In my personal quest to become the best version of myself, I set personal goals which I review every day.
Here is my list:
I typically need between 6-7h of continuous sleep to be productive. Before having children, my goal was to sleep 5.30h a day, which supposed an effort over my baseline. However, in the last 4 years, since I had kids, it was rare to have 3 days in a row that I don't have to wake up in the middle of the night to take care of my children. So sleeping 6.30h has been my new challenge.
I follow a training routine from a friend of the Spanish riot police 4 days a week. It involves high-intensity routines that I can do from home, so there is no need for me to go to a gym. I train on Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. There is no single day so far I failed to train.
I follow a diet of certain proteins, kcal, etc, 5 days a week, which I have been struggling to follow. My wife is an amazing cook and I really love food. I have a spreadsheet with the nutrition values of all the foods I eat, and almost every day I track the kcal and proteins I ingest. My cheat days are Saturdays and Sundays when I also train to balance a little.
I put a lot of effort into this task every day. I consider it achieved if she confirms that her day has been great, which is not always the case. I only look at the result, not whether I have done an effort to make it happen. For example, last Thursday, our daughter was awake from 4 am to 6 am, my wife couldn't sleep well, so I knew it was going to be super difficult to tick the day.
5 days a week I do language and math with my children, guess what's my favourite? We follow the Montessori methodology and so far it has been working pretty well. On top of that, language is one of the most important skills I want them to master. I want them to be native in both English and Spanish. In addition, they are learning Chinese. Before the pandemic started, every weekend we went to Chinese class, but during the lockdown, the only thing I have done was to make them watch TV in Chinese. Now that things are opening up, my wife and I need to decide what is the best way for them to learn Chinese.
If my children are fluent in Spanish and English, and have certain knowledge of Chinese, there will be few places in the world where they will not be able to communicate with others.
I'm not particularly good at this task. It involves dedicating time to myself to relax or think. I have been trying to find time during the day, but I honestly struggle since my days are pretty packed.
At least once a week I learn something new related to technology, it can be reading a paper, watching a YouTube video, doing a technical review on my blog or similar. It has to be something outside of my day-to-day work. Over the years, getting knowledge outside my day-to-day job has helped me to become a more effective professional and grow personally.
I have been focusing on this task at least 5 days a week. I'm particularly interested in digital marketing, influence and communication. Learning how to communicate effectively and with clarity is absolutely key in every facet of my life, so I put a lot of effort into this task. The way for me to learn these tasks is through books, podcasts, YouTube videos or courses. I also try to apply what I learn as much as I can to become better and better.
I try to share my thoughts and knowledge on Linkedin at least once a day as well as sharing value through my blog. This also helps me to keep myself informed of the news of the day.
On top of the daily tasks, I have yearly goals that I call resolutions. Every year in January, my wife and I set the goals of the year, and in December, we do a retrospective. The goals are measurable objectives that translate to positive outcomes of the daily tasks, for example, getting my children to count up to 20 in English and Spanish, achieving 25k followers on Linkedin, etc. In the retrospective, we evaluate the level of completeness of each of these goals at 50%, 75% and 100%. We set goals that are difficult for us to achieve and push ourselves forward, therefore we don't always achieve all the goals at 100%.
All these tasks, goals and deadlines are commitments I do with myself, my voluntary obligations. Nobody throws me a party when I abide by them and nobody arrests me when I break them. My own mind is my judge. But over the years I found that making these voluntary obligations is the best way to upgrade myself.