my long run. I do one long run each week and shorter runs during the week over lunchtime to maintain my flow. This weekend I was aiming to do 20km (12.5 miles) but I fell short by 1km as I found the wall... hard. I now need to research into either supplements or things I should be taking on the longer runs, my first thoughts go to gels or bananas. I have a week to sort it out before I try again next weekend and now I am more determined as ever to break the 20km mark.

Beyond that, yesterday was a bit of a nothing day. More endless hours sitting around waiting for people, my run, and spending several hours trying to get my headphones back that I left in an Uber on Friday. I have started experimenting with an app called Braintoss, where you make short notes and it emails them to you so you don't have to keep thinking about them or trying to remember, aka the "mindsweep" theory. I actually used it a lot while running, I get into the flow when I run so I started having lots of ideas, and it was super easy to get the app to send them to myself for later. Today I am aiming to attack that list or bunch of ideas and clear as many as I can. Or at least make a notebook page for today, which would be the first one for a weekend.

Tomorrow, the study semester starts again so will be time to hit the books in my spare time! I am a bit nervous about this subject as I think it is going to make me paranoid and start wearing a tinfoil hat.

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24 July 17

Days to go: 266

I haven't gone through the notes I sent myself yet @Mettermrck, but it looks like it tried to translate my sound clips with hilarious results. I need to work out how to fix that, to either just send the clip or revert to just typing it out. While it is hilarious to get those, it's not constructive at all.

Still didn't really achieve anything on the weekend, and again feel like it was wasted, which frustrates me. I went for my long run on Saturday, but Sunday I achieved very little. I was still very tired from my run on Saturday so I didn't go again so definitely need to look into how to overcome that, which I think is going to be supplements. I tried setting up my own Nextcloud instance, which worked thanks to berryboot, but I don't think it is what I am after. It's more of a Dropbox-style clone that you have full control over, where I would like access to all of my files, which there are terabytes of. I think I am going to have to go back to Resilio and try to work out why it was freezing all the time.

Did not get around to soldering either - which probably means I wont be soldering again for months, unless I need it as a break from studying, because hey hey, today is the first day back of the semester. So much to do for it, paperwork to fill out, textbooks to buy and readings to read. I am looking forward to this semester, it's going to be the first one without the cloud of gaming distracting me so will let me work really hard on my grades, and its going to give me something to work towards on weekends instead of feeling like they are a waste of time.

But, as they say, today is a new day. I have so much I want to achieve today that I am for the first time in a long time not dreading a Monday. I am quite nervous  about talking to Jaydub at lunch time, but I have a feeling it is going to be a blast. First things first, lets map a network drive so I can access all my documents again.

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25 July 17

Days to go: 265

I assume it's the same reason I was getting frustrated and angry at work @Cam, that I didn't have clear goals or intent for what I was doing or aiming for so it felt like I was going around and around in circles. I now feel like that (or similar to) on the weekends - that while I am probably doing a lot of things, that I am going around and around in circles. I thought my notebook with the personal targets would solve that but I am not in a habit of using them on the weekends yet, even though I have attempted a few times.

So if there is 265 days to go, that means today is day 100. That's absolutely crazy that I am into 3 digits. I did have a lot of urges again last night though so who knows when I will ever be out of the woods. I was a bit down last night because it seems so hard to try and catch up with mates these days, work and family commitments just mean that I'm forever being turned down for get togethers which makes me feel rejected. That got me thinking about games, because this wouldn't be a problem if I was playing online and being social, I thought. That would not solve my problem though of being able to get out of the house and catch up with mates to forget about the week for a little while - it would still have me in the house and I would still feel lonely, as the "social" aspect of the games I used to play usually involved just finding a certain role for a dungeon or boss, spending time with them for a few minutes, then moving on. Even the friends I played online with seemed to be busy all the time towards the end which made me give them up in the first place because it felt like I was playing by myself.

Anyway, so moral of the story was I was a bit down last night about not being social lately. The fact that I am so tired and still haven't recovered from the weekend run probably is a contributing factor. I went for another run yesterday to try and stretch my legs out and keep moving which was good, it was slow but I don't care, I just wanted to get out there and hit the road. Going to go pick up some gels when I go see the doctor this afternoon and start giving them a try. They are absolutely loaded with calories so won't help with any weight loss I might have been experiencing, but will keep my training consistent.

