What did I learn from my Evolve Journal?
Having recently just finished an Evolve Journal and getting stuck into the next I’ve started a new 6 month journey so now felt like a good time to write about my experience and what has changed for me personally.
In the onboarding section of the journal, we discuss the 4 fundamental pillars of happiness, those being; relationships, health, wealth and freedom.
We strongly believe that to be truly happy we need to be in a good place in all of these areas.
Think about it now, is it really possible to be truly happy and content if you are seriously deficient in any one of those three areas?
For example, what would be the point in being fabulously wealthy with all the time in the world if you have no friends or family to share it with?
During my last journal, my areas of focus were more around freedom and health as going into the journal I felt I was in a really good place with my relationships.
Of course, there is always room for improvement but I am very content with the people in my life and the quality time I get to share with my loved ones.
Using healthy habits to build happiness
The habit section of the journal is where I set about incrementally improving my health and I’ve outlined my daily habits below.
Note however that this is the level I have spent the last 6 months building towards. I have created a routine that works best for me using the process we outline in our onboarding course. This is my routine, you can create one that works for you. The start of the journal will coach you so you can to build healthy habits and disrupt negative ones for yourself, in a way that works for you.
My daily habits
- Gym – Weight training following a guided plan
- Cold Shower
- Spanish Grammar or Vocabulary training
- Movement/ Cardio – Typically either jogs, sprints or ab circuits
- Stretching / yoga
- Low carb for the day
- Alcohol free for the day
The daily habits above helped to hold me accountable and there were many times where keeping note of these daily habits allowed me to not miss the mark.
There were quite a few occasions where it would get to the end of the day and realise I had perhaps missed out meditating or stretching and then would then quickly do that just before I go to bed.
All of the above habits were designed to keep me focused and to give me the mental clarity to perform to a high level in my work and social situations, turning my body into a well-oiled machine.
When I look back at when I was able to get into a consistent groove and carry out these habits for weeks on end without interruption, the comments I made in the ‘Why I’m smiling’ and ‘Things I’m pondering’ section of the journal all point towards this being highly effective.
My work improved and I felt great mentally while I was doing it.
This routine gave me structure and the foundations to make each day repeatedly successful.
Because I wasn’t eating shit or binge drinking, I felt like I was always on top form which meant I showed up in my peak state more often both professionally and in my relationships.
Being able to do this made me feel better about myself and created a positive feedback loop.
I can also see how the effect of a busy social calendar and too many drinks at the pub had a knock-on effect for the next few days in my eating and the amount of time I spent maintaining my healthy habits.
That is not to say you can never have a blowout but it's just important you recognise the effects it can have in all other areas of your life.
As they say all things in moderation. Even moderation.
This is something that I struggled with as, being honest, ‘partying’ seems to be a big part of the culture in my professional and personal lives.
Using journaling to build momentum
This leads me on to momentum ‘the big Mo’ as some in the self-help community like to call it.
If any of you have pushed a car you will have seen momentum at work.
The first 30cm is the hardest, where the biggest force is required to move the car from a standstill into a roll takes a lot of effort.
When the car starts rolling it gets easier and easier and you can get the car to pick up a fair amount of speed.
You are very similar to the car.
The hardest part is starting.
If you are often stopping and starting it's harder to achieve your goals as you are constantly in the start phase and you’re not taking advantage of the momentum.
You are essentially meandering through life with the handbrake on.
I believe in the power of momentum so strongly that I will do my utmost to maintain my habits every day, even if one of the daily habits I have is to work out and I have completely run out of time I will do a quick 5-minute work out at the end of the day to maintain consistency and Mo.
The last 6 months of journaling really showed me the compounding effects of consistency. I feel like I have built a 'stick to it' muscle that has made consistent action in many areas easier. I am thinking good action each day surely makes for a better person tomorrow.
How can you boost productivity with 'Eat the Frog'?
‘Eat the frog’ contributed to my overall goals massively in the last six months, especially professional goals of mine.
Because journaling held me accountable every day and ensured I focused on completing my most important tasks even when they were ugly ones.
My mission in the last 6 months of the journal that I have written down every single day for the last six months is: Financially free by 33. (My definition is - £3k monthly income from passive income so that if I am working then it is my choice and the world is very much my oyster).
At the time of writing, I am 26 so I still have a fair few years to go.
In the last 6 months, I have been promoted twice in my role at work.
First, to a Sales Manager, a move that has allowed me to grow massively not only from a work skill set perspective, but it has developed me as a person.
There are many things I have had to learn to be a manager that will no doubt be beneficial in other areas of my life.
For example, a good manager is highly dependable and consistent, they show up when they say they will and they act consistently with the messages and mindsets they are trying to instil in their team.
This very much feeds back into my consistent habits so the journal has helped me here to be the person I have needed to be to perform well in my role.
My performance in the role and the overall success of the company has been such that a new role opened up that I have recently just started.
The new role is European Sales Manager.
This brings me closer to my overall mission and my desire for freedom as I am required to travel across Europe and facilitate a European rollout.
Keeping that mission front of mind has shaped my decisions, micro and macro alike allowing me to carry on chipping away moving closer and closer not losing our friend Big Mo.
How did practising gratitude for 6 months change me?
Starting every morning by writing down at least one reason to smile and ending every day with the highlight of the day has retrained my perspective. It has forced me to look for the upside. Many of my daily highlights have been the lessons I have learnt from the hardest moments.
My daily reflections now sit there in my journal like a time capsule to the days gone past which I find really cool. It will make it much easier to write a memoir in 50 years!
Gratitude has been pivotal in shaping my perspective and allowing me to enjoy the journey. Without it I think I would have slipped into the mindset of 'I'll be happy when I' insert arbitrary goal. With it the end outcome is a nice to have but the real win is being able to enjoy the process.
I have 13 journals left to complete the mission and I couldn’t be more excited to embark on the journey.