‘Same Same, But Different’

Something you hear a lot out here in Thailand is the fairly comical statement, ‘Same Same, But Different’.

Want to order 2 iced americanos, but 1 needs extra ice (like we do every morning over here!)? Your order will likely involve a shared moment of understanding that you are, in fact, ordering the ‘same same, but different’.

I’ve been sharing with you all that over the past month here in Thailand I’ve quantifiably logged the best sleep to date I began sleep tracking with the Oura ring. And I’ve subjectively gotten the best sleep of my life.

I’ve been obsessively looking to unpack exactly what is at the source of it. I’ve shared with you about the addition of:



-Ocean Proximity

The more I think about it, I’m pretty convinced that:

All of these changes have worked to greatly improve my sleep largely in part because they are rooted in a ‘Same Same, But Different’ approach.

The very thing that I’ve spent most of my life fighting: routine, consistency, discipline, normalcy [SAMENESS]...is now giving me what I’ve always wanted:

-amazing RELIABLE sleep

-steady moods

-virtually no anxiety

-better health (particularly evident in my HRV/RHR)


-sense of peace

For example, I’ve been averaging between 7.5 hours-8 hours of sleep out here every night. One night I only got 5.5 hours. While I definitely wouldn’t suggest making a habit of this, my sleep efficiency scores were still pretty stellar and I felt remarkably better than I ever had in the past with such a detour.

Great sleep craves consistency [Same Same], but our psychology requires a bit of variety [But Different] - WITHOUT JUDGEMENT.

When you feed your sleep a consistent diet of ‘Same Same’, 7 days a week...you can take the occasional deviation in stride and not make yourself wrong about it. What is critical is accounting for our basic human need for variety and preplanning for it.

Here’s a look at my current ‘Same same, but different’ breakdown 👇:

Same Same [Fundamentals/MUSTS]:

Wake Time

Bed Time

Morning Ritual

Total Work Time

Heavy Mental Work Before Sunset

Heavy Movement Before Sunset

12k Step Goal

Clothing Choices (My Uniform!)

But Different [Variety/Spontaneity/Fun]:


Special Occasion Drink w/Dinner

New Physical Activity

New Genre of Book

A Massage Midday

Social Event


New Hobby

New Podcast

Crazy New Crop Top ;)

Basically working to create a life like this 👇:

During my many years of chronic sleep deprivation, I was living a life where the above triangle was flipped. Seeking ‘But Different’ and shirking ‘Same Same’; and/or judging myself when my attempts at consistency weren’t perfect. This last month on the beach has marked the first time that I’ve begun to really understand that the life I crave requires loads of discipline + a healthy serving of grace.

Essentials for Living a 'Same Same, But Different' Life:

  1. Establish Your Grounding “Same Same” / MUSTS: Brian Johnson’s Philosopher’s Notes (such a great resource for bite-sized wisdom!) sums it up well in his review of the book“Consistency of the Fundamentals”.
  2. [Might I Suggest] Same Same Wake Time/Bed Time, 7 Days A Week!: HUGE. Differences in sleep/wake timing between work and free days can result in the development of social jetlag (SJL). Of course, the ‘but different’ clause allows for some slight variation of around half an hour or the addition of power nap to provide flexibility, yet consistency.
  3. Create & Actually Maintain a Morning Routine: This book title might sound woo-woo, but if practiced it really lives up to its name: The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life (Before 8AM)

Gamify Consistency! If you have an iPhone, you can join the accountability app, Spar which enables you to risk/win real $$ by proving that you are in-bed-by/up-by a certain time thanks to time-stamped video check-ins. ***You can also join my Sunrise Club Challenge starting on March 25th on Spar! You have to check in via video on the app 5x a week for 2 weeks showing that you are consistently rising with the sun ☀️...or pay $10 each time you miss! #moohahahaaaa!