It’s Day 3 of my 2016 Groundhog Day Resolution Challenge. Still pacing myself, though I’m feeling a little antsy to really get moving. I’ve been taking the time to design a goal tracker for this year, based on my old concrete goals tracker. Today’s post picks up from yesterday, when I largely just did concept outlining
Tackling the Layout
Starting with the starting list of goals and points from yesterday, I spent about 3 hours putting this together in Adobe Illustrator (which crashed multiple times, grr). I started from scratch rather than starting with a copy of the CGT from years past, because I wanted to see what might happen with 2016 perspective. Also, the old CGT form is not designed to handle multiple goals, so I had to think-through how I wanted to present them.
On the LEFT is a menu of 2016 GHDR Goals Table based on yesterday’s breakdown. Each goal includes a description of an acceptable “concrete result” (abbreviated here to just “result”). What is a concrete result? It is the tangible fruit of your labor that is a new asset or capability that you did not have before. WHen you produce a concrete result, you get to award yourself 10 fat points.
ON the RIGHT is a Point Valuation Table that lists what other work is worth points While the left-side Goals Table is pretty specific about what is considered a tangible result, this table gives you a lot of leeway in finding ways you can give yourself some credit. This is a compact but complete summation of my personal creative productivity process:
- I evaluate my productivity by what tangible concrete results I produce, which is what increases my creative capability.
- I try to show my work in person as much as possible, because this is how random fortuitous connections are made. I also talk about what I’m doing, if face-to-face meetings aren’t available.
- I de-emphasize finger-twiddling “research” as much as possible, pushing myself to actually try things and develop my own understanding a little bit at a time.
- I relentlessly document, but I don’t adhere too closely to a detailed plan. I see where the discoveries take me, and try to pull the patterns over time as my understsanding builds.
This list works for me because the kind of work I’m pursuing is all new to me in some way. Being productive in the face of uncertainty is my job, and while I don’t particularly like uncertainty it is an unavoidable part of the creative process. This list is designed to help me overcome uncertainty and convert it into tangible results through the magic of exploration and synthesis, developing a new (to me) process along the way. This approach doesn’t work as well for endeavors that are mostly about following existing procedure with well-known criteria; productivity in that sense is more about efficiency, feedback, and workflow.
I still haven’t gotten to the Point Tracking System, but it’s getting late and I will address it tomorrow. I think this is a pretty decent result for today’s daily.
Other Things That Happened Today
I spent some time looking at Google Hangouts on Air, which might be a good way for us to meet virtually in a video chatroom and talk about our GHDR progress. It allows me to share my screen, and presumably others will be able to share their screens to. As a bonus I can also stream video solo directly into my YouTube channel, so Google Hangouts on Air might be a good way to start video blogging about my progress on the goals.
I also took the time to clean up my Google Plus profile. I know, I know…it’s still around! There was an update to the user interface last November, apparently, and they’ve emphasized a couple features I really like: Collections and Communities. The design of the UI is a refreshing change and seems very focused on having long-form discussion and sharing curated collections of topical posts.
Both the Hangouts and Google Plus Communities might be a good way to collaborate on our informal Groundhog Day Resolution reviews! If anyone has any thoughts on this, please weigh in in the comments or on Twitter.
» Dave’s Google Plus Profile
That’s it for today! Thanks for following along!