Haven't looked at my studies yet, yesterday was a little hectic and I priortised a few things over getting into my study, the main one being trying to get my computer set up just right so I can be super productive on Thursday afternoon when work has given me 3 hours to work on it. The good news is I got my drives working again so I can access my documents, but I haven't shared them across the network. It might sound like it's a bit complicated or I am wasting time, but I found last semester when I was switching between my laptop and my RPi I was always losing time transporting the documents across or I kept using an out of date version of my work. This should solve this so it is an investment in my productivity.

Here is to today being an improvement from yesterday!

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With a schedule that is tough to navigate, it's important to be a bit creative to find solutions to the challenges you're facing. For instance, I travel all the time, so I'm rarely in the same city as my friends (especially when I traveled nomadically for three years), so instead I was intentional in setting up quick phone calls, Skype calls, texting, staying in touch via Facebook, etc. Be careful about limiting yourself to only hanging out or catching up in person. It's more about quality time than physical time.

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26 July 17

Days to go: 264

That's a good point about not limiting myself to catching up in person @Cam. Once of my goals recently was to call or skype my friends and family a lot more, but I only did that for a few days. Time to up the ante and put it into action.

Looked into my studies last night and wow, so much work to do. I am certain the content is going to make me so paranoid about being on the internet and what I do, hopefully not to the point that I bury all my computers and start wearing a tin hat though! I tried to frontload my commitments this time rather than leaving my chosen topics right to the end of the semester and then stressing out. Time to get me a good grade.

There is going to be a lot going on again today, it is going to be very busy and I will need  to stay focused and productive to make a dent to my to do list. My drives are mapped across the network successfully so there won't be an issue of having more than one version of my notes going at once. The next step is to set up a resilio sync so I still have access to them when I'm not on the network but I don't need that in the short term so it is not a priority.

I wonder what @Moe is up to, I haven't heard from him for a long time! I hope you're doing well mate.

A bit tired this morning so the thoughts/ideas aren't rushing to me as quickly as they usually do, either that or my mind is nice and clear for a new day! 

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27 July 17

Days to go: 263

Today is my first half-day at work so I can focus on my studies in the afternoon. I am super greatful that I have the flexibility to be able to ask for this time, and appreciative that they agreed and released me for it. I initially was worried/concerned that it wouldn't sink in though and I would either find myself being asked to stay at work or start getting calls/messages wondering where I was; but the biggest hurdle seems to be myself! I stupidly made an appointment this afternoon in the study window and agreed to a meeting next Thursday afternoon as well. I am hoping these are the only two slip ups. Even though this afternoon's meeting is only an hour and is with my leadership coach so it will be constructive, the fact is I need to travel to go see him and travel back, which will diminish what time I have. Oh well, I will learn from these mistakes and get better, my study time is now in the calendar both at work and at home so they shouldn't program anything in that window and it should remind me to keep the day clear.

Yesterday was very productive, managed to get a lot of paperwork completed. Not as much as I wanted as I still feel like I am behind the eight ball (and I wanted to go over some leadership notes before today), but at least I feel lately that I have a purpose at work and that I am getting somewhere with all my efforts, which is a stark contrast compared to the start of the year. Now I just need my personal life to fall into line, and I am hoping my study habit will help kick that along. I never thought I would be happy with my professional life but unhappy with my personal life! It's all topsy turvy land over here.

Yesterday I started thinking about WoW again. I was driving to go see my family in hospital and the thoughts of playing it came rushing back. I think it was because I was trying to think of activities I could suggest to friends online to do in order to still be social but without the barrier of needing to catch up in person. Oh man, I got such a huge dopamine rush just for thinking about it, which felt good straight away so I let myself dwell on it a little bit, then then I started to get frustrated. I thought I was through this, when I have trailed off thinking about other games at other moments I did not get the rush like I did with WoW, so I thought I was on the other side of gaming and it was in my rear view mirror. Obviously this is not the case. WoW is clearly my archilles heel. I accepted that I was thinking about it but started forcing myself to think about why it was bad for me and I couldn't go back to it, and I came to the following realisation of how I started playing in the first place.

Games are a lot of fun, I get that, and when you play them with friends it takes it to a whole new level because it adds social interaction. However, it is not always easy to get timetables to line up to play it together, as I have experienced this week by trying to spend time with friends. So, we resort to going online where there are thousands of people in our position wanting to play with the element of social interaction. But that's the kicker - the social interaction isn't real. While we can group up with these people and start some games, the social discussion isn't there. You're not joking and laughing with your mates, there is no healthy banter. Instead the social "interaction" is about the game itself, and only about the game itself. So the table is flipped, rather than playing a game to be social, you're now being social to play a game. The social element becomes smaller and smaller and you'll soon find yourself barely talking to other people at all, instead seeing them as single use AI substitutes.

