3 Good Things

Inspired by the Science of Happiness podcast episode, I’m starting this practice of writing down three good things that went well that day and reflecting upon them for a minute or two? I look forward to this practice. This will help me focus on the positive things and develop gratitude without even thinking about it.

I shall be sharing them on my Micro.blog, and I welcome everyone to join the practice.

Today’s three good things:

I published the 4th edition of my weekly newsletter, The Musk. It feels good to reflect on the previous days and pick out things I am grateful for, lessons learned and areas of improvement. I’m just four weeks in. I can see myself trying this out for 4 more weeks and beyond.

I started this three good things practice. There’s a lot of research around the Three Good Things practice. I heard about this back in 2018 when I started listening to the Science of Happiness podcast. I did the exercise for a few days and totally forgot about it. Now, I think it is about time to reflect upon the good things that come to us and be grateful for them. Here’s the video of Dr Martin Seligman describing the process:

I had a good workout session. I mixed 10 minutes of jogging followed by 5 minutes of walking and alternated them for around 50 minutes. I felt energised after the session and felt really good to push myself for a bit.

December 7, 2021 journal inspiration gratitude

The Musk 004 - Health is Wealth

Welcome to The Musk Newsletter - Issue 004.

Here I reflect upon the previous week and possibly share an article I read, a podcast I listened to, a video I watched, a photo I shot along with my thoughts and commentaries.

Let us start with the fourth issue.

Week 48 (29/11/2021 - 05/12/2021)

This week was one of the craziest weeks. It was a roller coaster ride. There were few health concerns in the family. I’m so pleased and grateful that the recovery is coming along pretty well. I’m thankful to the people who have helped our family.

Personally, my focus was not at its point this week. Too many things were occupying my mind. I feel that it is causing a lot of stress in me. However, the only way I know to manage is to turn to the Creator and reflect.

I am still thinking of how to move this newsletter forward in terms of content and format? Maybe I will stick with this format for 6 more weeks and tweak it from Issue 011.

This Week I Learned

I learned that finishing your thinking when stuff shows up in terms of determining the outcomes and next-actions is an essential part of stress-free productivity.

Favourites of the Week

To Listen: I really enjoyed this conversation with BJ Fogg on how to build tiny habits, improve our digital life and deal with digital distraction.

To Read: An interesting Twitter thread on how noise affects productivity. I prefer to have a bit of an ambient sound in the background during my focused work sessions.

To Watch: I just binged on Our Yemeni Kitchen YouTube channel. Very simple recipes. More importantly, it is so calming to watch.

Photo of the Week

I got this laptop stand for £7 and this got to be the best purchase of the month!

Quote of the Week

I often head a blank page, What’s on my plate?” and jot below all the things I currently have to get done or give attention to.

From The Pocket Notebook Book by Ray Blake.

One More Thing

I have re-subscribed to the Calm app. I really like their sleep stories. I found a lot of benefits when I learned and practised mindfulness. I want to give this another go. If you are interested, do check the app out. It’s brilliant!

Thanks very much for reading The Musk Newsletter - Issue 004.

December 6, 2021 musk

Back On Calm

I have written about Meditation a few days back. I was pondering the effects of Mindfulness Meditation on me and how it helped me cope with stress and sleep better.

Lately, I’m overwhelmed with emotions and struggle to cope with them. Whenever I feel I’m off balance, I always go back to what I know will work for me. They are Prayer & Meditation. So, I have re-subscribed to Calm app and will be restarting my meditation practice.

I have not set any goals for the practice. If I had to, then it is to meditate 10 minutes for the next 7 days.

December 5, 2021 journal meditation

Finishing Your Thinking

A few weeks back, I subscribed to GTD Connect after a discount offer from the GTD Connect Team. I have been practising GTD on and off since 2015. As a tinkerer of productivity systems and an avid consumer of productivity content, I have tried out various methodologies to get a slight edge in my productivity. I always struggle with the new system and end up coming back to the GTD methodology. I feel like I’m wired for David Allen’s GTD practice.

In one of the GTD Connect podcast episodes, David talks about finishing your thinking when stuff first shows up in your inboxes. It’s called Clarifying. That’s my kryptonite. I always find it difficult to define the expected outcome and the next physical action to move that thing forward. But, rather than asking that important question: what is it?”; I start to go for what I need to do and start organising them into lists. This episode really made me realise that I’m doing something wrong!

Moving forward, when I pick a captured item, I shall ask the following questions:

  1. What is it?
  2. Is it action?
  3. If yes, what is the expected outcome?
  4. What is the next physical action to move closer to the defined outcome?

After answering the above questions, I can start organising the next actions in my fancy task management app.

December 3, 2021 journal productivity gtd

December Target

Today has been a day of meetings and unexpected interruptions. However, I was able to quickly realign my schedule to handle these quite well.

As we enter into the last month of 2021 and the Omicron variant at our doorsteps, these are times for reflection and getting ourselves prepared for whatever the future holds.

One thing I want to start in December is to read 25 pages a day and at least finish one book. If I can complete this one goal for the month, I will be happy as Larry!

December 2, 2021 journal reading

Meditation & Morning Routines

Meditation is something I have been practising on and off for more than 7 years. My consistency with meditation wavers quite a lot. I struggle to maintain the practice because spending 20 minutes first thing in the morning is daunting because I have been told by self-help” gurus (read influencers) that on top of meditation, I should be journaling, exercising, practising gratitude etc. If I follow all of these recommended first things in the morning” practices, I will just end up spending hours and hours doing these practices wondering if they will really bring me any benefit?

Moving forward, I’m going to keep my morning ritual pretty simple:

  • Wake-up & Ablution
  • Make coffee
  • Prayer & read 5 verses of the Holy Quran.
  • Journal for 7 minutes in Obsidian.
  • Shower & get ready for work.

December 1, 2021 journal meditation