Quick Logging Input/Output

A simple notation to log your daily productiviy.

Few days back Christian Oliver shared in our slack channel this photo with his new motto (translated):

The idea is to create, to add value. Actions affect reality more than knowledge.

While I don’t completly agree with the last part — a constant in our friendship — I really liked the simplification of the concept.

For the part few days I’ve been playing with it in my daily Day One journals. Recently I hit what feels to me as a stable nomenclature:


As you can probably guess, yesterday was not a productive day. Of course, without context this can be misleading: if I spent the whole afternoon finally reading about regex, I would argue the input was high, but it was valuable input. Sadly, this was not the case and by glancing at the journal entry you would be able to see it.

I think the main reason the little end of document tag is working for me — it makes me want to add context to the values, without having to make a sentence out of the it.

A productive day can have many shapes and forms, and I sometimes struggle to log this in a short manner — by simply skipping writing about it.

The Formula

In my mind both attributes are in a scale of 10, and a perfect day would be i10/o10. In reality input and output have an inverse relation — since both consume the same resource of time — and the challenge is to balance them while also pushing both up.

Whatever your mental model and nomenclature, I strongly recommend evaluating your consumption/production everyday. Before long you may start to notice some patterns, or even better: you will start to competing with yourself and work towards not breaking the productivity chain.

Thanks to Christian Oliver, Juan Andres Muñoz and @Mauricio for the help on the drafts of this post.