Day 34: my next habit/system

Today marks the first day of a new system, or habit that I'm working on. This new system is to focus is to achieve 1 thing, no matter how long it takes: ship my product, Young Makers.

It's okay even if Young Makers doesn't work out. What I want to achieve out of this system is to know that I now have the discipline and cumulative know-how to work on an idea through to its complete state. In short, I want to ship products.

Today hasn't been great for me because I'm still down with sinus/flu – i don't know which it is. It's a huge productivity drain. Imagine not being able to breathe properly and your food has no taste.

On the brighter side, having worked on my systems already made me feel that I had some progress with something. This is better than nothing, really.

Here's my 1% improvement towards shipping Young Makers. I'm done with the Interview page's early stage mockup. It doesn't have to be perfect because it will become better as I ship it and my users tell me what to improve on. I will wield time as a weapon for myself towards building better products.

A Reminder on Systems

Why am I focusing so much on systems? There is no way i can control an outcome fully. It's just like how you can't predict with 100% certainty if it's going to rain tomorrow. That's just how the world works – there's a lot of randomness out of anyone's control.

What's not random however, is my ability to learn and grow with my systems. It's something I can definitely control with almost absolute certainty.

Don't believe me? It's something that Stoicism, a school of philosophy that has been around since the 3rd century teaches [1][2].

“The chief task in life is simply this: to identify and separate matters so that I can say clearly to myself which are externals not under my control, and which have to do with the choices I actually control. Where then do I look for good and evil? Not to uncontrollable externals, but within myself to the choices that are my own . . .” — Epictetus, Discourses, 2.5.4–5

The quote is from Epictetus, one of the great stoic philosophers. The idea of what Epictetus is sharing, from my understanding reflects why we should focus on systems rather than outcomes.

This philosophy has guided some of history's most respected emperors. It has to mean something. Don't be too quick to dismiss philosophy as an academic subject. It has practical uses for everyone, if only they seek it.

"...Being accountable is not easy, and at times it is very unpleasant, but if you are serious about your goals, you must take ownership of your situation." — Unknown source

It's okay for me to be troubled by my health and emotions. It's something I accept as a fact of life. That shit happens. I'm not going to blame myself for it. What I can focus on is my systems.

A good trick for convincing myself to stick with my systems is to think of how a 1% improvement everyday leads to 37x improvement in a year, and approximately 1,427x improvement in 2 years. The inverse of this would mean, deproving by 1% daily results in being 3% of our original capabilities in a year's time. Definitely not where I want to be.

This is only if I can be consistent everyday. That is something I can definitely control, just as how I have been able to control the habit of writing daily. So much as to write for 34 consecutive days.

Interesting Links

💰 Wanna recession-proof your biz? "Get closer to the money"

You can't stop recessions, it's a natural correction of the economy. Amy hoy shares her take on how to make money even during a recession. In an ethical way of course.

📸 Realistic Income from Stock Photography – Q1 Stock Photo Earnings 2019 One of the “sawdust” I can sell for extra side income is my photos. Why not sell practice photos I take of buildings and interesting things as stock photos. It's a possible system i'll explore in future. Let's climb the stairs one at a time first.

🧠 Roam Research: a simple input to output workflow

Anne-laure has written a particularly interesting post about how she uses Roam. It's almost always helpful to learn how people are using Roam to create their 2nd brains. Even better yet, having a peek into how they use their 2nd brain in their daily workflow would really allow me to adapt their methods into my own workflow. It's better than just following theory. Application is key to learning.

🔈 Does Sonos have a moat?

Adam Keesling and Nathan Baschez uses strategy theory to break down if Sonos – the expensive speakers, has a moat. There's a lot to learn from their writing style. Heck, even the excerpt is a great hook. Learning about strategy from great writers like them would allow me to build up a holistic understanding of business that might come handy in the future.

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