About eight years ago I found out I was going to start my first senior job role, as an account director in a global PR agency. I had just read a 'self help' book (as my wife calls them) called Getting Things Done. The now cult text gave me inspiration to work more efficiently by applying life hacks (or rules to get more out of yourself) such as the three inbox rule, one list rule, two minute action rule, and so on and so on. I still live by those same rules now.
Since then I have read endless books of a similar nature, I devour blogs and twitter feeds about lifehacking, I have more recently been using phone apps to track my running performance, sleep patterns and I scrutinise any data I can find about myself so that I can improve how I do things. Think Nike Fuelband.
My colleague Stephen Davies this week pointed out to me that this behaviour has a name, and its own movement. It's called Quantified Self (also known as #selftracking). He sent me some articles that, when I read them, seemed to describe my life over recent years. I discovered there are even London Meetups around the Quantified Self movement.
And if you're in the UK, go join the London Meetup group for Quantified Self.
There's no shortage of gadgetry or apps that are nudging this along. What I think we'll begin to see a lot more of is the application of this big data in marketing and consumer insights.