2018 Year in Review

This last year has contained a huge change - moving back to the States after a decade abroad. It’s been really light on travel and publishing, but incredibly heavy on new techniques and theories which have already had a gigantic impact on this entire project. Here are the highlights:

-Formalized a flossing habit
-Added Olympic weight lifting to my exercise habit
-Experimented with habit removal by successfully removing drinking beer

Personal Records and New Highs
-Completed a 90 Day No-Beer Challenge
-started and successfully ushered a flossing habit from tiny habits all the way to a habit terminus, a habit that is totally complete
-With easy access to group meetings in the States I had my first social discharge of a habit by joining in on a group meditation.
-Took meditation to a new high by meditating throughout the entirety of a horror series (The Haunting of Hill House) and thoroughly enjoyed it despite hating horror because of the fear involved
-Solved a decades old issue - shin splints - with the help of Kelly Starrett’s mobilizations. Running is something I’ve always wanted to do, yet I’ve always stopped because of some kind of foot pain. No more!
-Passed 4 years of meditating, writing, and recording.
-Passed 3 years of consistent exercise
-Went from 35 lb dumbbell clean and presses to 55 lbs in 11 weeks (missing 3 sessions)

-Finally completed my book proposal and query letter and started pitching it to agents.
-Changed my book idea, and started working on a second proposal

Theories and Experiments
-Created a fully 3 dimensional moveable model of a full habit, something I don’t believe has ever been done before.
-Created a grand unified theory of behavioral change and self help
-Mapped the terrain of quitting
-Created a full model of the process of writing

New Techniques
-Created a Deep Work Protocol based on Cal Newport’s work
-Created and tested Structured Randomness, applying it to meal planning
-Created the ultimate guide to writing
-Figured out how to efficiently overcome the problem of limited natural progress, applying it to meditation and working out.
-Learned to gain entry into jhana through anger and anxiety
-Learned how to use noting the self to get to 4th jhana
-Threaded different types of meditations together to reach deeper states
-Experimented with and got to within a hair’s breadth of mastering sleep.

-Started reading Daniel Ingrams highly expanded second edition of Mastering the Core Teachings of the Buddha
-Learned about and practiced Mindful Scrolling, a new meditation technique
-Started reading James' Clear’s book, Atomic Habits

Attempts and Failures
-Ended a social media habit that had already gotten to super habit status
-Attempted GMB fitness
-Attempted a 30 day strict paleo challenge

Travel & New Experiences
-Traveled to Valencia
-Visited Italy (Bologna and Florence). Saw the original instruments of the old scientists as they tried to experiment and quantify temperature, gravity, and electricity, which was really exciting giving it’s exactly what I’m trying to do for self development.
-Traveled to Houston and Albuquerque
-Moved back to the States, and successfully moved into central Houston
-Hosted 5 people
-Stuck with a ban on travel, passing up trips to Greenland, Nunavut, Grenada, Barbados, and Portland
-Tried 3 different meditation groups - the Chinese Jade Dragon Temple, the local Zen center, and an insight meditation group
-Went to a writer’s group meeting
-Started pitching top tier outlets like the NYT

The techniques section has some amazing stuff. I have huge plans for the next year simply because I now finally have the methods to accomplish them. I want to:

-Quit drinking
-Remove negative self talk and totally transform my base mental code
-Master eating
-Master pitching
-Get published like a madman

That might seem like a lot, but as one wise 3 year old would say, It’s just 5 things

Happy New Year!