When I thought of it like that, I suddenly became disinterested about WoW.

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28 July 17

Days to go: 262

So the Episode 14 podcast is up! This is a super-special episode because it features a very attractive, charismatic, handsome, smart, striking, likeable young man.... oh and me xD I was a bit nervous about how I would go having never done a podcast or anything like that before but it was a lot of fun!  Jason was really easy to talk to, he's obviously got the knack for doing these things and helped me along. I wasn't sure if I wanted to listen to it or not, but just like when I hit day 90 I turned out to be excited and listened straight away. It turned out great! I recommend checking it out here, hopefully some of the tools that we talked about will help at least 1 person continue down the path of personal development.

So yesterday was my study day and it didn't really turn out as well as I had hoped. I ended up having to work right up until my leadership coach meeting which means I missed the opportunity for lunch, then I didn't get back home until late, and as soon as I logged onto the university's website to get started on this week's content something came up and I headed to the hospital to see my family. Don't get me wrong though, I'm not angry or upset by not studying by any means, as the day was lost by productive tasks rather than me sitting here playing games or messing around in the house. I am the lead for the first discussion which is due on Monday though so my hand is forced to really knuckle down and get a large amount of study done, but I am ok with that. Until I work out my issue with weekends this will make me be productive and have a clear target on what I would like to achieve.

Today is going to be yet another crazy day, to finish off a crazy week. I kept on task for almost the majority of the half day at work so I managed to progress a few things, but today I have a lot of deadlines so I will need to up the ante. Usually I would be anxious about looking at so many deadlines but I am relaxed and ready for it. I am hoping that is a good sign of things to come.

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Great podcast! Really appreciate you stepping up to share with the community. The episode will be an invaluable resource for those on their 90 day detox journey going forward. Trust me, you are having an impact on many people, even if you don't hear from them directly. :)

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30 July 17

Days to go: 260

So I missed yesterday's journal  because I decided to sleep in, and then the day got so much momentum that I didn't have a chance to sit in front of my computer and come back to it, which is bad on a few levels but ok on a few others. It reminded me how important the hour I get up before everyone else really is - it really helps me get into my flow state by taking some quiet time, a pot of green tea, and hitting the website (and a few other digital chores). It is a form of meditation in its own, reflection, and catching up with how everyone else is doing. I really struggled to get out of bed early again today, but that was not through lack of trying! I am still recovering from my long run yesterday so had no energy to get out of bed, and it took about three or four attempts. My mind was telling me it's fine, just lay here, you will have time to be productive later, but the other side was saying it didn't work out yesterday mate, the most productive people in the world get out of bed at the same time every day. Finally, the productive guy won in the end.


Finally broke the 20km barrier in my run yesterday, which I am super happy about. I tried out gels to help when I started hitting the wall, and they worked a charm! I was worried I would get a massive sugar headache or have the gritty sugar feeling on my teeth afterwards, but it was fine. I think maybe because it's not actually sugar they use in them, it's more of a glucose/caffeine base. All that means is next weekend I want to push for 25km though! I am getting more and more confidence that I can do this marathon after I survive these long runs. I need to beat 8 minute kilometres in order not to be scooped up in the 'slow bus', and I have been averaging 6-7 minute kilometres on the longer runs, and 5-6 minute kilometres on the shorter runs during my lunch break. In the end I am not going to be upset if I don't finish the marathon I think, because I am thoroughly enjoying being out there regularly doing exercise, whereas the last couple of years I was so inconsistent and always ready to find excuses. As a result I have been carrying a bit of extra weight around my belly and finding it difficult to do basic tasks, like walking up a steep hill. Now I look forward to them.

Have not done any study for a few days, which I need to sort out right now as I am the lead for the debate on Monday. I don't plan on moving much from this desk today as a result, but that's fine with me, as I need to recover from yesterday! Hopefully it wont be too hard to get through a lot of content with my family around. It might also mean I will not be able to do any tinkering with electronics this weekend which is a bit sad, as I wanted to have a few projects finished this weekend. I find it difficult to work on them during the week as it gets dark before I have finished with work, picked up my son, and started preparing dinner. It is what is is, and there is no hard deadline on getting them finished, I just would like to give them as gifts to people.

I have sent some messages to friends and family asking to Skype this week, so hopefully that will make me feel social instead of trying to line up some time in person, and lose travel time etc.

