One of the biggest challenges with designing a good life for ourselves is that the stuff we measure our days, weeks, and even months with is not how we measure our life as a whole.
The stuff we measure our life with, living with integrity or building a few deep relationships with people we care about for example, building trust, honesty, loyalty, come with no awards, no vanity metrics, no promotions, and no recognition.
And, just in case that was not hard enough, there are often minimal signs of progress for long periods of time.
You don’t get to see the results of your loyalty and trust until much later.
There are no retweets or likes for being someone worth trusting.
It is when your kids are 25 years old, finished university and working that you can say I have a done a decent job of raising them.
Things that truly matter are hard to measure and maybe that’s why we don’t spend time working on them.
Faith, love, hope, honesty, simplicity, compassion, stay present, courage, trust, etc are not easy to measure.
On the flip side, most of the stuff that people seem to focus on largely are things we can prominently measure in the near future [e.g. work/career milestones, popularity or fun side projects]. These things seem to matter for the longest time… until they don’t.
It is the classic urgency vs. importance prioritisation problem.
And, as is the case with most things, it is much easier to talk about thinking long term/balancing the short and long term than it is to actually do it.
This is much like building good products. The foreseeable future seems more important than it is.
Play the long game, build for the long-term, focus on things that matter, even if they are not easy to measure, keep them front and centre all the time.
Matter, not once in a while when you feel like it, matter to people that matter all the time.