The Choice

What distinguishes you as an individual?

Is it your endowments – whether you were born rich or poor, pretty or pithy?

They do influence your development; but are they the measure of your own achievements?

Is it your experiences – the things you’ve lived, the people you’ve known?

They do shape your personality; but are they all there is to you?

Or is it rather your choices: what you do with your endowments, how you react to your experiences?

And which among your choices best defines you?

I’ll tell you my pick: how you spend your time.

Your smallest daily effort determines your highest lifetime accomplishment.

Better be contented with the plenitude of your present day’s efforts than anxious about the length of days stretching to your goal’s fruition. 

(See my article “How To Plan Your Perfect Life” for more on that topic.)

The Goal

Try to imagine your perfect day.

A morning when you wake up energized, purposeful, radiant with aliveness, and tingling with anticipation to answer yet again your calling, to walk further yet on your path – self-ignited, self-chosen, self-driven, and self-willed.

A morning when you ooze confidence in your ability to pursue your plans to the end, to achieve your goals, to complete your tasks, when your will grows as you surmount each obstacle, win each challenge, resist each temptation.

A day when you honor your ideals with every choice, when you give your best in every moment, you are present with awareness in every experience, and strive for accuracy in every thought and act.

A day when you feel the creator of your life rather than its spectator, the master of your fate rather than its victim, employing yourself to your utmost capacity rather than wasting away your potential, and pursuing self-improvement with unwavering dedication rather than succumbing to self-satisfied mediocrity.

A night when you fall asleep feeling truly at peace, joyful and fulfilled; having lived your day without regret, and paved the way to an even better tomorrow through your efforts.

A night when your calling grows ever clearer as tomorrow’s goals nascent in your mind’s eye, paving an even better laid-out path for tomorrow’s strivings.

Take a moment to recall; when was the last time your day felt like that? 

How would it feel to live even one day like that?

What if every day could feel like that?

If you’re willing to make the choice, it can be so for you as it is for me.

The Process

How do you attain your perfect day, every day?

Through strength of will, self-effort.

Effort alone is not enough, though; you must also make the correct effort, walk the right way.

Through clarity of purpose; self-thinking. Write down:

a) A detailed, unambiguous, sharply defined destination, and

b) A course of action that provides the most efficient route to that destination, a map of your journey.

Making the highest effort with the highest effectiveness will yield the highest results.

The simplified sequence of the process goes like this:

  1. Clarify your values.

E.g., creativity is the ultimate value for me, since nothing would exist without creativity. Therefore, I strive to define my every goal so as to maximize my contribution to creativity.

                 2. Clarify your goals.

E.g., evolution is an ultimate expression of creativity, and hence my ultimate goal; all my other goals are woven around the nexus of helping bring about human evolution in harmony with Nature.

                 3. Calculate which daily activities, most consistent with your values, are most useful for your goals.

E.g., I spend time every day developing my own form of meditation, refining my perceptions, thoughts, and emotions so as to improve myself for the sake of my future children and community.

                 4. Discern which activities best harmonize with one another if pursued in parallel to support each other’s completion.

E.g., I spend time every day working on my self-improvement blog, so as to share my learning journey with other people, and learn from them in turn.

                  5. Discern which activities best follow one another in sequence so that each activity in the previous sequence best prepares you for each matching activity in the following sequence.

E.g., After having grown my self-improvement blog, I will start an education blog to aid me learn how to take care of my own children and how to better share my lessons with them and others.

The Prerequisites

There are several ingredients of chief importance in enabling you to follow the schedule of your choice, particularly one constantly demanding high levels of physical and mental energy. Any deficiency therein adds up over time to erode your effectiveness and eventually compromise your ability to pursue it. 

These are components of your daily life that can be improved, and whose improvement increases your quality of life and your ability to pursue your goals, regardless of the specifics of those goals. 

