Hacking my Life

I am trying to bring a little structure to my life. I don’t always follow it, but I love the process of setting it all up. Maybe this time, just by writing it all down on the blog, I’ll have a bit more follow through.

I’ve noticed that I’ve been bad at paying bills on time, finding time to write, eating a good lunch, working out, dealing with my email, up and bed-times and other processes. It is my goal to rope all of these things into some semblance of organization.

Here’s some of the things I’m planning.

  • Get up between 6:30-7am. Right now I get up at 7:15 and scramble too much in the morning.
  • Brush/Floss in the morning and at night. I’m terrible about flossing at night. I need to make it part of my daily ritual before I go to bed.
  • Breakfast. I get a lot of flack for not eating breakfast. I’m leaning toward the Carnation Breakfast mixes you add to milk.
  • Cell phone usage. Because of my job, I no longer look like the douche with the cell phone permanently hooked to my belt like it’s a Star Trek communicator. Consequently, I don’t check any messages or receive calls until after 5p. This may come back to haunt me, but so far I like it.
  • Stop looking to see if I have email. I can’t access my personal email at work, but I can check and see if anyone has emailed me. It has become a bad habit and needs to stop. I’ve deleted the shortcut from my work computer and so far the urge is subsiding.
  • Dealing with personal email. I will not look at my email until after 5p. So, if you send me something during the day it won’t get read until after 5p and I’ll respond as best as I can then. I’m also leaning toward moving to Google Mail.
  • I’ve decided I can afford lunch at work or bring my own. I can take a 30 minute lunch and leave at 4 or take an hour lunch and leave at 4:30. I’ve been taking an hour lunch, going home, reading/responding to email and usually eating fast food crap. Not always, but too much of the time. I could be spending as much as $6 for lunch. It has to stop. At work, I can eat a great salad with a diet green tea for $3.
  • Reading my magazines. I subscribe to magazines and then hardly open them. So, at lunch I’ll be reading my latest magazine and eating my salad.
  • Part time job needs to be a hyper-focused two-hours. I have a part-time job doing website updates and it either takes me a ton of time to do or hardly any time at all. My goal here is to prioritize my workload then see what needs to be done to the site to make it better. And leave after two hours.
  • No more junk food… mostly. A habit I’m attempting to break is the bad afternoon snack (chips, candy). I can’t buy chips, cookies or candy of any kind or I will eat the whole bag. I’m allowing myself popcorn at the movies.
  • Drink more water. I drink coffee in the morning and orange flavored water in the afternoon. I like Diet Rite Cherry, but I need to drink more water. A new jug might do the trick.
  • Working out. I started a workout regiment at the YMCA after the part-time job, but stopped a week or so ago because of my time constraints. I need to get back into it. I think I’m going to switch which Y I’m going to because the Men’s Only workout area translates into a lot of old men walking around naked and I’m a little tired of that.
  • Use my calendar/notebook more. I created a calendar notebook at the beginning of the year and have not used it to its full potential. I used to mark my bill due dates with a similar calendar and for some reason moved away from it. I’m making myself go through it each day and write bill due dates, weekend events and other dates each week. No more late fees or forgetting an important date.
  • Google Calendar. I’m seriously looking at the benefits of using Google Calendar. I know many people live and die by it. I’m unconvinced, but willing to take a good hard look at it.
  • Online banking. I have online banking and can manage my accounts from my laptop. I go weeks without reviewing my information. I need to look at it daily and also take advantage of where I might be able to pay a few more bills online.
  • Thinking time. I have several writing projects and I need time to research and think. I’m giving myself at least an hour each night to write.
  • Delete extraneous web stuff from my life. I’m still on Match.com. Delete. I’m on reunion.com. Delete. I’m keeping the LinkedIn and FaceBook accounts, but I’m only checking them sporadically. The blog remains, of course.
  • Food. I need to eat better. My diet has been crappy as of late. I need help with this one badly.
  • Reading. I use Google Reader to star things I want to look at later and end up spending a great deal of time online. I need to curtail that so I can read more. I’m not sure how much time I’m going to give myself here. Probably an hour.
  • Television. I’m seriously considering pulling back on how many shows I watch this Fall season. I used to watch The Daily Show… daily. Off my Tivo. I used to watch Attack of the Show nighty. Off my Tivo. I used to watch Keith Olbermann pretty much daily. Off my Tivo. I can see any of the highlights of these shows at anytime online.
  • Going to bed by midnight. I’m not sure I can go to bed any earlier.

That’s it so far. Lots of ideas. Hopefully, some of these proposals and habits stick. I’ll check back in after a couple of months.