In Grit, Angela Duckworth says grit has two components: passion and perseverance. Gritty people are passionate about things that take years to achieve. That helps them through the sub-goals, some of which can be a grind.
Having a top-level goal with no low and mid-level goals can lead to frustration. It’s believing in overnight success.
Having low-level and mid-level goals with no top-level goal leads to early passion for a project and quick disinterest. The next shiny new thing will pull you away. It’s totally fine for some things, like jumping from hobby to hobby recreationally. Professionally, though, it can be detrimental because it’s hard to grow career capital if you’re jumping from thing to thing.
Angela describes a top-level goal setting technique attributed to Warren Buffet (though it seems similar to Seinfeld getting credit for marking X’s on a calendar).
Write the 25 things you want to achieve in your career
Circle the 5 most important
You’ve now identified your 20 biggest career distractions
It’s a lesson in focus. Angela adds a few extra steps:
From the 25, identify the items that lead to a common goal
You’ve now identified your top-level goals
I really like these extra steps. It reminds me of blobs combining to form bigger blobs that then absorb smaller blobs until you see your top-level goals to focus on.
Where does writing daily fit in? Some posts come easier than others or are more fun to write. Collectively I think it’s helping me become a better writer and helping me focus. Being a better writer helps with organizing thoughts and telling better stories.
What top-level goal does this lead to? I’ll think about it, because right now I’m demonstrating early passion that I hope isn’t followed by lead to quick disinterest.