To track or to not to track! I have had this question for a long time.
A lot of people do (quantified self) projects they track everything from their temperature to their bowel movements. With tools like Notion, Habtica and the numinous count of habit trackers out there. I think you should really stop and ask yourself, before jumping in,
Do you really need to track what you’re tracking?
In my opinion, the answer is yes but. It should be done only if you have a clear goal in mind of why are you tracking whatever you’re tracking.
Why would you track?
For me, it’s usually one of two things; gaining the “Don’t break the streak” effect. And that’s usually with habits. Seeing how much you’ve already accomplished gives you some sort of pressure to not break the streak.
Now, you gotta be careful when using tracking for that reason. As it might pressure you into continuing to do things that don’t resonate with you anymore. Just to keep the streak going.
So, if you are the kind of person that gets motivated seeing a streak and knows when to stop, then absolutely yeah. Go for it.
The other, and in my opinion more important reason is trying to gain insight or find some correlation (maybe even causation) between the stuff you’re tracking. Trying to answer simple, or sometimes complicated questions.
- Am I happier when I sleep 7 hours? Instead of say 8?
- Do I get more headaches when I consume more caffeine?
- Do I sleep better on the days I exercise?
- Does that activity make me happier?
Sure that’s not an easy task to accomplish as the equation here has too many variables. And it requires knowing some basics of scientific research
Yet if you do it right, the results here are very rewarding. And it could vary from (taking a decision to quit your job and career shift or just confirming with the data what you already thought you knew about yourself, which I still consider a win.
Another third reason, which could be considered a sub of the previous one, is tracking for health reasons like tracking allergy episodes vs what I ate in a day.
You might have other reasons for tracking I’d love to hear about them.
But, If you don’t know why you’re collecting this data about yourself and you don’t actively plan on revisiting it or using it later in time then, I don’t really see a point for absentmindedly collecting them in the first place.
Notion Tracking Template
That being said, If you DO KNOW why you wanna track your life then I have something for you.
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Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions.