View profile

🧠 Proof of Learning 08: Forever decisions, habit tracking, and 4.5 year olds

Hello. I'm still alive. I've been playing around with HEY this week, a new email provider launched by
🧠 Proof of Learning 08: Forever decisions, habit tracking, and 4.5 year olds
By Jamie Sutton • Issue #8 • View online
Hello. I’m still alive.
I’ve been playing around with HEY this week, a new email provider launched by the Basecamp team. Here’s a (long) video of one of the founders showing off some of the cooler features. Let me know if you need an invite—I’ve got 2 left.
Here’s what I’ve thought about this past week:

💭 On my mind
  • 📊 Easy habit tracking. I’ve been using Ultraworking’s Lights Spreadsheet to track my habits for the past few months since returning from traveling. Highly recommend. I find I never use habit tracking apps on my phone but I check this one all the time, as long as I remember to pin the tab.
  • 🔒 Forever decisions. We form personal preferences quickly and rarely revisit whether we still believe them to be true. As a result, choices made in our past slowly become part of our identity. Here’s why you might have brainwashed yourself into thinking you’re introverted, or bad at math.
  • 🍓 Reading for recipes. Books don’t solve problems, they expose you potential solutions. Put another way, you can find new recipes through reading, but you’ll starve if you don’t close your book (or tabs) and start cooking. Read to discover new ideas worth practicing, then practice them. Without practice, there is nothing separating good ideas from fictional stories.
  • 🧠 A better flash card website. I’ve been using Memrise in place of Anki lately. Memrise prompts you to add an image or short description to each word or term you’re trying to memorize. It’s still early, but this extra step seems to result in quicker memorization.
  • 👶 When someone asks our age… As children, when someone asked our age, we might have said, “I’m four,” and added, with great solemnity, “and a half.” We didn’t want anyone to think we were only four. We had traveled so far in those few months, but then again we were modest enough to sense that the huge dignity of turning five was still quite far away. In other words, as children, we were hugely conscious of the rapidity and intensity of human development and wanted clearly to signal to others and ourselves what dramatic metamorphoses we might undergo in the course of our ordinary days and nights. (Taken from “On Confidence”, a book I’ll talk about below.)
📚 Book of the week
  • On Confidence by The School of Life. The School of Life is a project founded by philosopher Alain de Botton (who had the best Twitter feed before starting this project) offering advice on life issues. Books from The School of Life have been hit or miss for me, but ‘On Confidence’ is great. It’s only 50 pages long and it’s engaging enough to read in one sitting. It’s not self-help, and it’s closer to abstract than actionable, but it was an enjoyable hour spent.
  • Follow-up: Rewriting the Rules by Meg Barker. Last week I expressed how much I was enjoying the first few chapters of this book on how we think about relationships (and ourselves). I’ve since finished this book and would still recommend reading it for the first few chapters. There are a couple more good ones but overall this book is a little on the longer side. I skimmed over a lot of the extended discussion about gender and having productive arguments (so don’t try me 😡).
👋 See you next Tuesday!
Thanks for reading. Here’s a quote about being more mindful of death, from the book “On Confidence”, mentioned above:
We need regular, forceful encounters with reminders that there is something else we should be far more frightened of than embarrassment around holding someone’s hand or a bit of trouble as we change the subject of our university degree.
Did you enjoy this issue?
Jamie Sutton

Bite-sized ideas for curious minds, every Tuesday.

If you don't want these updates anymore, please unsubscribe here.
If you were forwarded this newsletter and you like it, you can subscribe here.
Powered by Revue