Discoveries of 2018: Introduction

Hey there -

This intro and upcoming posts with my awestruck discoveries might inspire you to revisit your past discoveries and start tracking them somehow.

I started a note “018 Discoveries” on my phone after a shocking discovery about the right way to use a foil paper. This one and a prior awestruck discovery - how a maple tree blossoms - triggered me to start capturing discoveries that amaze me.

Overall I captured 60+ discoveries in the following categories: 1/nature 2/religion 3/philosophy 4/neuroscience 5/psychology 6/food 7/people 8/miscellaneous 9/music 10/books 11/movies

There is a Chinese saying: “a powerful memory cannot compare with pale ink”. If I used just my memory and a note on the iPhone I would have much less to remember. So often I didn’t even think to take a note on the list of discoveries when I was in awe.

What else I used to collect more discoveries in the process of the annual review:

(1) Weekly learnings. I built a habit of diligent weekly reviews over last three years. I review the Logbook journal (A5 notebook) usually on Sunday and highlight the most important progress. I capture learnings in a separate notebook in the process. Weekly reviews are quick, easy and super helpful because I take notes of what happened in work and life in the Logbook journal at the end of each day. It is hard to do it daily, but I make it easier as I tracked in the Logbook and notes from the main journal during the day.


In 2018 I managed to capture learnings for 39 out of 52 reviewed weeks. This is the last and the hardest part of the weekly review. As for the Logbook journal, I didn’t miss a day in 2018, but at least 10% of the 365 days I filled in retrospectively. Sometimes four days in a row, which is the worst way to do it. My learning: however hard it seems to capture day’s events and progress at the end of the day, it is always far better to do that at the end of each day. Memories fade away during night sleep.

(2) Notes on the fly that I take during chats with e.s.b., friends in real-time and in the trips in the pocket size notebook. Spending time on revisiting year’s discoveries helped me to retrigger the feeling of awe for several hours. Also, it’s evidence for inner critic and melancholic for reframing ‘018 as a colorful, juicy and joyous year despite that it was even darker than ever.

This is an intro to the upcoming blog post by categories. Coming in January/February ‘019.

Meanwhile you can check out this:

— Niki  👊💥

P.S. Here’s an investigation of the Chinese quote that I learned from a friend.