Three Formulas

The formula for failure:

Failure = a few errors in judgment × repeated every day

The formula for personal success:

Success = a few simple disciplines × practiced every day

The formula for building a big and successful community

Successful community = Group of People × doing few simple Tasks × over consistent Time

What are the few simple tasks in a capoeira community? Training, playing in the roda, traveling to events.

The question is not whether the formula for success will work, but rather whether the person will work the formula

Jim Rohn

Further reading

Monthly review and last 30 days of the year

There is one month left in the year. Most people are ready to coast to the finish line, but one good month can make the whole year feel like a success. What can you do in the next 30 days to build momentum and finish the year on a high note?



I see there are two ways to understand identities. One level is where you associate your self with a work, school, group, or lineage. Another level where you associate yourself with habits you do day-to-day.


Digital Immune System

Let’s talk again about tuning your own radio:

We are almost like antennas, and around us all there are thousands of vibrations and thoughts which enter our mind. When you are driving your car, all the radio stations, and their waves are hitting your car, your antenna outside. But it’s the station you put on the radio that blocks off the rest of them and lets one come in. Same thing with your mind. All around you there are vibrations of success and failure, health and sickness, positive and negative. We need to learn how to tune our “radio station”, to choose a “music” in our lives.

Timor Klinghofer

I touched this topic a little bit in my essay on journaling. But if journaling is my active defense, digital detox is my immune system.

My digital immune system

  • No news sites and podcast on current affairs. Don’t worry, the really important news will find their way to you.
  • No social media, no feeds. If you are a digital creator, use “write-only” mode, post your stuff, reply to meaningful feedback, close it, and forget about it.
  • Don’t waste your time mindlessly in group chats. Don’t argue with anyone on the internet. It’s useless.
  • No video sites, no YouTube, or teach their algorithms to show you something that motivates you and teaches you. Unsubscribe from informational, news, leisure channels. Dislike them and click “Don’t recommend this to me”. Like and subscribe to the content that drives you, or makes you smarter.
  • No porn for stress relief or a quick dopamine fix. Keep your dopamine levels healthy. Save that energy for real relationships and really important things in your life.
  • Delete them all from the history of your browser and autosuggestions. Out of sight, out of mind.
  • Disable all notifications, all sounds, and unread badges on your messengers and other apps, which are built specifically to get you hooked. To make sure you keep checking that app.
  • Clean up your environment physically and virtually. Remove all distractions from the sight. Stuff and apps that draw your attention. Less is more.
  • Consciously check messages from people that you care about. Meaningfully write and chat with them. Show appreciation.

It’s impossible

No. It is possible.

I’m a digital content creator myself. I worked in the media and was a news editor for more than 10 years. My work involves people, many times meeting them offline, and I interact with dozens of people personally every day. I also work in digital marketing, and I have to use dozens of apps to post videos and other content everyday.

Not following the current news and socializing meaninglessly online is not about being ignorant, arrogant, or just a heartless bastard. On the opposite, it’s about radical responsibility.

There is a lot of injustice in the world. The daily doomscrolling1 won’t make you more responsible, and for sure won’t make victims’ lives better. I have friends and some distant family members who fought and died in some recent wars around the globe. They didn’t care if I followed every daily madness in the world.

If you want to help – do something. It can be something small, but meaningful to you.

Act mindfully.
Tweak your radio.
Improve your digital immune system.

Further reading
  • I’ve just learned about this book “Digital Minimalism: Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World” by Cal Newport

1. Doomscrolling or doomsurfing is the act of spending an excessive amount of time reading large quantities of negative news online.


(Don’t) get an alarm clock

Before writing this post, I went to Google to quickly check if there is anyone who wrote about this before, and guess what: the first result is a video “Buy An Alarm Clock. It Will Change Your Life”. Anyway, I’m going to write my own story and experience with an alarm clock.


Cold shower

I’m a fan of cold showers.

Many research shows (links below), that lowering the water temperature below 15°C (60°F) and having a shower has many benefits for your health:

  • Improve mental health and boost immunity
  • Increase metabolism
  • Improve circulation and helps post-workout recovery
  • Reduce inflammation and prevent muscle soreness
  • Relieve localized pain
  • Combat symptoms of depression

How I quit drinking (a few times)

If quitting smoking for me was almost unintentionally, overcoming alcohol addiction was a voluntary and conscious choice. I tried twice and both times were successful (a joke intended).


How I quit smoking

I consider my self lucky because I tried a lot of things early in life. Good stuff and bad stuff. I started living abroad without my parents from age 10, and somehow I believe it was one of the best parental decisions. That “independence”1 taught me a lot. There were lot of fails, wild teen’s spirit, but some good moments too.


Good Habits, Bad Habits

Humans are creatures of habit. The research shows ~45% of our daily activity are habitual, performed automatically without much thought. Or as Fyodor Dostoyevsky puts it: “It seems, in fact, as though the second half of a person’s life is made up of nothing but the habits they accumulated during the first half.”


Budgeting vs Expense Tracking

Another daily habit I have been working for couple of years now is budgeting. Not the expense tracking, but budgeting.

Expense tracking is simply recording all of your spendings: writing down them everyday, going through all your accounts and receipts, etc…

It may sound boring, and you might say: “C’mon, Alex, now I should remember and write down every penny I spent?”. And probably most people don’t do it regularly, or only when times are tough. But this is a good first step to raising awareness about your finances and spendings. You can’t manage what you can’t measure. Knowing the truth about your current situation makes you closer to the financial freedom.

But this is only the first step. The next level is budgeting.