Miscellanous

Revisited: An Entrepreneur’s Routine

By October 12, 2021No Comments

The last time I discussed this topic was in August 2020: https://aman-agarwal.com/2020/08/25/getting-into-a-routine-as-a-solo-entrepreneur/

What Happened

It seems like stress, productivity, procrastination and discipline are all intensely interconnected.

Over the last 13 months, I’ve been through many stages of crippling stress and procrastination, when I also felt very unproductive. At the same time, I’ve also made some terrific changes in my life that I can’t take for granted:

  • Had a 132 day unbroken streak of Chinese reading on LingQ
  • NoFap streak unbroken (and still ongoing) for 148 days straight. I never thought I could have achieved this, without the help of certain friends who motivated me to stay hanging.
  • Started working out, with 5 consecutive weeks of completing 3 progressive workouts each week without falling off the wagon completely.

However, this does not completely negate the damage caused by other things:

  • Days when I’d just watch Youtube or anime the whole time.
  • Sleep schedules being very erratic, getting pushed further back down to 7-8am on certain days.
  • Losing my Wim Hof breathing and meditation practice.
  • Losing my Chinese and French daily study and practice.
  • Losing my late night stretching/flexibility practice.
  • Not keeping my accounting and financial reporting up to date every month.

Where I am right now

As I’ve said in my previous post, a routine is the most fundamental infrastructure required for any profession.

As of today, I have the following challenges that I believe my routine needs to help me with:

(First a token of gratitude to myself: I do not hate myself for my lack of perfection, because I know it’s a journey, and I’m becoming a better person every year. Until last year, NoFap was a distant dream for me. Now, it’s slowly, cautiously becoming a part of my identity.)

  1. When I wake up, I feel like I need to check if I’ve missed something because of sleeping so late. I need to check that I don’t have any urgent meetings, or anything I need to prepare for.
    • Instead, I want to feel a sense of calm energy. I want to feel motivated to do whatever I need to accomplish that day. I want to feel like I have all the time in the world but can’t wait to get started, instead of feeling like I don’t look forward to it.
    • Key: wake up early, and don’t have meetings early in the day.
  2. I don’t look forward to Mondays. I feel a sense of pain and hurt that I have to show up to work again. This means there’s something I’m not enjoying about my work, especially teaching. I don’t feel confident in my teaching abilities? How come I’m not feeling grateful that I have a teaching session, like I once did before when Wilson was my main student?
    • Instead, I want to feel like WOW, tomorrow I get to work with my team again and we’re going to crush it! I don’t want to WAIT for Monday to come up so I can work on really cool stuff again.
    • Key: be prepared way in advance for the week.
  3. I feel “lost” throughout the day and get decision fatigue very quickly. Having my dad constantly ask me for stuff is also a problem, but not the main problem.
    • Instead, I want to feel a certain CLARITY most of the day. I want to know what I need to be doing. The only interruptions should come from a sudden idea that grips me and I want to note it down/discuss it with someone.
    • I don’t want to feel like “oh where did all that time go?”
    • Key: have only 2-3 things to do in a given day, and book focusmate sessions beforehand.
  4. I get a lot of urges throughout the day to look up Google or Youtube or LinkedIn for something.
    • Naturally, I don’t want to do that. Having set up Pause and Limit for all these websites, and then removing them from the toolbar should work great!
    • Done!
  5. I haven’t been producing enough content and threads on social media. I haven’t been posting enough podcasts consistently. I haven’t been posting in slack groups consistently. I haven’t been going OUT to market and self-promote.
    • Naturally I need to build into my routine the time to do that.
    • I also want time for polishing my craft: teaching the stuff that actually matters.
    • Taking quotes from my book and putting them out on social media.
    • Writing pages and descriptions for my podcast episodes.
    • Cutting out snippets for podcast episodes.

So what are the major chunks of my week?

  1. Motivation: listening to motivational quotes, and viewing my immediate goals on my vision board. 2x per day.
  2. Working out and nutrition: first thing to start the day on MWF.
  3. Writing — latest podcast episode description, and/or new book chapter, or email
  4. Reviewing and editing
  5. Creating new content for social media? Only use canva/notepad.
  6. Meetings and podcast recordings — ideally only 3 days a week.
  7. Language learning in a Focusmate session.
  8. Shutdown alarm at 3am.

DAILIES

  1. Motivational audio in the morning as soon as I wake up
  2. Check email and messages really quick
  3. Workout and nutrition
  4. Sit down, review vision board for 2 minutes
  5. Start off with focusmate sessions dedicated to the day’s WRITING tasks.
  6. Move on to focusmate sessions for language learning tasks.
  7. Review vision board and goals again.
  8. Move on to focusmates for social media calendar OR the editing tasks OR admin tasks.
  9. You’re done for the day. Do some journaling. Set up next day’s tasks.
  10. Go to sleep.

What I need for this:

  • ONE assigned writing task per day. Maximum of two.
  • TWO focusmate sessions dedicated to language learning (25 mins or 50 mins each)
  • LESS THAN= 3 assigned social media or admin tasks per day. Combined should not take over 50 minutes of focused effort.
  • AT MOST ONE assigned editing tasks per day.
  • ALL RECORDINGS scheduled only on Thurs and Friday, all MEETINGS only on Wed, Thurs, Friday.
  • ONE focusmate session for reviewing end of day and journaling.
  • TURN OFF laptop after all the day’s tasks are done.

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