Does our success depend on consistency?

Hi guys,

Today I am going to explain you why I don’t fully agree with this saying. Ok, so let’s make something clear first: I am not saying that it does’t depend at all. It is very important part of success to be consistent. Otherwise, how are you going to master whatever skill you are using?

But I can’t say, I fully agree with this. Try to imagine situation that for example, you want to become a professional programmer. Sounds simple, doesn’t it? You just need to spend a lot of hours learning how to write code. So this is what are you doing. You are writing code for one application, you need to use a lot of resources, like tutorials, books. After you write another program. And you are realising that you need much less effort. You don’t need to check how to write each line of code, just some parts. And you keep repeating it, till you’ll get to the point, when you hardly check how to do anything. “I became a master!” You might think. But are you sure?

This is why I don’t agree with this saying. Being consistent doesn’t meet all requirements to achieve a success. I think, that this is true, but only if each time you are starting more demanding project. It is like someone who learn how to play guitar. If he or she will learn how to play a song and each time this is the only song being played, no matter how consistent you are going to be, you will not become any better. Even more, no matter how much time you’ll spend in total, you will still not become any better.

Coming back to programming: even if you were picking more and more complex tasks, if you haven’t discus it with someone more experienced, haven’t get any feedback and looked closely at any kind of constructive critique, how can you actually know that what have you done is actually good? Even if it is working perfectly fine. But maybe there is a way, how you can replace tons of lines of code with just five, which will make your program work much more efficiently? Similarly, in other fields, you might be making some small mistakes, which corrected now, would save you a lot of time in the future.

That’s why I can’t fully agree with this saying. I can’t deny it’s importance, but it works only if your time being spent consistently on learning any skill, you will use wise. On working on something, what actually could help you learn something new, instead of repeating what you know already very well. And as much as it is possible, try to find things, which are going to be more and more challenging each time. And keep getting feedback. Feedback is something what is one of the most important things I can think of in order to achieve any success. As quicker you’ll be able to figure out what habits can make you a better programmer, musician, etc. you will be able to incorporate it in your process of learning. Same if you are trying to come out with new product, it might to be wise, to get an opinion during the time, when you are working on it, then if it is ready to be sold.

So to sum up: while you want to achieve success, you need to be consistent, but at the same time make sure you are taking advantage to learn new things during the time you are spending on your work. And don’t be afraid to consult your work with someone more experienced. If you can’t find anyone like this in your surrounding, don’t hesitate to look for help on different types of forums (believe me, nowadays there is a forum on every subject you can imagine; well, if you are doing something very original, these advise might not apply to you as well. But at least have a look and maybe you can find something similar, what can help you). This way you can pick your bad habits up very quickly and save some time by learning from mistakes, someone else done. It doesn’t mean you will not make any mistakes, but at least less than you could if you wouldn’t research.

And with this thought I am leaving you today. I wish you a very productive day and I’ll see you in the next post on Wednesday.

Daria

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Again: getting on top of things ;)

Hi guys,

Today, I am going to talk about something, what have been (well, still is) a huge problem of mine. And this problem is: time. Or maybe better, lack of time.

Since I remember, I have always complained about it. Claims like: “I would do this, but have no time…” or “That’s great idea, but I won’t be able to work on it. I have no time!” were the most often said or thought by me sentences. No matter if it was day off, school day or any other day. Really, I have always suffer lack of time. And always I had great to-do lists. Usually long, but at the end of the day I haven’t tick even half of my tasks… You know, I haven’t got time πŸ˜‰

But when I am thinking about this now, I used to have time to watch so many episodes of my favourite programms on tv (always, no matter what), to play my favourite games for hours (literally hours!) a day. But my projects have been made last minute, because I haven’t got time earlier πŸ˜‰

Now, I’ve realised that in order to complete my projects, there was so much time appearing out of nowhere. Literaly, I could spend fourteen hours in a row (with huge ammount of coffee drunk) just to make sure, everything is ready on time. No failure at all (well, at least if we talk about meeting dead lines; with quality it hasn’t been so colorfull each time).

