Two questions I ask myself daily, Benjamin Franklin and my attitude towards routine

365 texts habits productivity self-knowledge
Reflections and drafts

Goal of the day: 255 words. Written: 891.

When one day Alex asked me what questions I ask myself every day, I wondered, raised my eyes to the ceiling and suddenly remembered the agenda of the American 18th century inventor and diplomat Benjamin Franklin.

This man is famous not only because his face is printed on almost all $100 bills, but also because he started and ended his days with questions to himself.

Benjamin got up quite early in the morning, around 5-6 o'clock, together with the sun. And he started the day with a question: "What good can I do today?'

Then, having thought of his answer to this question for the day, after a short breakfast he would go to work, research, write, think, and at the end of the day, before going to bed, he would ask another: "What good have I done today?'

And despite that, whether it was a weekday or a weekend, winter or summer, this agenda was no different. Benjamin's schedule was really strict. A question for orientation from the morning, the day's work, a second question for work evaluation. Sleep. Repetition.

Benjamin Franklin is still a revered figure, despite the fact that his bones have long since been gnawed by worms. And his agenda and pointed questions helped to achieve what most of the ancestors before you have not yet achieved.

But despite the fact that I adore learning from the most successful people in history and capturing their best experiences... Still, questions I don't wake up every day.

Instead, I do one at the beginning of the week, and the others every time before starting a new activity.

FIRST: The question I ask myself before starting a new activity.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure asking yourself what you want to do today every day is productive. Especially when we live in these times, when we have the Internet, Facebook, e-mails, televisions and phones constantly interrupting us in the middle of the day.

"Hey *insert your friend's name* I found a 10 euro ticket to Cyprus!" Let's drive! I've already bought it, you make a plan of what we're going to do."

Such and similar calls, offers to spend the weekend in super training or "hey can you help me a little bit with this thing?' pops up in the middle of the day out of nowhere…

...And everything that we might have planned in the morning is disrupted. Want to spend the day intently reading Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov? Organize your wardrobe? Spend the day quietly by the lake or picking mushrooms in the Labanor forest?

Ha! No. Only if you don't act like a complete lunatic and disconnect from the world. (You don't often dare to do that, do you? There may be calls major!)

Therefore, planning once a day is a bad idea. Better questions to ask yourself before:

  • When starting a new job (because it will have to be worked on);
  • When buying a new thing (because it will need to be taken care of);
  • When creating a new acquaintance (because you will need to communicate);
  • When reading a new article (because you will need to read something useful);
  • When going to check the mailbox (because you will have to not give up);
  • Sticking your finger towards the Facebook icon (because you won't get the wasted time back);

…And so on.

I ask myself one important question: "Do I really need this?”

Recently, while cleaning the house, I accidentally hit the corner of the wall with the vacuum cleaner pipe, and this, plaster, cracked slightly. The first thought is "Oh shit" and the urge to go get some putty and fix the corner of the wall. It's not difficult and would have taken just 15 minutes to return the wall back to its smooth, white, clean state.

But at the same time I realized - this corner... so I never see it! Oh, and the placement is so insignificant that I would have to look for it specifically to find it! So instead of taking on a new job, I spat. I'll fix it next time I inevitably damage another area of the wall in the future.

Yes, it's a very mundane example, but I apply it everywhere, from writing articles to creating training, to choosing what exercises to use for training participants, and wondering if it's worth buying a spice kit because it's on sale.

  • In the middle of the workday, mom sent a link with an article she found interesting? I ask - is it really necessary? If I don't need to, I postpone reading for the weekend or don't read at all.
  • I saw some nice jeans in the store? I ask - is it really necessary? If I don't need to, I'm not going to measure myself, even though it might be quite fun.
  • A business partner is late in paying debts and you want to write him an angry letter? I ask - is it really necessary? After all, I can write a funny letter - maybe he just forgot out of malice.
  • I'm traveling to a friend's birthday and the voice of tradition tells me to buy a present? I ask - is it really necessary? Indeed, it is more important for that friend that I have fun with him.
  • I wonder if you can give me another example for the situation where I am asking this question? I ask - is it really necessary? However, I believe you already understand what I mean.

Don't ask yourself questions every morning. It is better to raise them before starting work.

Or don't even ask this question, if you don't see the need for it. 😉

TWO: A question I ask myself every week.

Also, every Monday (or Tuesday if I work out on the first day) I review my plans for the coming week.

…I look at the calendar on the wall that has all the weeks of my life expectancy lined up in squares. I look at how it fits quite spaciously on just an A3 sheet, I remember that inevitably I too will have to rot on this earth...

And after taking a breath I ask: "What is the most important thing I can do in the coming week?".

What helps me is that I rewrite last week's work into a list in a notebook on the same Monday. So I find that if I wrote an exciting article last week, I don't want to fall behind this one.

I write down ideas of what I would like to do and it becomes a preparation for the week.

It's not a plan because I get so much new knowledge every day that things can change quickly. For example, I might find out that the work I'm doing is no longer needed at all. Instead, it is a reminder of what I would like to achieve.

I'm still alive though. And I can pursue my dreams.

I work every day. I repeat next week.

And miracles happen.

I know it's simple, but these two questions, one before starting new jobs and one at the start of each week, help me stay productive. And it works for me!

Try it too?

Asking yourself questions,

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