Archilochus: “We don’t rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.”
First a confession. I am taking today’s Archilochus quote above from a tweet from James Clear, author of Atomic Habits. And I found the Clear quote in an otherwise unrelated video from Wheezy Waiter.
But I find the Clear version “You go not rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems” to be very true. But what are some examples of getting new habits? Let’s check in with Test Lab host Jazmine Reed-Clark at The Financial Diet.
Okay, first of all, my usual The Financial Diet disclaimer. Some of thier advice is not what I would recommend. Second, and Jazmine does that thing at the end of the video that seems to be on every TDF video, we have the annoying, “but we are so privileged” disclaimer. (Why is Jasmine a slightly overweight black woman living in a modest house in Dallas so privileged, you may ask? She has a husband who is willing to occasionally walk thier dog. seriously.)
This is not the case of Caitlin Flanagan writing about the difficulties of raising children with a staff that would not be out of place in Downton Abbey. (I have to review To Hell with All That: Loving and Loathing Our Inner Housewife someday.). No, her privilege is she does not live alone, in a van, down by the river.
Okay, I am getting off task.
Why do I always allow TDF’s performative activism to trigger me? Not very stoic. Anyway, both she and Craig make some very good points in their respective videos (Even though I said Craig’s video was off topic seemingly about diet. In reality, it is about habits.)
First Jasmine’s The habits of billionaires are as follows.
AN EARLY START
RECALL YOUR DREAMS
MAKE YOUR BED
DRINK A TALL GLASS OF WATER AND TAKE VITAMINS/PROBIOTICS
MEDITATION FOR 20 MINUTES AND 2 MINUTES OF MOVEMENT
HAVE A COLD SHOWER
JOURNALING ( TO-DO LIST, TO-FEEL LIST, TO-BE LIST)
READING FOR 30 MINUTES
Jasmine follows this list pretty much to the “T” only replacing a breathing exercise instead of meditation and also adding a tea ceremony. (Perhaps she was reading the Japanese billionaire list?)
So how did it go? Well, my complaint about these morning routines I documented earlier is that you have to get up at least three hours earlier to fit all the tasks in. Jasmine runs into this buzz saw right away. I still think billionaires have staff (Certainly someone to walk the hounds) so by default they have more free time for such activities. I know I am skating close to the privileged complaint I highlighted above, but with billionaires, there is room for a reality check.
First, let me say Jasmine was a delight to watch and a really excellent sport. She liked the cold showers. She fails right away by drinking some coffee because it is freakin five in the morning. A woman after my own heart.
Her takeaways were that a little bit of movement was good, as was the to do/feel/be lists which she shared and knocked out of the park. As well as making her bed first thing in the morning (I really ought to do that).
She noted that time was a valuable commodity (More so than money) and that the 120 minute morning routine really brought this home for her. She also wants to be more intentional with her nighttime routine and get her reading in at that time like the good lord intended.
So what is your take on the billionaire’s routine?
Well, the billionaire’s routine certainly won’t make you a billionaire. Like Jasmine, I am happy to experiment with it and take some habits that I may then put into my life. Per the individual items?
AN EARLY START: I work second shift, which means I am off work at 1am. Realistically, this is a problem. Though I am perfectly happy to wake up early and make up sleep with a siesta in the early afternoon. I suffer from insomnia so sometime I do find myself up at 5am. No issues with at least making it productive.
RECALL YOUR DREAMS; I have issues remembering my dreams more than a minute after I wake up. This is actually frustrating occasionally when I can recall having a vivid dream but can no longer recall exactly what it was.
MAKE YOUR BED: Yes, I need to do this when I wake up. I have no excuses.
DRINK A TALL GLASS OF WATER AND TAKE VITAMINS/PROBIOTICS; I take a multivitamin a few times a week (When I remember) It wouldn’t kill me to do this daily.
MEDITATION FOR 20 MINUTES AND 2 MINUTES OF MOVEMENT: If I mediate in the morning, I will go right back to sleep. Meditation always puts me to sleep. Maybe that is why Jasmine substituted intense breathing exercises. Meditation is my go to before my siesta.
HAVE A COLD SHOWER: I liked this for a couple of weeks. It does wake one up.
JOURNALING ( TO-DO LIST, TO-FEEL LIST, TO-BE LIST): Of course, what you are reading here is my version of journaling. I have a running to do list. A to feel list and a to be list sound like good ideas I should try.
READING FOR 30 MINUTES: See Meditating above. That is a nightly routine.
This is going to require a part two isn’t it?
Yeah, I have not even touched on the Wheezy Waiter video above, which is much deeper than at first appears. So watch this space for a follow up. If I don’t die or something. Gotta keep it stoic.