By day I work at Coda, and run our Sales and Customer Success team. By night...well, like most people, I end up watching a lot of Netflix. Especially these days. (
Note: this was written during a global pandemic
I found myself the other day bemoaning how little I wrote creatively anymore - something I really enjoyed doing when I was younger. Instead of showing you some of my fiction, I
tell you about all the subplots in
, or the wondrous whimsy of
(both penned by
- did you know that?). We're in
, so there's just oh so much content to watch.
The Parent Angle
Also, I'm a Dad. (Does one capitalize that? IDK TBH ← ugh, acronyms, the bane of good writing, and the product of our social media age.) My daughter is my real "hobby" (though I hesitate to use that word since, y'know.) That means that when I'm not working, I'm often procuring, preparing, or cleaning up from meals with her; reading to, playing with, or bathing her; or discussing various milestones, goals, tribulations associated with raising a human being in 2020. (Especially now, amirite?)
And the thing is, I
to have other hobbies. I don't want to just be a Dad who works and parents - because passions, hobbies, creative outlets are what make a complete person, and I definitely want to model that behavior for my daughter. Doing so also helps me be a more complete person, so when I'm fulfilled I can be my whole self when I sit down to play legos with her, or put on a costume and invent a new game with her, instead of thinking about something else I could be doing - whether it's work, or something for myself.
Enter the Coda doc
When I recently took stock in my habits, it occurred to me that there must be a way to goad myself into writing more, and doing less fulfilling activities like watching TV. And that's where Coda came in. I took a cue from Nathan's
, and customized it for myself. And now, whenever I am sitting down to binge the latest hit, I clock in to my little "Write vs. Watch" tracker, which keeps me honest as to which activity I'm doing more of.
It's a simple doc. Pick two things you do a lot of, one of which you want to do more than the other, and write them in the
. You can add additional things you want to track, if you're
into the quantified self. For me, this is as OCD as it gets.
The reason I wanted the doc to be this simple was to ensure that it actually got used. I knew myself - if I had opted for a bunch of categories and different things to track, I'd end up abandoning the thing after a few weeks. Instead, just clocking in and out for only two activities ensure I'll stay fairly focused on utilizing the doc.
Once you've decided on your categories, pick your
(you can add others if you're not in the US in the
Click the button for the requisite activity when you're doing it,
. On your phone, you can swipe left to click the button - just like a "real" app.
Add entries manually when you invariably forget that you just binged the entire "Watchmen" series in the
Check out your progress in the
. A canvas conditional formula will congratulate or chide you, depending on your habits.
And how has the doc been working? Well, in my own version, I've this year logged over 20 hours writing, and only 17 watching. (And if I had added 'Reading' as a category, that would be the leader of the bunch.)
I hope this doc is helpful!
Umm, what's Coda?
is a new kind of document that keeps all your text, tables, and data in one place so everything you need to get the job done stays together. See examples of how people use Coda in our
Psst, we're hiring in San Francisco, Mountain View and Seattle, too!