Blue Zones is a project of Dan Buettner’s Quest Network, Inc that studies the regions of the world where people commonly live active lives past the age of 100 years. Scientists and demographers have classified these longevity hot-spots by their inhabitant’s uncanny ability to live longer, on average, than anyone else in the world. […]
Four Blue Zones have been discovered so far:
* Sardinia, Italy: One team of demographers found a hot spot of longevity in mountain villages where men reach the age of 100 years at an amazing rate.
* The islands of Okinawa, Japan: Another team examined a group that is among the longest lived on Earth.
* Loma Linda, California: Researchers studied a group of Seventh-day Adventists who rank among America’s longevity all-stars. Residents of these three places produce a high rate of centenarians, suffer a fraction of the diseases that commonly kill people in other parts of the developed world, and enjoy more healthy years of life. 
* Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica: The Nicoya Peninsula was the subject of research on a Quest Network expedition which began on January 29th, 2007.
The people inhabiting Blue Zones share common lifestyle characteristics that contribute to their longevity. Among the lifestyle characteristics shared among the Okinawa, Sardinia, and Loma Linda Blue Zones are the following:
* Family – Family is put ahead of other concerns.
* No Smoking – Centenarians do not typically smoke.
* Plant-Based Diet – The majority of food consumed is derived from plants.
* Constant Moderate Physical Activity – Moderate physical activity is an inseparable part of life.
* Social Engagement – People of all ages are socially active and integrated into their communities.
* Legumes – Legumes are commonly consumed.
Allen, Morgenstern, and Ferriss are a nicely compatible family unit: David Allen is the practical dad who reminds you not to overcomplicate things; just get the job done. Julie Morgenstern is the encouraging mom who, while hugging you, says, “It’ll be all right; you just need to focus on what’s important here.” And Tim Ferriss is the upstart kid who cries, “Think outside the box, man!” So in retrospect, it makes sense that I found it easier to cherry-pick elements from each and stitch together my own wearable cloak of efficiency. Now, I know that David Allen is the head vampire of productivity, but if you only have the fortitude to read a single book, I’m gonna throw my lithe frame behind The 4-Hour Workweek. Ferriss lays out a series of nimble yet perfectly legal cons to help you break out of the corporate Bastille—and work from the actual Bastille, if you want. That sly creativity best fits the rogue nature of the freelancer.
I recently read Four Hour Work Week, expecting to write a scathing review of it. But I’m actually getting a lot of mileage out of it, applying it to The Swift Fox. But I’m still a long way from quitting my day job, and I haven’t hired a personal assistant yet.
1. Keep a schedule
2. Eat light in the evening
3. Have things you WANT to do during the day
4. Plan your day
5. Drink water before bed and upon waking
7. Have some private time in the morning
I was looking for something else in the 43 Folders archives, and came across this gem of an article:
My theory is that the secret code for most self-improvement systems-from Getting Things Done through Biofeedback and the Atkins diet-is not hard to break; any idea that helps you to become more self-aware can usually help you to reach a goal or affect a favorable solution. That’s pretty much the entire bag of doughnuts right there.
Self-improvement juju works not because of magic beans or the stones in your soup pot; it works because a smart ‘system’ can become a satisfying cipher for framing a problem and making yourself think about solutions in an ordered way. Systems help you minimize certain kinds of feedback while amplifying others.