                1. Adequate Rest.

The most efficient sleep is that which offers the most rest in the least time, and that sleep is driven by your own biological clock. By sleeping in harmony with your own body’s rhythms and waking up with the sun instead of using an alarm clock, you ensure plenty of energy as well as plenty of time for the day.

Please give a read to Good Sleep for Good Learning, which provides a useful means to determine your own optimal timing and quantity of sleep, as well as useful advice to improve your quality of sleep.

                2. Adequate Nutrition.

The most efficient food is that which ensures the most nutrients with the least calories, and that is food consisting in natural, wholesome ingredients, chosen and combined according to your own body’s demands.

Please give a read to The Healthiest Way of Eating Plan, which offers a healthy, tasty eating plan that ensures one hundred percent or more of all of the body’s daily nutrient needs, a brilliant example of how to assemble nutritious and low-calorie meals.

I use the PlanToEat app to store my favorite recipes, make my weekly meal plan by dragging and dropping them into each day, and auto-generate my shopping list.  It makes shopping and finding recipes a breeze. I have my recipes handy on my tablet so that I’m ready to access them, and I memorize my favorites so that I already know what to do when I get cooking, which saves quite a bit of time.

(It would be great if the app also included a nutrient chart auto-generator for the weekly meal plan; I’m still on the lookout for that.)

See my article “My Plant-Based Food-Plan” for more references.

                  3. Adequate Fitness

The most efficient exercise is that which enables you to attain the most results in the least time, be they weight loss, strength gain, endurance gain, or any other goal(s), so long as those results are sustainable and healthy (so no steroid abuse!). 

MovNat by Edward LeCorre is the single most effective and healthy training system I know. It is “to fitness what organic is to food”; fitness “for the real world”. It does so much more than merely train strength and endurance, and even that it does better than any other.

If for some reason you won’t train outside nor join a MovNat facility, a home gym is a convenient alternative since it saves you money in the long run, it saves you time since you no longer have to travel back and forth from the gym, and it saves you excuses like “it’s raining/cold/… outside” to skip training. 

Insanity Max30 and P90X3 is the most effective combination of home gym training systems that I know of. Insanity by Shaun T is cardio-focused, max-interval and uses only your body weight. P90X3 by Tony Horton is strength-focused, balanced, and requires minimal equipment (dumbbells, pull-up bar, and training mat). They each take only thirty minutes a day, and together they cost just a Franklin through the Beachbody On Demand annual membership.

Running or swimming, yoga or pilates, dancing or martial arts, and others can fill the role of fitness training as well; it depends on what you want to achieve.

                  4. Adequate Hygiene.

Taking a shower after exercising – perhaps a short, cold, testosterone-boosting one -, including washing your hair, does wonders for your body. With just the right amount of quality perfume and shining white teeth, you’ll feel even better about your fit self, and so will others.

The Logistics

You ought to be prepared to go about your daily schedule most effectively; to think out beforehand every practical, logistical or economic issue that could arise.

Stuff You Can Use:

  1. At least four sets of interchangeable clothes for winter and another four for summer available in a quick access drawer. You may need more depending on how long you can wear each without noticeably worsening hygiene and how often you are washing clothes (I do mine once a week, and can wear each twice without smelling worse).

                 2. At least three packing boxes (this Glasslock set works great) and a two-liter glass carry-on bottle (I love using this Sunkey bottle) so that you can bring with you food cooked ahead of time and filtered water (I use the Berkey filter since it seems the most powerful, comprehensive filter and is plastic-free), as well as a cool backpack to carry them with as you travel around.

                 3. An mp3 player and some quality earphones (I use Etymotik’s ER4 MicroPRO since they seem the most accurate), a couple of books, a pen and a pocket notebook for jotting down your thoughts.

                 4. Means of Transit. I prefer to do so on a bike since it saves time and money and provides fitness, but I also have an annual card for Madrid since the public transport system here is excellent, and going by bike can be pretty dangerous.

