A friend of mine I really admire posted an interesting status the other day:
“Its not just pick things up and down…Its art, its way of life…you are an artist and iron is your tool, mind is the power.”
I like to think about life as a game and this status really resonated with my thoughts. Why? Thinking about yourself in terms of an artist and that you are basically your own masterpiece means there is no one else responsible for you, your goals, your desires and you can build whatever you want out of yourself.
If you are by accident working as a software developer you are probably familiar with “Agile software development”. I find few tricks of this methodology very useful and as my hobby is pushing things into extremes, I decided few months back to convert myself into a project where I am the product owner responsible for planning and future development of all areas of my life from my beautiful body to a funny inspiring mind until relations and whatever other area of your life you find important.
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Create a fucking roadmap!
Many people pass day after day without actually knowing their destination or purpose. I don’t believe it’s possible to accomplish something without knowing what you want to accomplish. Don’t act like a lost sheep.
You should already know why you want to achieve what you want to achieve! If not, close this blog, think and feel free to return when you find out.
Forget to-dos. They are useless. Having a roadmap is more fun and effective anyway. Make a list of your priorities for next month and write them down. Seriously, if you still know how to type (yes with pen), write them down! It will always remind you why are you sweating sweat every day. Think about what is important for you and which concrete actions you can take to embrace those priorities. Read a book, go to gym, invent new language etc.
Start small, keep adding things as time goes. Don’t overload yourself. Yes, I know:
But when you overload yourself in the beginning you are not going to be able to even put a bullet into your gun. Again, start small, keep adding things as time goes.
Split the tasks of whole month into weeks, weeks into days. Have a “monthly releases” where you evaluate your previous month and prepare yourself for a next one.
You need to have written down what you are planning or what you accomplished. If you are just trying to “remember it”, temporarily you can succeed but sooner or later your emotions will change, your memories will fade out and you won’t have a list of things to analyse so you can improve next month. You won’t see tasks you were not able to finish and without this you won’t be able to find solutions next month. Think also about your long term goals of course. Think where you want to get and collect months into a year as you are collecting weeks into a month and days into a week. Always work with small chunks of tasks and collect them together in a smart way while not losing enthusiasm. Schedule every task in a calendar. This is really crucial. Otherwise you are going to postpone everything or won’t be in a rush. Make a roadmap, write down why are you doing it and stick to it! I think it’s called “Mission statement”, or something like that.
I prefer to use trello.com. This is how my current month looks like:
And as always, focus on the progress. In my opinion, if you have persistence, clear vision and goals and are able to sacrifice whatever it takes to get there… there is no need to fear of not reaching goals YET. It will definitely come…so…keep calm and enjoy the process
I like to spend at least 5% of my time not doing anything. As a developer I know there is always a way to make something more elegant but for that you need a clear mind. I like to go somewhere outside of civilisation.
The first picture is just to make you smile (don’t laugh, I know). Pictures made by my beautiful ex-girlfriend. A minute of silence for my stupid decision (emotionally not yet so stable mind speaking).
And honestly I think this is a good way to finish this blog post… I mentioned the last thing on a purpose.
The thing is… I suggest to being very careful when preparing a list of your priorities…
If you want to achieve something big and make a masterpiece from yourself, trust me, you will be sooner or later facing a hard decision. The only way to decide is knowing yourself and your priorities. Sometimes you will regret them… but as time goes, the right values and your true believes will show up.
BTW: for those who made it until here, if you would like more concrete examples or have any questions feel free to write me, will be happy to answer. Hopefully I didn’t just kill 10 mins of your life (the life that is useless without the roadmap anyway hehe)