3 Simple Questions You Should Ask Yourself If You Wanna Go Places

I’ve been thinking a lot lately, about why some people rise like meteors to the top, and others are stuck doing the same thing over and over again, toiling day after day from their 20s until they die. It’s amazing, when you see a group of people from similar background, how far some of them can go, leaving the rest of the group in the dust.

What makes them successful? There are many factors, of course, but what I found is that they all ask these three questions, after they’ve finished a work, a project, or anything of significance, really:

  1. What went well?
  2. What went not so well?
  3. How can I make it (even) better next time?

The ones who keep staying in the same spot year after year after year after year don’t ask themselves questions like these, unless it went REALLY wrong. Of course most people are not that bad to get it really wrong all the time, so probably they’re doing OK, which means nobody will fault them–after all they are doing their job “just fine”. But most probably that also means nobody will promote them either.

Those who keep asking these questions, especially the 3rd one, are the ones who get better all the time you meet them. It’s fun meeting them once in a while just to give yourself a “whip” to do better yourself. Those 3 questions are hard questions. They force us to think. But to me, they’re really worth the trouble. I’d really be depressed if one year from now, I find that I haven’t improved at the things I’m doing. It’s like wasting one year of my life, really.

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5 thoughts on “3 Simple Questions You Should Ask Yourself If You Wanna Go Places

  1. It also takes a lot of motivation to constantly do point 3 though :).

    Personally going places (at least work-wise) is just a means to an end, I don’t mind cruising if it means I get more spare time to do things I like (or even to procrastinate/ponder the meaning of life). I mean, whats the point of going places if it means long hours and selling your soul 😀

    I definitely felt they were trying to buy my soul today 😦

  2. You quite often hear people making claims such as “I’ve had 20 years experience” in support of some argument or position. All too often I think one could reply that there is a distinct difference between 20 years experience and 1 years experience repeated 20 times.

    It is that distinction that is important – and maybe not ones apparent “level” in life.

  3. I especially like the way some companies add the whole team’s total experience together to an absurdly high number when they’re trying to sell their services, like “The team has a combined 80 years experience in IT” (as in perhaps 20 people with 4 years each), and so on.

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