“If you must play, decide upon three things at the start: the rules of the game, the stakes, and the quitting time.” – Chinese Proverb
Life is all about numbers.🤔 Age, Accomplishment, Income, Expenses...name it, it's measured in digits. Life is measurable. As a developer or engineer, you are being measured.
"What hast thou done with the time that you had?" , Life will ask you.
It's the start of the 6th Month of 2019. It's time for mid-year reviews! My life has been about taking stock and measurement as per where I am/ we are then adjusting and moving forward at times not successful, but it works.
So, what have you done?
Of Resolutions, Plans and Goals. Did you start the year all optimistic with a new year's resolutions? What is not planned for will be wasted.
Did you write it down?
"Paper is to write things down that we need to remember. Our brains are used to think" - Albert Einstein
A written goal brings clarity and focus. It gives you a direction. And by rewriting your goals you not only reaffirm what your goals are but are also committing to doing these items. You may also find new insights that bring more clarity and focus on your goals and life. Written goals act as powerful reminders that you can use to keep yourself on the right track when you feel stressed and may consider making hasty decisions.
If you never wrote them, write your goals down.
- Get a notebook dedicated to your goals.
Break down the goals into the various things that you are involved in as a developer. This could be:
As a Developer: Personal growth goals.
- As an Employee/entrepreneur/freelancer: These are goals directed towards you with regards what pays your bills. What things can you do to improve yourself as an employee? Is there feedback that you have been given at your place of work for you to improve on? Are there targets you want to give yourself as a freelancer - is it do 10 projects this year? Increase my earnings to USD15000 from USD2000?
- Soft skills. ( I call them the Hard Skills ): Communication, writing presentation skills.
You can think through :
SKILLS ASSESSMENT: Where are you? What are you struggling with...are data structures and Algorithms an issue? Writing tests?
CORRECTIONS: Upon taking your assessment above, what needs quick adjusting? Is it
- Learn DSA(Data Structures and Algorithms).
- Learn Android Architecture Patterns....etc.
ADDITIONS: Is it a new language you want to learn? A new skill- You are good in backend and want to get into UI development? Is it to learn Kotlin or Dart(for flutter). Learn Firebase.
FYI: It is ok to not have a new area to branch on.
PRODUCTION: Do you have a portfolio? Is it old...or is it new? A software developer is measured by
To the above add an execution plan. The best time to plant a tree was 25 years ago. The next best time is now. Start acting on the plan you have. don't wait for the start of another year, month or week.
Checks and balance.
Create a time to check how far down the road you are. Whether you are following it. This review could be weekly or bi-weekly. Steve jobs said "Remembering that I'll be dead soon is the most important tool I've ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life."
Have this reminder somewhere:
“Is this useful?” and “what is the most important thing I can do right now?” Write down your reminder and put that reminder where you can’t avoid seeing throughout your day and week.
Most asked or reactions:
- Planning is a waste of time. Well its better to have a plan and see that you intended to do things and did not do them, than not have anything. Someone once told me, "Let no-one tell you that they arrived anywhere by accident or by chance. There is no destination called anywhere or somewhere at the airport, train station or bus station.."
Do you plan? Do you have a plan? Do you have any extra tips on planning or what has been your experience as a developer with planning? Let me know in the comments section below.