Alright, time to get on with the day, can hear movement in the house! 

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My mind was telling me it's fine, just lay here, you will have time to be productive later, but the other side was saying it didn't work out yesterday mate, the most productive people in the world get out of bed at the same time every day. Finally, the productive guy won in the end.

Same thing happens here everyday :D 

It's very impressive to hear your marathon story! 

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31 July 17

Days to go: 259

So a bit late with my post today. I woke up at about 4.30am as my son was crying due to being unwell, so I brought him back to my bed to get a little more shuteye, and the punk pretty much pushed me out of bed! As he was taking up more and more room by laying sideways I couldn't help but chuckle to myself about the song "there was 3 in the bed and the little one said, roll over, roll over..." Oh the innocence of youth. In the end I just got up, I needed to study anyway. I got straight into my study and smashed out 2.5 hours before everyone else woke up, and uploaded my first part of my first assignment for the semester. I'll check in a few minutes to see what the instructor thought. I really hope I can get more proactive with my submissions instead of leaving it until the last minute. All about prioritisation I guess!

Regardless, I'm still feeling good about life. I am surprised I am still this energetic after going to bed at 11pm last night, up at 4.30am, working all day, ran 7km at lunch time, and then cooking dinner. I am sure it will all come crashing down very soon but I am enjoying a glass of red wine I bought for $2.70 to relax and reflect with. I was about to say celebrate but there is not much to celebrate really, need to keep on keeping on.

To be honest not much else happened today. It was busy but nothing else stood out. I was pretty proud of myself that I controlled my emotions when somebody got me angry today at work, as I cannot work out what value they bring to the organisation, so when they wouldn't do something for me I saw red. But rather than snapping and getting angry I took a deep breath and made myself some green tea. I got over it by calling a friend and talking it over, which is great as I kept it professional in the office, but the desired end state will be to not have to talk to anyone about it at all, to take it in my stride and move on. Baby steps. I think I am going to print this out and stick it next to my computer:



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01 Aug 17

Days to go: 258

So today was another crazy day. A lot done, but not the stuff I would really like to get done. I break down my to do list each day into "priority A" and "priority B". Lately I have been getting about 3-4 items off the priority A complete, which means I transfer 3-4 things to the same list the following day. It makes me a bit disappointed seeing me write the same things over again, but right now I can't see a way around it. My work day is peppered with personnel problems that I spent the majority of my time trying to sort out, and then my train of thought is broken.

But, I did manage to get 2 more study submissions done this morning before work. They are 200 words each so not very big, but I like making sure I have done some extra research for each one, even if it is only one journal article to read. I was hoping to work on another 2 today during the day but the opportunity never arose. This may be why I am a bit down as per above paragraph.

One great thing I did discover today is how to set up alerts/rules in outlook. I think email is a very incorrectly or inefficiently used tool, and the more I am mastering these tricks with my inbox I think the better my work flow is. Today I set up some alerts that would automatically move my sent emails to folders based on their subjects, so it should save me a few minutes a day from opening up my sent folder and moving them myself. If I can keep finding these little alerts/rules and save minutes here and there, I might be able to carve an extra hour out of my work routine.

Listened to the Productivity Show today where they were talking about Journalling. The biggest thing that stood out to me was the fact that it is yet another source that says I should be putting in a "grateful for" section to force some reflection on the positive side of life. One of the presenters was on my train of thinking though by saying don't force yourself to try and find a certain amount (3 in his case) of points to be thankful for. If you only have one, then only write one, but try to break it down to 3 different aspects that may make up that one topic. I'll see how I go today.

Rested from running today for a couple of reasons. First is I couldn't remember when was the last day I had a rest from running, assuming 5-6 days, and I could feel my back tensing up which is usually a good sign to have a break. Plus I felt a bit flat today, probably a combination of not really having a clear mind at work, not getting very good sleep lately and feeling a bit stressed about my personal life. I feel confident I will be ready to hit it again tomorrow.

Grateful Section:

Having my own office. The flexibility to be able to close my door to have personal conversations with either my team or my mates on the phone, or to disconnect myself from the work environment if I am feeling frazzled and need a reset, is underrated. This is the first time I have had this experience in its true form and it is great, I don't want to give it up. It also lets me have a little bit of my own space at work, a spot where I can put my teas, snacks, or notes up on the wall without impacting anyone. It's not a massive corner office like everyone seems to aspire to, but it's tucked away in a position that most people from other departments couldn't be bothered walking to see me, so I am left to my own devices most of the time.

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