Holler, where has the year gone? Can you believe we are exactly halfway through the year? Me neither, as I get older time seems to fly by more quickly. And being a field marshall – ENTJ personality type, I love to plan and review progress. Lately, I’ve been liking the more-better-different-less framework to evaluate progress, as an evolution of the stop, start, continue framework.
Framework? What is that?
Some goals are easy to measure, if you want to pass a test, there is a pass mark and then if you meet that mark you pass, and if you under that mark you fail. However, as life develops, the clear black and white of academia becomes much greyer. When things are more subjective, how do you determine progress and success? There are many different approaches out there, and new frameworks being developed all the time. Like clothes, some frameworks come into fashion as others become dated and uncool.
Enter more-better-different-less. This framework is originally developed for feedback, but I also like it for evaluating progress myself on goals and life in general.
It’s really simple and allows you to segment items into the four named categories. What I love is the forward-thinking approach, so as well as evaluating the past, you are forced to think about the future. You can evaluate the past and plan for the future together.
More: What went well, did you really enjoy and want to do more of? I love this for encapsulating all things you love and are excited by.
Better: What do you want to still do, but tweak your approach? And this acknowledges these items are important and can be improved.
Different: What do you want to do in a completely different way? Yet here you have items that you still want to do, but need to rethink the method or approach.
Less: And what do you want to stop doing, or cut back on? Here are the failures, and items you have now realised are low-value activities.
What are my big goals for 2018 and how are they coming along?
Like a mad woman, I’ve on a two marathons a year schedule. And in the first half of 2018, I have already run one marathon. It was a trail marathon and I was very slow – despite my hopes to love it, I really did not.
I’m learning Chinese and making slow but reasonably steady progress. I am aiming to pass HSK 3 & 4 this year. I have the HSK 3 test in mid-July, so I’m feeling the HSK 4 by the end of the year is feeling kind of ambitious.
I’m loving blogging and connecting with people in the FI community, but procrastination gets me occasionally. I feel I need to be in the right frame of mind to write, whereas I can do my day job – write code and manage projects no matter how tired or unenthusiastic I am.
Plans for H2 2018
If all the planets align I could be quitting work in two years, which is equally exciting and terrifying. Or it could be 2.5 years. Or more. So I need to get myself comfortable with all these possibilities – I want to be truly flexible.
I’ve got my 40 by 40 list to be crossing off – am I making progress on this?
Revaluate – More, Better, Different, Less
So how will I approach the second half of 2018? I know doing exactly the same thing exactly the same way gets exactly the same results. So I need to be prepared to make changes to obtain better results.
Hence I want to use the more-better-different-less framework to shape my thinking and drive the way I approach the latter half of the year.
More: I want to spend more time learning Chinese, I feel I’ve taken my foot off the pedal and I really want to refocus here for the second half of the year.
Better: I’m going to put running here, I need to up my training to try and improve my marathon time. I know what I need to do here, drop some weight, eat more healthily and keep to the training plan. Moreover, the bit I always struggle with is running harder and faster. I need to seek ideas and inspiration to get over this barrier.
Different: I’m going to start mixing up my commute with my newly purchased bike. As detailed here in Should I get a bike? I live too far from the office to initially cycle commute, but I might be able to work up to it. And in the interim, I am breaking in the bike by cycling to the station. And also learning how to cycle in the city, by Boris biking it from station to the office. So far, so good.
Less: I’m loving the blog, but some parts of it are less fun than others. I’m hence going to make an executive decision to care less about SEO and just write what I love without clickbaity titles. And I’m going to stick to the core blog and twitter, and officially close the Pinterest trial. At the end of the day, I found the Pinterest clicks too low quality, alongside it feeling like a mammoth undertaking to design pins. And it is very freeing to make that decision.
Over to you
- How do you evaluate your goals?
- How are you doing for your 2018 goals?
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Looking forward to your thoughts and ideas – all are welcome.