Sunday: A Week into a Behavior Analyst's Hustle and Grind

This is part of a 7-piece series that highlights the dedication and experiences that go into just one week of my life as a behavior analyst at the present time. Read the other posts here.

Author: Ryan O'Donnell, MS, BCBA

Author: Ryan O'Donnell, MS, BCBA


5:30 AM - Wake up, coffee, and morning gym session. 

7:30 AM - Back home, smoothie and protein shakes in hand, ready to knock out some work. - An International Collaborative and Progressive Behavioral Science Organization. - An International Collaborative and Progressive Behavioral Science Organization.

8:00 AM - I have a pretty good system for saving tasks and setting reminders for what I need to do... Now, that doesn't mean that I always get to them in time. I'm really behind on getting back to about a dozen people on various emails and side-projects that we've been considering or brainstorming. So today is dedicated to catching up on those. The majority of the work is catching up on work related to a community of behavior analysts called BxPlus - clicking the picture will take you to the website. We're working on some website revamps. Essentially, we meet weekly online, discuss behavior analysis and projects related to behavior analysis, share resources, and keep in touch throughout the week on a platform called Slack. If you're looking for a verbal community that really pushes each other to be the best well-rounded and effective behavior analysts as possible, then check it out - but be ready to work. 

12:00 PM - I pause for a coffee break with a few local computer science professionals that are interested in some of the various projects that I have my hands in. I met them 3-4 months ago through a random bar conversation and we're just trying to figure out how we can blend some of our skill sets and ideas together in the right project. There's such a need for collaborative work with really anyone in the technology industry - go find someone today. Just start with talking about what behavior analysis could offer the world and ask them questions about their field. It always leads to really great discussions. For me, it's figuring out how to align resources to really get to work collaboratively with professionals in the tech world. 

2:00 PM - Sit down to knock out other previous commitments for the BxPlus (Bx+) group. Catching up feels so good!

5:00 PM - Stop for a quick "Get Stuff Done" meeting with my colleague in Brazil, Paulo Aguirra. We try to meet weekly and chat about how we can align some of our shared business and behavior analysis goals, as well as set goals for the upcoming week. It's really nice when you find someone that can bring in a perspective that you don't always think of and who can push you to think about all the relevant variables that need to be in place for an effective approach to solving a problem. Paulo's really good at helping me do that.

6:00 PM - One of the weekly Bx+ online meetings starts, with 7 or so participants from 2 different countries and 5 different states in the US. 

7:00 PM - Wrap up our weekly meeting, follow-up on a few other commitments from the meeting. 

8:00 PM - Call it an early night, with some YouTube and Netflix. 


  1. Had a surprisingly long meeting with the computer science friends discussing various project ideas. I sometimes look at meetings like that as "taking away" from my productive time, but they are anything but that. They actually lead me to getting a lot more thoughts going, pushing myself to work harder on my ideas and how to align resources for more collaboration with people like them, and feeling refreshed to sit down and work a little harder than before I had "stopped" working. 
  2. Completed a solid ~16 hour day
  3. 8 hours and 44 minutes on my phone.
  4. Completed ~12-ish hours of work related to behavior analysis and dissemination of our beautiful science. 
  5. Caught up on everything that I said I would except for ONE project... That's slated for first thing in the morning! 
  6. Learned some new information in Computer Science... feel like I still know nothing (so much more to learn!). 


  1. Absolutely nothing. Perfect day. 

Final Thoughts:

Well, that's the last of the 7-part series. Skimming back through them it's kinda cool to see what one can accomplish in a week. It was a little bit of a challenge to find something of value to communicate in each of them. The more that I can hone in this process of "story telling"  through writing the more opportunities that I think will arise. So, it was an exercise worthwhile, but we'll have to see where the data goes to assess just how much value this venture was!