And do you know this feeling, when you just type your last dot of your projects, and there is still ten minutes left? It is so rewarding, you feel so high, just give it a last quick read and you are realising that so much could be done better (if it would be more time, of course πŸ˜‰ ).

I was sure, that everything will change when I’ll finish school. You know, no deadlines, no stress… Of course, if you are not stressed you can do much more, can’t you?

Of course you can! But… (yes, there is always some but) you need to acctually sit and work. So did I. Now, there is no deadlines in my life (except these set by myself) and I am still behind. At any point of the week or day I have some tasks which are due yesterday. My to-do lists for each day are just packed. And sometimes, I have to admit: it is overwhelming. Just looking at huge list I am starting to feel dizzy.

That’s why in my last post I told you about picking one, just one task and work on it till it is done. When you’ll finish, pick next one and repeat.

What I have done, to make it possible for me, I’ve started preparing my weekly to-do lists. All of tasks are sorted by due date (but there is no due date writen on the to do-list), so I am picking one task every time when I am sitting to work. First, which is not completed yet. And do you know what that has made for me? Now, I don’t need to worry about deadlines during my work. I don’t procrastinate either. I have one hour each day (Monday to Friday) and some more during the week days, when I am just sitting and picking task after task and try to get them done. And it’s working so far (well, I’ve started just three days ago, so you know, I will confirm it after some more time).

And I’ve just revised my to-do list, checked it according to due dates and there are still some tasks overdue, but I can see that list of them is getting shorter every day. And this is so motivating. Just so simple thing. This realisation, that you are getting on the top of things (even if you are moving there slowly) gives you so much fuel that you can’t even imagine.

And for now, I am going to finish. I wish you all very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post on Monday.

Daria

Sprint, or maybe better long run?

Hi guys,

Today is very special day of the week. And very special time of this very special day. And what I mean, by that: end of my work for this week. Even if in total it gives me only one and a half day off, for me it is a lot of time. I can use it to progress in my personal projects. And you have no idea, how much you can achieve within so short time.

As my work (personal and this in my everyday’s job) pilled up because of my eye infection, I appriciate every hour I can spend on catching up, especially on my personal projects (you can’t even imagine, how much motivation you can gain, if you are forced to stop working on what you like).

One day I was talking to my friend about our schedules. And I have said that in current situation I have only one hour every day to work on anything personal. He said, that to spend one hour only, doesn’t make any sense. You can’t really start working properly and it is time to finish. And actualy, if you look at this from short perspective, he is right. In one hour you can’t expect incredible results. Just little bit and pieces here and there are getting done.

But in long run, I have five hours of work counting from Monday to Friday, three hours on Saturday and eight hours on Sunday. In total: sixteen hours a week. What means two days of full time job every week. And part time job’s time (if you work only two days a week, like many students does). Quite cool, isn’t it? And even if your counting will show lower result, still whatever you’ll get will bring you closer to your goals.

By the way, I’ve heard that our success depends on our consistency. Well, I generally agree with this, but not fully agree. However, this is the topic for another (maybe next?) post.

Ok, but is working this way helping us always? Propably not. There are a lot of things you have to take care of before you start working. And the most important is to eliminate distractions. If you want to spend one hour a day working, make sure you are actualy working, instead of checking all your social media, answering phones, texting, watching movies, etc… If we ignore this things, our mind can focus on current task, instead of getting involved in another arguments between our friends (we all know, they couldn’t sort it out themselves just talking to each other or at least by sending private messages; it had to be sorted in public; and we all know, it is so interesting for us to read πŸ˜‰ ).

And another thing I am going to mention today, is to decide what are you going to do each day. Just pick one task and forget about all other. Focus on it and get it done. This is the only way, how you can actualy progress. Multi-tasking doesn’t work as well as doing just one thing at the time and giving it all attention (at least not for me; switching from one thing to the other actually distracts me a lot – eventhough, I used to think that I am master of multitasking).

But I will talk about this the other day too, as this is very simple thing, but quite complicated (if it does make sense).

But for now, I am going to finish my monologue. I hope you all have very productive day and I’ll see you in my next post.

