2021 Review


I set 23 goals at the start of the year, modified 5 of them, and met 12 for a success rate of 52%, just over half. I could be happier.

Looking back, a major part of the reason for a low success rate is that I just forgot about a lot of these goals. They were not high priority enough to stick out in my mind, and not well-integrated enough in my review system to come back to me.

The other reason is that the goals themselves were just bad. First, many are not phrased nearly quantitatively enough. Second, many of them were actually not all too important (earning an award for my thesis was just a tad too superficial, my thesis ended up getting bumped down on my list of priorities anyway in favor of the company I started with my partner). Learnings for next year.


  • ✅ = success
  • ❌ = failure
  • ➡️ = modification


  • 🍄 General
    • Move back to North America. ✅
    • Start following the GTD workflow. ✅
  • 🧠 Mind
    • 🧘 Mindfulness
      • Meditate daily. Try a (≥) week-long meditation retreat. ❌ I found that I much preferred the sauna to standard meditation, but then I moved and no longer had access to a sauna.
    • 👫 Relationships
      • Find a community of friends and professional acquaintances wherever we end up moving. Engage in local politics. ❌ I moved around a bit too often (Amsterdam -> SF -> NY) to really commit to a community
    • 🎓 Learning
      • Continue growing my SRS and second brain. ✅
      • Read 1 book a week. ✅
      • (Stretch) Read 100 books. ❌ (91/100) This was actually counterproductive. It made me read shorter books and, more fiction, and it made me take less thorough notes. I retained less of more.
      • Read through the works of Twain, Orwell, and the Stoics. ✅ I could have read one more book of essays by Twain, and a few more chapters of Epictetus but, honestly, I've had my fill
      • Read ≥5 non-English books (5/5). ✅
      • Italian to B2; German to B1 ➡️ Get Portuguese to A2 ✅
  • 🫀 Body
    • 🏊 Movement
      • Continue daily mobility and flexibility exercises. Reach at least 6 months without injury. ✅
      • Experiment with breathing techniques (Wim Hof, Buteyko, etc.) and find one that works for the daily meditation practice. ❌
      • Start jump-roping daily (or do some other cardio). ❌
      • Bring my resting heart-rate down below 70. ✅Turns out my resting heart-rate wasn't actually above 70 to begin with (it's around 60), still...
    • 🥗 Consumption
      • Do a prolonged fast every 3 months. Start with 2 days and work up to a 5-day fast (or with a fasting mimicking diet). ❌ Did two fasts of three days
      • Write about the environmental and health consequences of my eating patterns. Adjust accordingly. ❌
  • 🏭 Output
    • 🎓 Masters
      • Get a ≥9.0 (out of 10.0) on my thesis. ❌ (8.5)
      • Get an award ➡️ Why would I care about getting an award? ✅
    • 📬 Blog
      • Write weekly ✅
      • Publish one article a week ❌
      • Develop a course (likely about workflows for academic research) for passive income. ❌
    • 💟 Health Curious
      • Achieve consistent growth with Health Curious. ➡️ Find a launching clinic ✅
      • Get into YC S2021. ❌


Reviews/3 Quarterly Review/2021-Q3

  • 📕 Reading: At least 21 more books; ❌
    • The Discourses by Epictetus, 10 more books by Twain, 2 by Robert Green, and Pinocchio. ❌
  • ✍️ Writing: 29 more articles. Finish up at least two of the series I have started. ❌
  • 📊 Organization: Migrate from Notion to Logseq. ➡️ And then, full circle, back from Logseq to Obsidian ✅
  • 🗣 Language-learning: 1,500 words in German. ➡️ 750 words of German & 750 of Portuguese ✅
  • 🫀 Exercise & Injury:
    • Average three 7-minute workouts, 30 minutes of mobility a day. ❌ I kept this up for 2/3 months, then I realized how boring and repetitive it was and decided to let up to avoid going crazy
    • 5,000 steps ✅