On Beauty and Implementation

Fragments from imaginary dialogues

“One of the many facets of my Life-Art [<link; medium read] is trying to put an aesthetic touch on everything I do.”

“Does it serve a practical purpose?”

Every instance of Beauty can serve a practical purpose if you’re receptive to it.

But what I had in mind is something more particular.

Remember James Clear’s second rule of habit creation?”

“Make it attractive.”

“That one. The important question is,

How can you make it attractive?

One way is through the power of Beauty.

Make it beautiful.

Making something beautiful makes you more likely to engage in it.”

“Can you give an example?”

“Let’s take Deep Work, since we’ve talked about recently [<link; medium read].

In the context of Deep Work, my objective is
productivity maximization, and
perfect energy conservation.
To achieve this, how you optimize the work/rest oscillation is key.

We’ve talked before [<link; medium read] about the micro-oscillation and the macro-oscillation.

Micro-Oscillation unit: pomodoro – 25 minutes of deep-focus, 5-minute break
Macro-Oscillation unit: deep-work-block – 3 pomodoros, longer break

It looks great on paper, but I’d been struggling for a while with implementation.”

“What was the failure-point?

“The Macro-Oscillation.

Micro-Oscillation: I strictly respected the pomodoro. 
Macro-Oscillation: I often yielded to the temptation to do too many pomodoros in a row, which sapped my energy, which triggered a downward spiral of inefficiency and poor decision-making.”

“How did you solve this problem?”

When you struggle, it’s time to evolve a system.

I asked myself a macro-question:

What do you want the structure of your work-day to look like?

Then I sat down to answer it, in writing, with Simplicity and Beauty as guides.

The outcome is a pattern that looks like this:

30 30 30 15
30 30 30 30

“What am I looking at?”

“The bolded numbers represent pomodoros.
The un-bolded numbers represent breaks.

I do a deep-work-block, and take a 15 minute break.”

“Why 15 and not, say, 10?”

“It’s a littler aesthetic touch. 15 is 5 multiplied by 3.

Then I do another deep-work-block, and take a 30 minute break.

These form a cycle.

So if I were to extend it in time, it would look like this:

30 30 30 15
30 30 30 30
30 30 30 15
30 30 30 30

Or, more exactly, like this:

(25 + 5) (25 + 5) (25 + 5) 15
(25 + 5) (25 + 5) (25 + 5) 30
(25 + 5) (25 + 5) (25 + 5) 15
(25 + 5) (25 + 5) (25 + 5) 30

Four deep-work-blocks is 5 hours of deep-focused work, and 2.30 hours of rest in a beautifully balanced distribution.

Having this detailed aesthetic view has made implementing it a joy.”

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About Dani Trusca

Life-Artist, Thinker, Mover (Traceur)

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