January Pomodoro ReflectionFebruary 01, 2020 - 5 min read 🍵🍵🍵
Having reflections allow me to measure how much I’ve done and what I’ve accomplished to achieve my goals. It helps me stay accountable in my journey in completing my Udemy courses I have set out and gaining the skills to be a well-rounded developer.
A great start to the year as this month is the most Pomodoro’s I’ve ever completed. I completed the MERN application which can be found here and now moved over to an advanced CSS course to increase my CSS skills to create beautiful frontend websites.
There were a couple of reasons why I think I had such a high Pomodoro count this month. I think I’ve narrowed it down to 5 reasons:
1. Completion of the Udemy course 💪
Another small victory, I learned how a full stack application is made with Express, React and MongoDB. Created the ability to store data user, hashing passwords using bcrypt.js, dealing with JWT tokens to keep users logged in and many more.
My certification from Udemy!
2. Coffee☕ - artificially enhancing concentration
I was never a coffee drinker. The number of times I’ve had coffee during my 5-year undergrad was probably about 6 times. Coffee would do more harm than good as it made my stomach hurt and often times made me sleepy.
However, this all changed when my girlfriend brewed me Vietnamese coffee. I was expecting the usual side effects I previously had, but the caffeine from this coffee actually worked. I never felt so alive! I immediately knew that this type of coffee was going to be key in helping me concentrate. I would have this sparingly when I felt a little tired and it definitely did the trick
3. Constant dopamine loop ♾- from seeing immediate feedback with CSS (Advanced CSS course)
The immediate feeling of satisfaction when you see your code building out something live makes it very fun and also pretty addicting. I noticed I was a lot more involved mentally in doing this course. At the same time, I’ve also been working on building out my portfolio which helped me concentrate for longer periods of time because I was working on a personal project.
4. Implementation of No Zero Day 🚫 - No day goes to waste
The idea is that no day will go free from a Pomodoro. I’m using this technique I found from a reddit post and applying it to my personal process. Usually, when I feel like having an off day or not feeling like doing anything, I apply this rule and end up doing more than just 1 Pomodoro. It keeps me motivated to keep going which has contributed to increasing my overall Pomodoro count.
5. Exercise 👟
I talked about running before back in 2018 where I started to track my previous summer. The summer of 2019 had running out of the equation because of my health issue. I’ve been feeling much better lately and started to jog this month, slowly introducing it to my routine.
Sleep hygene 😴
It’s important to keep a routine every day and go to bed and wake up at the same time. However, I tend to play a lot of games at night to decompress which leads me to sleeping in a little late.
I had a sleep study done 3 months ago; I’ve been feeling very tired the last few months which is expected as part of recovering. However, I constantly wake up in the middle of the night which has been giving me sleeping issues. I consulted a medical professional to discuss any abnormalities in my sleep pattern and the results show that it might just be internal stress and not sleep apnea.
In addition, my low quality of sleep tends to add a never ending cycle of quick naps and leaving myself wide awake at night. Perhaps this is due to the stress from my health and many other factors including the process of changing career paths and how it’s been lagging behind.
Atomic habits has taught me to make my environments very distinct when it comes to productivity and leisure. Unfortunately, my gaming, productivity and resting place is all in my bedroom. I cannot dedicate any other spaces to certain activities which definitely causes sleep issues. I need to find a solution somehow.
Energy and Stress management
I started to jog this month to gain more energy physically as well as increasing my mental energy. Stress management is being dealt with meditation. I’ve incorparated 5 minutes of meditation into my day but I’ve only completed about 11 days out of the 31 this month. I’ve been slacking on trying to find just 5 minutes of my time to meditate. I will start putting in calendar events and block time.
Reduce gaps inbetween Pomodoro’s
I’ve been doing Pomodoro’s as I feel like it. I do 25 minute and then take a break for more than 5 minutes that is allocated. I noticed my calendar having gaps and I tend to space out my Pomodoro’s over a longer period than I would like. Partly due to the fact that I either need to cook food or I need a bit more time to start up again.
I found that doing Pomodoro’s early in the morning is my optimal time to do work, but I’m either dead tired when I wake up or too cold to get up. I need to work on this somehow and it definitely starts with sleep.