I finished my first two-week period of Elastic Habits, and so far it’s going really well. My score was 129 out of a range of 0 to (I think) 366 (for my 14-day schedule). The main goal is not to miss more than one day on any habit, and so far I haven’t missed any.
My bedtime trended later as the week went on, but I was still able to get to bed in time for 8 hours, at least in principle. In practice I’m learning how my mornings go, and I’m finding it’s hard to sleep in unless I’m extremely tired, which I shouldn’t be on my new schedule, so there’s only so late I can push my bedtime.
Last week’s cleaning theme was the bathroom. I got through about a third of all the cleaning it needs, which was pretty good for me.
I started listening to some books on personal finances. I picked them up in a Humble Book Bundle. They’re all published by Wiley. My goal was to fill in any gaps in my knowledge and help me plan. All three of the books from last week sounded very sensible, so I’ll go back and work through them in detail as I address my finances.
Personal Finance in Your 20s & 30s for Dummies by Eric Tyson covers what I presume are all the basic topics in a clear, well-organized, and approachable manner, so I felt it was a good introduction for me. I didn’t know disability insurance existed, so that was one gap filled. There were others, but that one stood out.
Making Money Simple by Peter Lazaroff makes money simple by (1) reducing issues to their essentials, (2) giving you worksheets to guide your decisions, (3) recommending that you automate as much of your finances as possible, and (4) recommending that you consult a financial advisor for the parts that aren’t simple.
Morningstar’s 30-Minute Money Solutions by Christine Benz was helpfully worksheet oriented like Lazaroff, but unlike Lazaroff, it kept money complicated. Benz tended to assume a lot of prior knowledge. But the book still seemed worth understanding, so I’d like to acquire that prior knowledge.
I finished setting up my accounts in Quicken. I’m not sure I should keep my retirement accounts there, since these books warned against paying too much attention to the fluctuations of your long-term investments, but I’ll decide later. In any case, the next step is to set up an updated budget in the software.
I’m extending my financial project to next month. These financial books have altered my agenda quite a bit, and it’ll clearly take more than a week or two to address all the issues.
I got a call from my good friend Tim, who I hadn’t spoken to in months. Our long silence wasn’t on purpose—we just hadn’t been organized enough to stay in touch. What finally did it was that I accidentally invited him to sign up for the Citizen app, which I was setting up just to try. He was calling both to catch up and to ask questions about the app. So now we have open plans to get together sometime when the weather’s better.