Life Is Like A Business
When I was an undergraduate student at university I had a buddy who was studying business. He was a sharp, street-smart guy who grew up in a solid, hardworking, working-middle class family in Brooklyn (New York). He was studying business. His father was a small businessman. We were students at an "elite" school. One day, while having one of our warped discussions about the various oddities of this world, we got onto the subject of business, and the operations of the larger, corporate organizations. He said something very simple, yet profound, which was that "Business is just a series of tasks. That's all it is." He then went on to found a very successful international health insurance company. His words still ring true to me today. Maybe there is some hope for our educational system after all.
In the last post (Day 4) I introduced the idea of the necessity of developing a "Steemit Productivity Strategy" in order to manage our time and energy on Steemit to maximize productivity, and minimize waste and fatigue. I proposed the homework task of auditing the general amount of time and energy you spend on Steemit on a typical day. Needless to say, the overall feedback I received on the post was something along the lines of "I can't even find the time to complete this homework task!". This, of course, only reinforces my overall point. People are OVERWHELMED by Steemit, primarily because they don't have a STRATEGY. So, as all business - and life, for that matter - is just a series of tasks, the way out of our abyss of Steemit Stuckness is to proceed forward "one task at a time".
Building Upon Our Initial Productivity Assessment
Once we do complete the first step of assessing (auditing) our activity on Steemit, in order to get a rough sense of how much time and energy we are expending daily on the platform, we then have some more tangible data upon which to devise smaller, manageable tasks to help us move progressively forward towards our longer-term goals. We may very likely not know exactly what those longer goals are right now - which is absolutely fine, and expected - but building a series of smaller, short-term successes will help us establish a sense of continuous accomplishment, and help us maintain a healthy level of morale as we continue experimenting, learning, and gradually developing longer-term goals while we proceed on our Steemit journey. Without this powerful, morale-boosting strategy we can easily get stuck without direction, and without the small series of accomplishments under our belt which help to keep us motivated through the inevitable "rough spots". That is, on our "darkest days" we are able to find comfort by looking at all of the small tasks we have achieved so far.
This is where it is helpful to upgrade our "Steemit Productivity Toolkit". One of the most powerful, yet simple, tools which will help us at this point is the basic list. Creating and maintaining a running list of small tasks is extremely valuable in the process of moving forward. Lists allow us to organize, put into action, and monitor the progress of our evolving collection of small tasks. This then makes it easier to track our progress in the longer term. Lists can be as simple, or as complicated, as you deem necessary. I am fond of "digital checklists" because they enable me to check tasks off as they are completed AND move the tasks around. For instance, I can have a "to do tasks" list, and then below that a "completed tasks" list. This format enables me to get a VISUAL sense of my overall progress over time. Here is an example, related to the ACTUAL project of writing this post :
to do tasks
brainstorm main post ideas
write each paragraph seperately
proofread the post
- find a photo for the post
Once the "find a photo for the post" task was done I simply cut-paste it from the top to the bottom list. Most tasks can be accomplished with a list as simple as this. You can then save your lists into larger collections of "finished tasks" .txt files to reference into the future, and get a sense of your longer-term progress.
Putting Our Task Lists Into Action
Now that we have our new "list powertool" working for us, let's put it into action. You have done your productivity audit to get a rough sense of the amount of time and energy you spend daily on Steemit. You have also likely been AT LEAST browsing through some content on Steemit, and likely upvoting some good posts, and following some interesting people. This is a good, basic start to your journey. Now, with your listmaking tool you can begin setting some tasks. Your first tasks may be as simple as -->
"- browse the Steemit "photography" tag for a few minutes each day, upvoting some good photos, and following interesting photographer profiles"
That's it! That's a TASK! That is something TANGIBLE, and measurable, which you can do EACH DAY, and which produces TANGIBLE rewards (in the form of new photos and photographers to appreciate and follow on Steemit, plus some curation Steem income) which you can BUILD through daily effort, and which progressively enhance your sense of confidence that your activity on Steemit is actually producing results. This is often ALL we need to remain free from the NARLY CLAWS of "Steemit Stuckness".
So with this powerful new combination of "task-devising plus list-making" we can begin to move forward in a progressive, methodical, comfortable, (small) step-by-step manner, which enhances and organizes our experience as we navigate daily through the mass of content on Steemit. With this fundamental, task-focused strategy we are able to break down our Steemit experience into MANAGEABLE CHUNKS, and process those chunks in a way which gives us a sense that we are making daily progress from our efforts.
The Dreaded Homework Task
So, for those of you who are starting to gain a sense of appreciation for the strategy I am beginning to lay out here, and are focused and motivated enough to complete some valuable homework, here is a helpful TASK-based assignment that you can do at this stage :
**Homework : Make a list of FIVE small tasks which you have been doing daily on Steemit this week. For instance, for me, that would include :
browsing the "photography" tag and upvoting ONE good photo each day
reading ONE new Steemit tutorial post each day
Make your tasks as ACTIONABLE and EASILY MEASURABLE (so that you can check them off of a checklist when completed) as possible.
Then, for the second part of the homework task, create a checklist for these five tasks, and begin to work through the checklist - checking off each task as you complete it - for the next seven days. Create a "tasks to do" list (top) and a "completed tasks" (bottom) and move the entries of your daily lists accordingly as they are done. Store your seven days worth of daily lists into one "weekly progress" list .txt file.
Try this out, and feel free to share your experience in the comments. I will build upon this foundational task in upcoming posts.
Full Steam Ahead...