Daria

P. S. I have discovered free pictures offered by wordpress. And I already love them πŸ™‚

Another unexpected break

Hi guys,

I have a feeling recently that the only thing I am doing is apologising for not posting. However, again I was not able to help it. I’ve got very bad eye infection which seemed not to heal at all. I have been instructed not to use any electronic devices (any way all the time one of my eyes has been covered so my ability to see without tearing very badly was kept to minimum any way), so I have left my phone and computer for some time (I had tried to write something, but blurry vision didn’t allow me to do anything).

But any way, now I am back. My eyes still aren’t perfect, but at least I am able to see what I am writing, so I will do all my best to keep publishing according to my schedule (starting tomorrow, as it’s going to be Friday πŸ˜‰ )

For now I wish you very productive day and I’ll see you in my post tomorrow.

Daria

Done is better than perfect

Hi guys,

Today I am writing another post starting with apologise for not posting anything. This last two weeks became just one huge madness. Deadlines in university, where I had to make up half year worth of work within less than one month. This lead me to the point, where I’ve got behind with my job (well, I needed to take at least one week off to manage with my university). However, today I am back, hoping that this was the last time when so much time have been taken out of my life (by the way, I deserve huge applause for not storing my work just in case of situation of any kind of computer damage, well done πŸ˜‰ ).

After this experience, I would like to talk about life-saving rule which helped me to manage all this time. Actually, two rules (however, one have been mentioned by me before), if I can call them rules at all.

About one of them I have been witting for sure. I remember sitting in bus and writing about it. This golden rule is to divide tasks for four groups, namely: important and urgent; important, but not urgent; not important, but urgent; and not important and not urgent (I haven’t invented it, but heard about it long time ago, but I can’t remember where). Judging of importance is taking place by determining consequences and priorities, while urgency depends on deadlines. Going through to do list, first group is the one we are getting done as a first. However, my first group became huge. There weren’t too many tasks on it’s own, but they were time consuming (especially my assignments for university, which required me to prepare some applications, write essays and reports, but what was the most time-consuming was research which is my favourite part of academic assignments, but it needs a lot of time to complete. So, although this blog was in first group, I had to move it temporary to the second group, as I wouldn’t be able to finish my assignments on time otherwise.

This was the first rule I used, but second was even more helpful. And it was: “Done is better than perfect” rule. As I am very bad perfectionist (I can never accomplish anything and be one hundred percent happy with it), I was spending a lot of time on correcting my essays and applications. Just small bits and pieces, which wouldn’t make to big difference, but I found them. So they were requiring my attention… This time I’ve realised that there is no time for this. I had to upload my work just few minutes before deadlines, even if I’ve done it with quite big pain in my heart and not checking it properly before it.

But actually, why done is better than perfect? Nowadays, when one single person is playing so many roles in society, to do lists seem to have no end. Even if you can see an end, there will be many tasks coming on daily basis, so such a thing like empty to do list doesn’t exist in the vocabulary of many of people. However, task by task, slowly we are getting done what needs to be done. And try not to get mad about it. Here is where perfectionists have a bit, just a tiny bit worse than the opposite. For them, single task never seem to be finished. There is always something what could be done better.

During my battle with university assignments I understood, that just getting one project out of my to do list was a huge relief. Just one out of so many was making huge difference. I had no choice, but upload work, which had so much to change, so much to do to improve. Any way, I have uploaded it as it was (of course after proof reading). Till now I feel a bit disappointment, but at least I have been able to manage everything on time and today, instead of crying because of necessity of repeating subjects, I can appreciate my holiday and thing about my personal projects. And what more important: sleep eight hours every night.

We need to remember, we have a lot of things to look after in our lives. And of course, trying to become perfect is a good thing, but personally I am going to try get my stuff done first and after, if I have some time to spare, make them as close to perfection as I can.

And with this thought I am going to leave you today. If you have any other ways, to get on top of so many things to do, let me know in the comment, I will be pleased to read your advises. And of course, I wish you a very productive day and I see you in my next post.

Daria

P.S. Hopefully, my posts will be appearing every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. So I’ll see you tomorrow πŸ˜‰