Here are my 12 favourite life problems / intentions. What are yours?

By Kristian Borglund

September 12, 2020

Life design  

► In life, there are a number of questions in the back of the head that won't leave you alone. Here's my top 12 list. Yours probably will have some similarities, but mostly it will look different. 

I first learned about the concept of writing down the "12 favourite problems" in life a couple of years ago, as I attended the online-course "Building a Second Brain" by knowledge-management expert Tiago Forte.

In his course, he talks about "favourite problems", and he asks his students to write them down. I prefer to frame them as favourite problems, intentions and aims.

A simplified version of the exercise goes like this:

  • What questions don't ever seem to go away for you?
  • What have you always pursued?
  • What are the problems that touch something deep within you?

The list may stay pretty much the same year after year. The nature of the problems / intentions / aims are that you won't be "done" with them. However, it's likely you want to refine them every six months or so, as you become more clear about them. I've updated my list a few times. This one is the September 2020 version.

1. Ikigai business

How can I add way more value to others and myself through products, services and marketing?

2. Simplifying and structuring content creation

How can I simplify the process of creating engaging, exciting and effective content for myself and clients – including every part of the creating process from ideation development to writing?

3. Making the most of life

How can I make the most of the years until I die? The most of this decade? This year? This month? What does "make the most of my life" even mean?

4. Focus

How can I stay on track with the things I decide to do, and stop being seduced by shiny objects?

5. Social joy

How can I get out of my destructive pattern of self-isolating and being too much in my head, and enjoy the "the real world" more – developing, nurture and breathe more joy into my family life, friendships and activities?

6. Input quality

How can I raise signal-to-noice ratio of the media, books, articles etc I consume?

7. Being a dad

How can I be the best dad I can be for my daughter?

8. Yes attitude | Growth mindset

How can I develop a ”YES I can / I can learn this” attitude, let go of self-doubt, overthinking and self-criticism, so that more great things can happen in my life?

9. Connection

How can I align with the "higher" part of myself (consciousness), and stay connected during more hours of each day, and more days during each week?

10. Workflow clarity

How can I clarify and master the parts of my knowledge management system and work processes?

11. Vitality

How can I make it so that I sleep well, stay energized throughout the day and get it better shape for each year?

12. Interests soil

How can I put my growing interests for philosophy, psychology, society trends, mental models, personality differences, systems thinking in good soil? What are the right contexts for those interests?

About the author

Kristian Borglund believes in breaking things down and add some chaos to achieve next-level clarity. He lives in Stockholm, Sweden.


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