Stuff You Can Plan

What are your fitness goals? What will your diet look like based on them? What kind of cooking tools and ingredients will you need to pursue it? Where will you go shopping for those ingredients, or will you order them to be delivered? 

What are your skill-gain goals? What classes will you attend to gain them? What tools do you need for those classes? When and where will those classes be held? How will you get there, and how long will it take you?

What are your experience-gain goals? Where do you want to travel, and what do you want to try? How much money will that cost, and how will you be making that money? Will your means of making money give you the time to pursue those experiences, or will you be better off choosing a different means? 

You need to map out such details in advance and be prepared to pursue your daily schedule with all of its demands met ahead of time; that’s what a plan is supposed to do, after all.

The Schedule

You can write it in an app, in your bullet journal, or just print it out. You can plan your whole week ahead, and simply adjust a few items for each following day on your previous day. It needs to include daily activities, including your daily tasks, and their time blocks.

The following is my daily routine, for instance. It’s not quite as strict as the timings would give the impression; I don’t have over twenty alarms going off throughout the day at precise minutes. 😉 Sometimes I read half the day and write half the other. But I never skip my sleep time, my exercises, or my meals, and I always write at least a thousand words and read at least a chapter or article every day.

Time

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

6:00 – 6:15

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

6:15 – 7:15

–         Exercise

–        Exercise

–        Exercise

–        Exercise

–        Exercise

7:15 – 7:30

–         Showering

–         Cooking

–         Breakfast

–         Showering

–         Cooking

–         Breakfast

–         Showering

–         Cooking

–         Breakfast

–         Showering

–         Cooking

–         Breakfast

–         Showering

–         Cooking

–         Breakfast

7:30 – 8:00

–         Cuddling

–         Cuddling

–         Cuddling

–         Cuddling

–         Cuddling

8:00 – 10:00

–         Teaching

–         Snack

–         Teaching

–         Snack

–         Teaching

–         Snack

–         Teaching

–         Snack

–         Teaching

–         Snack

10:00 – 12:00

–         Blogging

–         Shower

–         Dressing

–         Blogging

–         Shower

–         Dressing

–         Blogging

–         Shower

–         Dressing

–         Blogging

–         Shower

–         Dressing

–         Blogging

–         Shower

–         Dressing

12:00 – 12:15

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Lunch

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Lunch

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Lunch

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Lunch

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Lunch

12:15 – 15:15

–         Acting

–         Acting

–         Acting

–         Acting

–         Acting

15:15 – 15:30

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Snack

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Snack

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Snack

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Snack

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Snack

15:30 – 18:30

–         Writing

–         Writing

–         Writing

–         Writing

–         Writing

18:30 – 19:30

–         Reading

–         Reading

–         Reading

–         Reading

–         Reading

19:30 – 19:45

–         Dinner

–         Talking

–         Dinner

–         Talking

–         Dinner

–         Talking

–         Dinner

–         Talking

–         Dinner

–         Talking

19:45 – 20:00

–         Travel

–         Talking

–         Travel

–         Talking

–         Travel

–         Talking

–         Travel

–         Talking

–         Travel

–         Talking

20: 00 – 21:00

–         Learning

–         Learning

–         Learning

–         Learning

–         Learning

21:00 – 21:15

Podcasts

Travel

Journaling

Drink

Podcasts

Travel

Journaling

Drink

Podcasts

Travel

Journaling

Drink

Podcasts

Travel

Journaling

Drink

–         Podcasts

–         Travel

–         Journaling

–         Drink

21:15 – 21: 45

Showering

Undressing

Cuddling

Showering

Undressing

Cuddling

Showering

Undressing

Cuddling

 Showering

Undressing

Cuddling

Showering

Undressing

Cuddling

21: 45 – 22:00

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

Prayer

22:00 – 6:00

Sleeping

Sleeping

Sleeping

Sleeping

Sleeping

6:00 – 6:15

  • Remember at least four distinct dream-sequences from last night’s sleep.
  • Pray to give gratitude, and to ask for the strength and wisdom to attain my day’s goals and ideals, feeling the intent and energy pouring in and out; to awaken my senses, kickstart my self-observation, and retain focus on my goals and ideals throughout the day, only standing up once awake; and to replay last evening’s mental visualizations for love, virtue, productivity, creativity health, wealth, opportunity, and more, and for achievements of the day to come.
  • Wash my mouth, spit residue into a sink, then drink half a liter of filtered lemon-water.
  • Get dressed for my fitness routine and grab my exercise backpack ready with a big water bottle, fresh towels etc.
  • Go out into the garden to practice it.

6:15 – 7:15+

  • Do 30 minutes of Insanity Max30,
  • Afterward do 30 minutes of P90X3.

7: 15+ – 7:30

  • Shower with homemade natural soap after the work-out.
  • Make and eat breakfast with 20g+ of protein and fiber.
  • Write a page in my morning pages journal.
  • Wash my teeth, including the molars.

7: 30 – 8: 00

  • Cuddle with my wife.

8: 00 – 10: 00-

  • Work at my remote, part-time job as a Udemy TA until the Q&A is devoid of unanswered questions and pending replies.
  • Listen to productivity-enhancing music while working. Add a new track to my collection.
  • 10: 00 – 12: 00
  • Once the Udemy work is finished, write an article for each of my blogs and a post to share it on each of my social media profiles.
  • If there is time, work on my other business options, e.g. making and publishing a Udemy course of my own.
  • Take a healthy snack.
  • Drink another half a liter of water.
  • Listen to productivity-enhancing music while writing and exploring. Add another new track to my collection.
  • Get dressed to aces, perfumed and combed.

12: 00 – 12: 15

  • Travel to my acting classes.
  • Listen to audiobooks and podcasts while traveling.
  • Write in my journal and notebooks while listening.

12: 15 – 15: 15

  • Do acting classes, also taking notes; during breaks, make contacts; during dead time, read on acting. If tired and classes are boring, take a nap.
  • Take lunch during the first break.
  • Drink another half a liter of water.

15: 15 – 15: 30

  • Travel to the nearest park.
  • Listen to podcasts and audiobooks en route to the park.
  • Write in my journal and notebooks while listening.

15: 30 – 18: 30

  • Take a snack in the park.
  • Write for my books.
  • Write for myself.
  • Observe Nature.
  • Observe myself.

18: 30 – 19: 30

  • Read quality books from my list of reading priorities.
  • Listen to beautiful classical music while reading.

19: 30 – 20: 00

  • Speak with my wife about our day and ideas.
  • Show each other what we created.
  • Have dinner as a romantic picnic or classic date.
  • Drink another half a liter of water.
  • Date my wife in various ways, e.g. take a course together, go to the opera or theatre together, go to the cinema together, go to a restaurant together, going to a festival or another event together, go shopping together, etc.

20: 15 – 20: 30

  • Travel to courses

20: 30 – 21: 30

  • Learn skills – Guitar, Canto, Spanish, Dance, Aikido, Yoga etc.

21: 30 – 21: 45

  • Travel home
  • Listen to audiobooks and podcasts while traveling.
  • Write in my journal and notebooks while listening.
  • Get undressed and ready for bed.
  • Ready my exercise pack and travel pack for the coming days.

21: 45 – 22: 15

  • Cuddle with my wife.

22:15 – 22: 30

  • Light yoga and meditation to relax the mind and body, and to bring to mind my goals and ideals again.
  • Prayer to give gratitude for the day and its lessons, and to ask for strength and wisdom to attain my life’s goals and ideals.
  • Visualization for love, virtue, productivity, creativity health, wealth, opportunity, and more, and for achievements of the day to come

The Question

What’s your ideal schedule like? What helped you improve your days? Let me know if in the comments section!